Sport

Juggling act comes up trumps

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June 27, 2017

ECHUCA UNITED A grade had another change to its defence on Saturday – but it didn’t stop them romping home to a 12-goal win against Nathalia.

Coach Elle Florance was impressed by the way the team responded from the previous week and settled into the unfamiliar line-up.

“We tried a few different things today and it was nice to see them pay off,” she said.

“We’ve had a bit of an unsettled defensive end with a couple of injuries and people away so it was good to be able to throw different people in there and to see them really perform.

“It took them a little while to get used to the processes and bringing the ball out of defence, but that was one of the strengths in our game today.”

United found a slight two-goal lead at quarter time and continued to push out the margin in the second quarter to be four goals clear at half-time, 24-20.

Despite having the home court advantage the Purps couldn’t seem to find any rhythm in their game and once the Eagles worked out their defence end the game opened.

‘‘Always one of our team goals is to start strong and I think we really came out in the first quarter and did that,’’ Florance said.

‘‘Nathalia came back at us a little bit because it took a bit of time to adjust to those defensive changes but I think overall we worked ourselves into the game quite well.’’

The third quarter saw the Eagles pile on another 18 goals while keeping the Purps to just seven.

They led 42-27 going into the final term and held off a late charge to win 51-39.

Last week against Barooga saw the side struggle in its transition into attack, but it easily delivered the ball down the goal-end where shooters Sophie Atkinson and Gracie Berryman finished it off.

‘‘We’ve been working on our transition into attack at trainings and it worked much better (on Saturday), especially in the second half,’’ Florance said.

‘‘We really worked on our processes in bringing that ball through the centre corridor and setting our systems up in the attacking end.’’

And the coach couldn’t have asked for more from her goalers who were dynamite under the post.

‘‘We hit lots of shots (on Saturday) and if we didn’t we had nice strong rebounds,’’ she said.

‘‘We’ll be asking them to do that again over the next couple of weeks.’’

The spoils went the way of the attack end with midcourters Bree Bookham and Remy Day and Berryman each picking up an award.

Liv Bish held her own in GD, having been thrown into the position in the absence of Klarindah Hudson-Proctor.

Despite it not being her natural position she managed to cut off several passes into the ring and combined well with Amy Gledhill in GK.

‘‘After those first couple of games that we dropped I think we’ve continued to build and we’ll keep doing that as the season progresses,’’ she said.

‘‘Barooga last week gave us a bit of a surprise, but it’s really tough in the league to know what’s coming up.

‘‘Even though we’ve played everyone I’m sure there will be some changes as we come against sides again.’’

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