Netball

Champs Scotiabank 'A' to face bubbly ATL in netball final

Thursday, July 27, 2017

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DEFENDING champions Scotiabank 'A' held off National Housing Trust (NHT) 'A' to come out with a narrow and exciting 20-18 win in the 2017 Business House Netball Association (BHNA) Group 'B' play-off at the Leila Robinson Courts on Tuesday night.

Scotiabank 'A' will now meet Group 'A' winners Appliance Traders Limited (ATL) in the Open League final scheduled for Saturday.

Scotiabank 'A' coach Winston Nevers said it was good match between two good teams.

“It was also a very good game between both teams, but our players were well prepared for their opponents' challenge. NHT 'A' have a good team with a good crop of players in their line-up, and I knew it would not have been easy beating them,” he noted.

Never is already looking ahead to the contest against ATL.

“We will have to stop their (ATL) centre court players from getting passes inside the shooting circle to deny them scoring,” said the Scotiabank coach.

Meanwhile, in last Tuesday's crucial match the first half provided an interesting battle between the two that saw them being locked on points on six occasions.

The bankers through the shootings of Tennisha Bernard and Shadian Hemmings held their own against their opposing shooters of Jodi-Ann Ffrench-Kentish and Crystal Grant of NHT 'A'. They were all provided with good support from their centre court attackers, but the reigning champions Scotiabank A' managed to gain an 11-8 lead at half-time.

It was a very interesting second half where action picked up nicely, especially by the Christopher Smart-coached NHT 'A' who applied pressure on their opponents with good attacking plays to score three unanswered goals to tie the scores at 11-11, and then another to take the lead 12-11.

However, through attacks from Nicole Farquharson-Henry, Patricia McCalla and Shiann Lambert, the bankers quickly pulled back a goal for 12-12 scoreline as a ding-dong battled raged. Again, they were locked16-16.

Scotiabank 'A' managed to score two quick goals to go up 18-16 before their opponents replied to make it 18-17. With only two minutes remaining in the match, it was still very wide open and closely fought, but the more experienced Scotiabank 'A' with good defensive work from goalkeeper Sateva Taylor-Barnes denied the opponents' shooters with good interceptions to clinch a close and exciting 20-18.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Education 'A' defeated Sagicor Life 'A' 31-11 in Group 'B' on Tuesday. MOE 'A' will face NHT 'A' in the Open League third-place playoff match on Saturday.

In the consolation knockout semi-finals, also on Tuesday, Urban Development Corporation (UDC) beat National Commercial Bank (NCB) 22-20, while Jamaica National Group defeated Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) 19-14. Both UDC and JN Group will meet in the final on Saturday.

— Gerald Reid

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