Pulse unbeaten after opening day of pre-season
February 8, 2019
The Pulse and Southern Steel remained the only unbeaten teams after the opening day of the Te Wānanga o Raukawa ANZ Premiership pre-season netball tournament in Ōtaki today.
The Pulse posted wins against the Tactix and Magic while the Steel produced a big second half to fend off the Northern Stars.
All the Pulse players enjoyed at least a half of each game today, coach Yvette McCausland-Durie continuing to look at a variety of combinations and playing personnel.
Happy enough to come away with a hard-fought 36-27 win over the Magic in the last game of the day, played over 40 minutes, and an earlier more decisive 64-45 win over the Tactix, McCausland-Durie is looking for more consistency on tomorrow’s second day.
``It’s nice to win but it was all a bit untidy for us,’’ she said. ``We’re feeling a little bit annoyed with ourselves because we’re just not quite pulling off a few of the new bits we’ve introduced.
``The attitude’s good, we’ve just got to get the execution right. It’s just about more time together and for Karin (Burger), these are her first games with us in the pre-season so it’s taking a little time to settle.
``We have set really high expectations for ourselves and while it is pre-season, we’re only two weeks away from the opening of the season and we do want to know that a number of things are set and working for us.’’
On the back of a slick attacking opening where Whitney Souness and shooter Ameliaranne Ekenasio were prominent, the Pulse kept their noses in front of a dogged and new-look Magic. Showing patience and impressive through-court transition, the Pulse unleashed in the run home, with newcomers Elle Temu, in defence, and Maddy Gordon, at wing attack playing their parts.
Earlier in the day, Pulse opened the tournament with a strong outing against the Tactix.
The hosts gained the edge defensively through the exploits of Sulu Fitzpatrick, captain Katrina Rore (nee Grant), Burger and Claire Kersten to widen the margin during an influential second stanza.
On attack, Souness and Ekenasio provided the flair before the Tactix clawed some of the initiative back during the third quarter.
The Tactix were able to reduce the deficit back to within single digits but could not withstand the Pulse’s powerful finish to the match where their menace on attack was well supported by a disruptive and effective effort on defence.
First day results:
Pulse 64 Tactix 45
Magic 64 Mystics 39
Steel 63 Stars 47
Pulse 36 Magic 27
Saturday, February 9
Pulse v Stars – 11am
Steel v Mystics – 1pm
Tactix v Magic – 4pm
Pulse v Mystics – 6pm
Sunday, February 10
Stars v Magic – 9am
Mystics v Tactix – 11am
Pulse v Steel – 1pm
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