Challengers Rockets v Poole 15/10/17
Previous meetings with Poole B had both been close; we drew the first and lost the second by 2 so this game was always going to be tough.
The first quarter started well and it was goal for goal for the first 8 minutes, it was only towards the end of the quarter that Poole pulled away. Pleased to see more defensive pressure from the attacking end, turning two balls in the first quarter with a quick set up. Rockets let Poole capitalise on a couple of unforced errors at the beginning of the second quarter and were soon 7 goals down. Spurred on by a couple of intercepts that allowed us to convert Rockets had a scoring run and pulled the score back to 15-17, winning the second quarter by two goals. Two clean intercepts from Becca, two from Courtney, one from Viki and one from Chloe definitely contributing to the score line.
A strong Poole defence closed us down in the third quarter, it was hard to get the ball into our shooting circle and despite some patient and supporting team work we just didn’t get as many shooting opportunities as we needed. Defensively we were still turning ball, Courtney, Becca and Viki pressuring the attack into unforced errors and taking intercepts
Going into the final quarter 9 goals down meant that Rockets had to work hard to minimise the deficit. Hannah Pegrum to Centre gave fresh legs to a tired team. Rockets continued to push Poole but just didn’t have enough left to close the gap. Final score 42-27 to Poole.
Squad; Sian, Emme, Kate, Megan, Chloe, Courtney, Becca E, Viki, Hannah.
SL 3/4, 6/7, 5/5, 3/6=17/22,
EH 0/3, 3/5, 0/2=3/10,
KM 3/3, 4/5=7/8.
Opposition POM Megan Walker
Players POM Courtney Handley.
Rockets v Bournemouth
Our first home game of the season and Rockets started well, taking an early 3 goal lead, building on it confidently to gain a 5 goal lead going into the second quarter. Bournemouth had a run on the goals towards the last 5 mins, some accurate longer range shots from their GA bringing the score closer at 23-19 at half time. Rockets picking up on Bournemouth’s unforced errors helped to keep the score line comfortable.
A closely contested third quarter ensued and it was only during the final quarter that Rockets really stamped their mark on the game with some slick flow through court, accuracy in all areas and some very well timed turnovers. Courtney Handley really getting busy on the transverse line and forcing her WA into the pocket for a long ball. A 2 ball goal too, it would be nice to see some more of those. Dealing with changes each week is becoming easier as the squad starts to settle.
Final score 50-38 to Rockets.
Squad: Viki, Becca, Becca, Courtney, Chloe, Megan, Emme, Kate, Sian, Laura.
Opposition POM Emme Hale
Players POM Emme Hale.
Shooting Stats (first half only) Sian 12/15, Emme 11/16.
Rockets first game of the season and they were more than ready for it. Following a killer game of killer the second umpire showed up and the team were buoyed to take the court. Lawn took the first couple of goals after a slightly nervy start but Rockets pulled it back, Sian Lawrence back on court at GS sinking the goals confidently.
With a two goal deficit going into the second quarter Rockets knew that every ball mattered and pulled a few well timed intercepts to provide further shooting opportunities. Restricting Lawn’s shooting opps too meant the half time score was 16-14 to Lawn.
Fresh legs in the third quarter saw Courtney Handley make an impact as she turned ball on the edge of the D, the tips were coming out thick and fast and Rockets were on them first. Great defensive pressure resulted in a couple of held ball turnovers and errors in Lawn’s attacking end.
Rockets went all out in the last quarter and persisted for a long 15 minutes with various stoppages. They stepped up the pressure and gained the lead, safe with the ball, further turnovers in all areas of court and gave some accurate balls to the shooters, converting confidently, extending the lead successively. Final score 35-30 to Rockets.
Great team spirit today from Rockets for their first outing on an away game against a team with a very large supportive presence.
SL 17/20, KM 9/12, EH 9/17
Turnovers 21 J and this is the first time that I can say that everyone in the squad turned ball.
Lots of tips, held balls, forced errors too.
Following the heavy defeat from the previous meeting Rockets knew they had to prove themselves in this game and started strong, taking an early lead and hanging onto it. The team stuck to the game plan and worked that ball into the D patiently. Great c pass delivery and conversion, that’s something we’ve been chasing for a while.
