Otago Girls’ earns right to play in Dunedin’s top flight

Otago Girls’ High School goal shoot Abby Harris (16) lines up a shot during her team’s Dunedin...
Otago Girls’ High School goal shoot Abby Harris (16) lines up a shot during her team’s Dunedin Premier A club netball promotion-relegation match against University Albion last night. OGHS won 64-44. PHOTO: GREGOR RICHARDSO
Otago Girls’ High School senior A has earned a spot in the Dunedin Premier A club competition after beating Uni Albion A 64-44 in a promotion-relegation game at the Edgar Centre last night.

A dominant first quarter performance set the tone for the rest of the game.

The school team made the most of its own centre passes, forced Uni Albion turnovers and slowed down its attack.

Uni Albion had moments of great play but was unable to string them together for the whole game.

Otago Girls’ goal defence, Beth O’Connor, picked up a few loose passes and intercepts early which her team capitalised on.

It scored seven unanswered goals before Uni Albion netted its second, and had an 18-5 lead at the end of the first period.

Uni Albion stepped up in the second stanza, forcing an early held ball by Otago Girls.

The teams scored relatively evenly before the school team pulled away with five in a row.

Its shooters, Abby Harris and Charlotte Underwood-Nicol, were confident and strong in the circle, moving well and creating space.

Harris was particularly impressive, shooting the bulk of her goals from long range at 87% accuracy.

That helped her team to a 20-goal lead early into the third quarter.

Jordan Evans-Tobata was brought on a wing defence and made her presence known early.

She nabbed turnovers by tipping the ball away and confusing space.

Uni Albion kept working hard, forced a few held balls and had a run of four in a row.

Shooters Ana Affleck and Bridget Thayer made it count when they had ball in hand, shooting 83% and 88% respectively.

Their team won the third period by one goal, but it was not enough to get within reach of Otago Girls’.

Both teams were guilty of making small errors that, in the end, proved more costly for Uni Albion.

Otago Girls’ will move up to Premier A and Uni Albion will go down to Premier B when round two starts June 12.

In the other Premier A/B promotion-relegation game, Phys Ed C beat College Red 58-45.

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