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Celtic too good for Waicol

Rennie Hemara was in outstanding shooting form for Celtic. PHOTO/FILE

NETBALL

CHRIS COGDALE
[email protected]

Celtic ended Wairarapa College’s unbeaten run with a convincing 63-45 victory in the penultimate round of matches in the first round of premier one at the Trust House Wairarapa Netball Centre on Friday.

Celtic coach Dayle Clarkson said the first half was fairly even, then Celtic pulled away and kept building on their lead in the third and fourth quarters.

“It was certainly our best performance so far,” Clarkson said, “I wasn’t predicting it to be that one-sided, and it really didn’t feel that way.

“We have been trialing combinations, and now we’ve settled on players in key positions, and it’s paying off.”

Shooters Alicia Todd and Rennie Hemara were in outstanding form for the winners, both shooting in the mid-90 per cent range, which Clarkson said is a vital element the team are starting to get right.

“It’s important, especially if you don’t nail the shots, it just gives the ball back to the opposition, and pretty much most of the teams have good shooters, so you have to take your chances.”

St Matt’s GA Sophie Renton is under pressure from Harcourts’ Katie Alsop. PHOTO/JADE CVETKOV

The result ended Waicol’s unbeaten start to the season and came 24 hours after they had beaten St Matthew’s 57-31 in a game deferred from the previous weekend.

Celtic will play St Matt’s in their final game of the first round on Friday night, with nothing riding on the outcome.

Celtic are secure in the top division, and St Matt’s are winless and set for relegation to premier two for the championship proper.

“It’s a good game to try some different things, but you can’t afford to take students lightly because they can pull it out of the bag at times,” Clarkson said.

Waicol’s loss has opened the door for Jo Kelly and Co Carterton Maroon and Harcourts to battle for bragging rights after the first round.

Leaders Carterton were too good for Greytown Holmes Construction, cruising to a 46-18 win, while three-time defending champions Harcourts easily beat St Matt’s 58-27.

Harcourts and Carterton Maroon will clash in the decider at 6pm on Friday. Waicol and Greytown will meet in the other encounter to wrap up the first half of the season.

STANDINGS

Carterton Maroon 13 points; Harcourts 12, Wairarapa College 12; Celtic 8; Greytown 4; St Matthew’s 0.

PREMIER TWO

The two unbeaten teams Martinborough Masters and Jo Kelly and Co Carterton Legends will fight it out for promotion to premier one for the championship round.

Martinborough held off Gladstone Gladiators 30-27 in a tough battle, and Legends pulled away to beat Makoura 35-22. Jo Kelly and Co Carterton Black edged Opaki Vixens 27-25 in the third game of the weekend.

STANDINGS

Martinborough Masters 16, Carterton Legends 16; Gladstone Gladiators 10; Carterton Black 7; Makoura 4; Opaki Vixens 1.

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