A fast paced second quarter increased the gap so by half time we were 28-19 up, a massive improvement on the last meeting. The team reacted well to a lot of changes in the third quarter, defensively increasing the pressure on the Bourenemouth shooting circle. Good defence through court too, forcing errors through contesting. Rockets maintained the pace and intensity, as always there were some errors but we’re getting quicker to react and the error rate is dropping. A large squad of versatile players is proving it’s worth.
A promising team performance, a confident shooting circle, fast paced c court and solid defensive circle work, well done.
Final score 49-38
Shooting stats overall 49/72=68%
IP 31/37, PG 12/22, LD 1/5, EH 5/8.
POM Megan Walker.
The previous meeting resulted in an away draw. Rockets were missing Viki and Linz due to injury and illness, Poole had only 5 players from their original line up.
Rockets made a confident start, Emme and Paige linking well in the shooting circle. Paige dominating in the first quarter. Added pressure from Rockets provided further shooting opportunities as Chloe repeatedly took clean intercepts on the circle edge, those lifted passes allowing her the… elevation to turn the ball.
Going into the second quarter with a 2 goal lead Rockets continued to find the flow through court, converting c passes confidently, Emme making the most of the one twos from the circle edge to gain ground. Lizza Head in her second game for Rockets continued to pressure a very accurate long range shooter, denying her the freedom under the post, Becca tracking a very speedy GA , both audibly directed by Viki on the bench. Half time 21-15 to Rockets.
Changes in the third quarter saw newly 30 years old Izzy to GS, Rach Onions swapping the WD bib with Courtney. Rachael instantly made her presence known with 3 turnovers in the first 5 minutes. Poole defensively stepped up the pressure on our shooters as it became difficult to get the ball into the shooters. When we did the shooting was accurate but a few went astray over the back line as the forwards options were harder to see and give.
Going into the final quarter with a 5 goal lead and fresh legs with Megan at WA maybe we were a little complacent. From our c pass, Poole rebounded the first missed shot and converted, converted their c pass then converted from our error to bring the score to 28-26 in the first 3 minutes. Under pressure we made a few errors but still lots of turnovers and although Rockets added pressure on the Poole ball it suddenly became very tense. A very physically contesting Poole defence made it difficult for our shooters to be allowed any space in the D, when they did receive the ball it was hard fought for. Poole pulled away, their GA making an impact although Lizza and Becca took all of the rebounds. We couldn’t convert and lost 33-31. Pleased to get 2 points but disappointed not to win.
Rockets provided the intensity for 4 quarters, it was the final quarter that let us down. We were slow to adapt to the situation but overall the performance was good.
PG 7/11 6/9 0/6
EH ½ 6/7 ½ 3/5
POM Jemma Moore.
Thanks to everyone who came to support and to Kathy Moore for scoring
Rockets had a strong squad of 12,no Viki this week due to back issues but with the addition of Lizza Head to bring some height to the defensive circle.
A strong start from Rockets, lots of defensive tips, Lizza dominating the rebounds. Devizes were forced into 3 held balls in the first quarter, along with an incorrect throw in and a replayed ball they allowed our shooters the opportunity to convert. Winning that quarter 10-6 took us into the second with no changes to the team.
Devizes stepped up the pressure and found their shooting form. Two well timed intercepts from Becca and Chloe allowed us to limit the damage as the last 5 minutes of that quarter went a little astray as we struggled to get the ball to the shooters, handling errors compounding the situation. Linz and Izzy rebounded well but we weren’t quick enough to set up a defence on their back line throw ins, we needed to apply pressure to them in return!
Half time score 17-17. Changes in the third quarter saw Sian to GS, Jem to WA and Courtney to WD. It was all about the errors, both teams making errors under pressure and the other team responding. Emme Hale on at GD for the last 5 mins of the quarter to allow Becca some respite.
Devizes were in the lead by 4 goals going into the last quarter. Paige to GS and Emme to GA to bring fresh legs to the shooting circle, Devizes only had a squad of 8 and didn’t play their sub at all! Spirited defence from Lizza provided a couple of turnovers, Courtney at WD took 2 great intercepts on the transverse line and another closer to the D. Becca and Lizza rebounding 6 missed Devizes shots. Despite our best efforts we couldn’t catch up from the deficit and although we only lost that quarter 8-9 it wasn’t enough to get within 5, losing 34-39.
Lots of turnover ball, lots of tips (just need to take the feet there faster to get a turnover), a well paced game that could have gone either way. The relatively low score shows how much pressure was applied on court.
Shooting IP 8/13, SL 5/8, LD 13/21, PG 4/8, EH 4/5. Overall 62%.
