THE 12-and-under Murray Netball League grand final at Rumbalara fell into the hands of the underdogs on Saturday.
Tongala went into the premiership decider as the team to beat, but were blindsided by an improved Deniliquin side, going down by six goals at the final whistle, 33-27.
The Rams defensive pressure down the court caused several turnovers in the first quarter to set up a four-goal lead at the first break, 12-8.
‘‘We were on the back foot from the start,’’ Blues coach Renee Kellett said.
‘‘Deniliquin came out firing and that’s what got us.
‘‘But the girls can hang their heads high, they never stopped fighting throughout the game just as they have done all season.’’
Deniliquin’s goal defence was on the end of a lot of intercepts which delivered the ball into the hands of Rams’ goalies who rarely missed.
Tongala had strong drives down the court, but Deniliquin were more accurate with their chances to lead 21-13 at half time.
‘‘The two girls who shot for our team (Meg Brennan and Maya Kellett) were both 10-years-old and did incredibly well given their age,” Kellett said.
‘‘The girls have done Grace (Hammond) and myself proud as coaches and have all improved this season.’’
Abby Waasdorp (C), Kaitlyn Joyce (WD) and Sienna Johnstone (GD) all played well for the Blues with Deniliquin’s Chloe Brown (GA) awarded best player in the final.