Crowning the final fast five’s 2019 victrix

photo: suppliedWartburg Kirchdorf School’s Michelle Bekelele (GA) reaches to take possession of the ball as her teammates, Anele Mkhize (GS) and Azile Zuma (GK) rally to support her during one of their pool games of the Midlands Regionals of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Fast 5’s Netball tournament, held in Pietermaritzburg on October 5.
photo: suppliedWartburg Kirchdorf School’s Michelle Bekelele (GA) reaches to take possession of the ball as her teammates, Anele Mkhize (GS) and Azile Zuma (GK) rally to support her during one of their pool games of the Midlands Regionals of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Fast 5’s Netball tournament, held in Pietermaritzburg on October 5.

WRAPPING up the inaugural SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Fast 5’s Netball tournament, St Anne’s College claimed the Midlands title at Voortrekker High School on Saturday, October 5.

In a low-scoring, high-action final, St Anne’s met The Wykeham Collegiate (TWC). TWC got the game underway, but St Anne’s intercepted their first charge upfield. Basketing the first goal, after two attempts on both ends, Jamie Rowe from TWC nailed her shot after a floated pass from the wily centre, three minutes and seven seconds had ticked away of the first half.

TWC dominated the first half with the scoreline, just after six minutes, being in their favour 4-1. St Anne’s clawed their way back with Jodi Lee and Shannon Armstrong both getting their names on the scoreboard as half time approached. The score sat at 4-3 as the girls took a breather midway through the game.

After their half time chat, St Anne’s levelled the score shortly after the second half started.

Armstrong was on song in the second half, finding the middle of the hoop for her team and edging the score up to four-a-piece, and then, after two unsuccessful attempts on both ends, she earned her team the lead for the first time in the game. Julie Trodd from TWC then landed the equaliser on the opposite end, following up on a shot that agonisingly spun around the hoop and popped out.

Three more attempts on either end didn’t budge the scoreline, including a two point that glanced the lip of the hoop by St Anne’s.

Rowe reclaimed the lead for her team with another one point but the lead was short-lived as Armstrong was allowed some space and, with her eye in, she levelled the score for St Anne’s again. With time running out, Armstrong calmly fired in another one point, with the score being seven in favour to Wykeham’s six. In the dying second, TWC quickly responded as they ran the ball up in their last gasp attempt, with the ball flying tantalising goal-wards, but the pressure shot fell short as St Anne’s celebrated.

A visibly ecstatic Coach for St Anne’s, Londeka Zuma, stated: “Look, I am shaking, what a game. So exciting! The Wykeham Collegiate was an amazing team to play in the final, but our defence won us the game!”

Their day started on a winning streak where they took on Epworth in their first pool game, bagging their first win 10-2. At the conclusion of the pool games, St Anne’s had netted 62 goals and topped the leaderboard with 15 points, Epworth finishing in second spot and earning themselves a place in the semi-finals.

TWC got their ball rolling with a win in their first pool game where they trounced St John’s DSG 17-1. At the conclusion of the pool games, TWC had wins throughout, with 15 points alongside their name and an incredible 87 goals scored. Host team, Voortrekker A were second on the log and met St Anne’s in the first semi-final.

St Anne’s dominated their first semi-final with the score at half time sitting on 6-4. In the second half they doubled their score, with a drought on the end of the host school, barring a sublime three pointer floating in by Tamika Baker taking the score up to 12-7.

Baker was acknowledged during the prize giving for knocking in three golden three pointers during the day.

Umpire for the Day was Ntuthuko Zondi representing TWC.

Dates and venues for the second year of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Fast 5’s Netball will be announced early in 2020. For more information, like the tournament’s Facebook page or follow the tournament on Instagram.

— Supplied.

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