2023 Winter Netball Grand Finals Review | Section’s 5-13

Published on Tuesday, August 29, 2023

A recap of the 2023 section 5-13 winter netball grand finals, which were held at La Trobe Sports Stadium on Friday night.

Section 5: Fitzroy Stars 1 (20) def by Heat 5 (24)

By Josh Ward

Heat 5 claimed the Section 5 premiership after a tight four-goal victory over Fitzroy Stars 1. The Stars got out of the blocks fast before Heat fought back and took the lead heading into the first break. The Heat looked to extend their advantage throughout the next two terms, however the Stars kept themselves in the game all night with some great shooting and got to within a few goals of Heat during the last quarter. But it wasn’t enough to gain the lead, with Heat holding on to prevail in a great Grand Final. Many players shone for victors, including Katrina Dawes with 17 goals, but it was the Stars’ Leah Seeto who was a standout in the match, earning her the best on court medallion.

Section 6: Kilmore 2 (19) def by Diamond Creek 2 (29)

By Elly Kirlis

Diamond Creek completed a terrific finals campaign in the Section 6 competition after defeating Kilmore 2 by 10 goals in the Grand Final. The Creekers started strong, keeping the Blues at bay throughout the remainder of the match and never losing their advantage in order to secure the victory. It was a third straight win for Diamond Creek over Kilmore in the 2023 season and despite finishing the regular season in third, they were able to produce a strong finals campaign to finish premiers. The Creekers’ Rhianna Kirwan had an awesome match and went on to be the best on court.

Section 7: Heat 6 (32) def Thomastown 4 (20)

By Josh Ward

Heat 6 were able to turn their impressive regular season form into premiership success following a 12-goal triumph over Thomastown 4 in the Section 7 decider. It was the first half of the match that would set up the victory for Heat, as they scored eight goals to two in the opening term before a nine-goal to six second quarter saw them lead by nine goals at the main break. The Bears were competitive in the second half but couldn’t reduce the deficit, eventually falling short. Ariane Virgona was a dominant force in centre for Heat and was rewarded for her efforts by receiving the best on court medallion.

Section 8: Thomastown 3 (18) def by Montmorency 4 (24)

By Josh Ward

It was a close battle for most of the match, but Montmorency 4 would finish as premiers in the Section 8 Grand Final after defeating Thomastown 3 by six goals. The Magpies flew out of the gates with a five goal to one opening term and looked in total control before the Bears responded in the second with a brilliant eight-goal term. A great third quarter followed with scores tied at three quarter time before a three-minute patch in the middle of the final term saw the Magpies break the game open to produce the win. Both Malaika and Mia Baya were lively for Montmorency and were key in their side’s surges forward, while Deena Gerges was brilliant for the Bears and finished as the best on court medallion winner.

Section 9: Kilmore 4 (33) def by Lower Plenty 1 (36)

By Elly Kirlis

One of the most entertaining Grand Finals of the night was played between Kilmore 4 and Lower Plenty 1, with the Bears claiming a tight three-goal victory after extra time, to win the Section 9 premiership. Lower Plenty looked the better of the two sides throughout the middle stages of the game, leading by six at half time and seven at three quarter time. But the Blues bounced back in the final term, playing an impressive defensive game to level the scores by the final siren, taking the game into extra time. Despite the final few moments of the game suggesting that more time would be needed to separate the two teams, Lower Plenty produced three extra majors to finish as winners. The Bears triumph came in part thanks to the efforts of Bridie Malone who finished with the best on court medallion.

Section 10: Hurstbridge 5 (29) def Heat 8 (120

By Casey McGuire

Hurstbridge 5 put on a dominant display, winning every quarter convincingly in a 15-goal victory over Heat 8 in the Section 10 Grand Final. An eight-goal to two first term set the tone for the Bridges, and although Heat started to rally hard in the second half, the defensive pressure set by Hurstbridge proved to be to be too tough to handle, as Hurstbridge finished as premiers. Intercept machine Tara Wright took out best on court honours with her brilliant aerial skills, denying Heat the chance to get the ball into their shooting circle. Heat defender Olivia Colbert came alight in the second half, constantly getting hands to ball and causing obvious frustration in the Hurstbridge attacking third.

Section 11: Epping 6 (24) def Hazel Glen 2 (15)

By Elly Kirlis

Epping 6 capped off its brilliant season with a nice nine-goal win over Hazel Glen 2 to be Section 11 premiers. In a game that was tight for majority of the first half, it was the Blues who were able to make the most of their opportunities in the second half to claim the triumph. While the Glen rallied hard and produced a terrific finals campaign from fourth position, the Blues showed why they finished as minor premiers in a great final two quarters. Kylie Ward was deemed the winner of the best on court medallion with a solid display while Emily Timani and Melissa Rogers were also instrumental for Epping. Paige Corr was a highlight in the defensive end for Hazel Glen.

Section 12: Whittlesea 3 (34) def Hurstbridge 6 (21)

By Josh Ward

Whittlesea 3’s strong attacking presence helped them secure the Section 12 premiership, defeating Hurstbridge by 13 goals in the decider. Both sides were at their competitive best in the opening quarter before the Eagles, who had defeated the Bridges by nine goals just two weeks earlier in the semi-final, swung the momentum into their favour, gradually building their lead throughout the match before scoring 10 goals in the last quarter to secure the victory and add to their minor premiership feat from season 2023. Chloe Talbot was a clear standout in the attacking third for Whittlesea, with the goal attack going on to receive the best on court medallion for the match.

Section 13: Hazel Glen 4 (26) def Heat 10 (23)

By Casey McGuire

A close game resulted in Hazel Glen 4 taking home the Section 13 premiership by three goals over Heat 10. The minor premiers proved why they finished the season on the top of the ladder as despite it being goal for goal during much of the game, the Glen led at every break and a late flurry of goals proved to be the difference in getting their team over the line. Goal attack Anna Morris (11 goals) was adjudged the best on court, with her timing into the circle being clean, while she was always available for the shooter to shooter pass at every moment. Every time Hazel Glen started to pull away at the lead, Heat would come right back into the contest, but the premieres were too good on the night and became the club’s first NFNL team to win the flag.

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