North Heidelberg 1 were unable to hold on to a three-goal advantage at three quarter time, with the second round clash against Diamond Creek 1 in Section 1 finishing in a 51-all draw.
North Heidelberg’s efficiency early held them in good stead, however Diamond Creek were able to wrestle back the momentum over the remaining three quarters at La Trobe University on Friday night.
North Heidelberg headed into quarter time with a five-goal advantage with Diamond Creek rueing their missed chances.
Olivia Ellis was instrumental in wing defence for North Heidelberg in the opening quarter, while Stephanie Calabrese was a wall in goal keeper.
Diamond Creek’s Chelsea Imanisani was impressive early with intelligent passing and immense pressure.
A dominant second quarter from Diamond Creek saw the North Heidelberg lead disappear with both teams scoring 24 goals to half time.
Diamond Creek goal keeper Lauren Spinks lifted in the second quarter, positioning herself well allowing her to gain two intercepts. Stacey Gannon was also influential in goal attack, setting up attacking plays and shooting a team-high nine goals for the quarter.
North Heidelberg wing attack Abbey Ellis showed her worth, easily weaving out of traffic with her superb agility and terrific passing. Paris Bosschieter continued to dominate in goal shooter, scoring 17 goals for the half.
The Bulldogs were able to regain the lead in the third term and headed into the final quarter three goals ahead.
Moving to centre from wing defence, Olivia Ellis used her speed to hunt down her Diamond Creek opponents, consequently intercepting Diamond Creek attacking plays.
Meanwhile, goal keeper Stephanie Calabrese continued to deny wayward Diamond Creek passes in the attacking third.
Diamo’s Stacey Gannon continued to shine in goal attack, while Kelly Shadowy was deadly in attack in the third quarter.
The intensity visibly lifted in the fourth quarter with neither team willing to accept defeat.
When Diamond Creek goal shooter Kelly Shadowy tied the score at 51 goals apiece with 30 seconds to go, it looked to be North Heidelberg’s game to lose as they held the next centre pass.
However, after calls to hold possession and two missed shots in the last 10 seconds, North Heidelberg were unable to break the deadlock, resulting in the two teams splitting the points following an entertaining battle.
North Heidelberg centre Chloe Lambert was everywhere in the final quarter, while Emily O’Brien’s desperation was pivotal late for the Bulldogs.
Diamond Creek’s Chylah Rogers adapted well from wing defence to goal defence mid quarter, after Leonie Sansoni had to be helped from the court in the 12th minute with a calf complaint.
Abbey Ellis was a standout for North Heidelberg, with her shooting and no look passes a sight to behold. With ball in hand, she seemingly had more time than anyone else on the court. Meanwhile, Paris Bosschieter didn’t miss in front of the net for the Bulldogs.
Chelsea Imanisani and Bronwyn Taylor were immense for Diamond Creek in the midcourt and Stacey Gannon was damaging all game in goal attack.
Diamond Creek 1 will face North Heidelberg 3 at RMIT University next Friday night, while North Heidelberg 1 will take on Fitzroy Stars 1 at La Trobe University.
Final score: North Heidelberg 1 (51) drew with Diamond Creek 1 (51)