ECHUCA’S 17 and under netballers proved no match for Shepparton United in Sunday’s Goulburn Valley League grand final.
The Murray Bombers went in undermanned and had their biggest loss of the season in their biggest game, with none of their four previous losses being by any more than six goals.
They were blitzed from the word go, down 1-11 at quarter-time after United sharpshooter Elle Brooks bagged 10 of her side’s 11 goals.
Echuca switched things around sending Molly Byrne to goal defence and Bridget Byrne to goal attack, but the onslaught continued. United led 29-5 at the half with the contest effectively over.
There was little the Murray Bombers could do, eventually falling 47-13.
They played without key trio Claudia Mawson, Meg Eishold and Marni Rickard, the three missing the game due to a school trip overseas, removing the entire usual attack end from the side.
It was a sour note on which to end a promising season for the Echuca side, which saw them finish second on the ladder with a strong 15-3 record.
‘‘Shepp United needs to be congratulated. They haven’t lost a game all season and it showed,’’ coach Gina Pearson said.
‘‘We didn’t have our best game and we were undermanned. We had a different whole attacking end and that was where we fell in the end.
‘‘We’ve had a fantastic year and there’s a lot to celebrate. They’re a group of 11 amazing players who love playing for our club.
‘‘We’re disappointed, but we’re still smiling because we’ve represented our club with pride.’’