At first a 13:30 meet on Mother’s day didn’t look too appealing. Then the clocks went forwards and it looked a bit better. Then someone set fire to a lorry full of straw which closed the M5 and it all became a little challenging.
After a couple of lengthy detours and an agreeable phone call to the opposition, Rockets turned up at the venue only 20 minutes late.
A 10 minute warm up followed and Rockets had a storming first quarter. Louise Clune at GK tipping and turning the ball at the back repeatedly. At the other end Izzy holding strong in the D and converting confidently. The 6 goal lead Rockets established in the first quarter stood them in good stead for the rest of the game.
Storm came back in the second quarter and put the ball into the D under pressure. We weren’t turning as many balls through court either, both teams scoring from their centres. Half time 21-13 to Challengers.
Changes in defence saw Becca E to GK, Becca S to GD and Rach to WD. The fresh legs in defence didn’t take long to start turning ball but unforced errors stopped us from converting. Storm started to creep back into the game but the momentary dip was soon over and Rockets stepped up their game.
Linz to GS in the last quarter brought a different style of circle play and she converted mid range shots after moving the ball around the D. The centre court pair of Jemma and Chloe were still outpacing their opponents with some great flow through court, linking with Emme’s drives to post as Linz took the GK away.
Final score 41-30 to Challengers. A big improvement on the last meeting and a much more positive team effort with a good work rate.
Squad; Louise, Becca, Becca, Courtney, Rach, Chloe, jemma, Emme, Izzy, Linz, Meg.
POM Becca Everitt.
Shooting; IP 18/26, EH 15/21, LD 6/9, overall 72%
Rockets second R3 game, their first home game and the crowd grew gradually despite the (early) 11:30 start time. Two team members on the bench after injuries last week.
A nervous start allowed Mavericks to take an early lead as we missed a couple of shots which they converted. Turnovers in defence allowed us to stay close as the first quarter finished with Challengers 2 goals down.
We were consistent in scoring 8 goals per quarter, pressure in defence resulted i…n a couple of held balls and some well timed intercepts keeping the score within reach, half time 19-16, Q3 25-24, full time 35-32.
A confident R3 debut for Paige Griffiths and Emme Hale at GD, audibly led by GK Viki Dean. A close finish and well earned 2 points. With more accuracy in the circle and better timing through court to allow us to give the first time ball we could have 5 points from this game next time.
Squad: Viki Dean, Becca Everitt (c), Rachael Onions, Courtney Handley, Chloe Williams, Jemma Moore, Linzi Dyer, Isabel Powell, Paige Griffiths, Kate MacNamee(inj), Megan Walker(inj).
Shooting: Izzy 13/24, Paige 13/16, Linzi 6/15.
Opposition player of the match-Jemma Moore
Thanks to Suzann for scoring and Kathy for helping with stats. Big thanks to Challengers supporters too.
Rockets v Babylon 24/9/16
Rockets started well in their first regional game of the season. The pace of play was faster and more contested than they’re used to and Rockets soon stepped up to the pace.
Defensively Rockets were strong and consistent, repeatedly turning ball around the circle edge. In attack they were under constant contested pressure, persistent patient feeds were necessary and, when controlled, the balls into the circle were mostly converted.
A strong performa…nce and definitely something to build on, this team has potential and took the opposition by surprise, losing by 4 goals. Good to get 2 points on the scoreboard too. Final score 34-38.
Squad: Viki Dean, Becca Everitt (C), Rachael Onions, Courtney Handley, Chloe Williams, Megan Walker, Jemma Moore, Linzi Dyer, Isabel Powell, Kate Macnamee.
Shooting: Linzi 17/23, Izzy 7/11,Kate 10/18.
Rockets gave a strong performance at today’s regional tournament. The first game v team Bath demonstrated just how ready for this Rockets were as they turned the first centre and continued to turn ball in defence, score 8-7 to Bath.
Next game up was Babylon who finished third in RL3 last season, final score 11-10 to them.
RL2 teams Crossbow and Almondsbury were both close games, 14-8, 14-11 respectively. Mavericks 12-9 and the final game v Pinehurst, also RL2 was tantalising…ly close, losing by one goal in the final seconds.
Some solid teamwork in all areas of the court proved that this team are ready for RL3, competing convincingly in every game. Izzy Powell at GS was calm and consistent in her Rockets debut, Emme Hale linking attack and defence effectively.
Very proud of this team today, positive and strong.