By Zac Lisle
Monash University Storm’s Division 1 side have won their second game in a row, and third for the season, after downing the Geelong Cougars by five goals on Wednesday night at the State Netball and Hockey Centre.
After a tight first quarter the Storm broke away to a ten goal lead at half time, and the lead didn’t change at the final break. But the finish was closer than Storm coach Jacqui Hansen wanted, but overall she was happy to get the win.
“When you’re thirteen goals up (late in the game) it’d be nice to win by that amount, but given the first couple of weeks we had at the start of the season we’ll take a 5 or 6 goal win in the end,” she said.
“They’re a tough team, they’re a physical team,” she said. “they’ve got a strong, tall goal shooter but we spent a lot of time trying to work on our defensive pressure to try and shut down the supply to her.”
“It’s always really pleasing when you see the girls do exactly what we’ve trained to do.”
The win has the Storm sitting in seventh on the ladder, and Hansen describes the season so far as “up and down”.
“We got smashed in the first couple of games so we’re like a different team now. I was always really happy with the way the girls trained which is always an indication of where they’re at.” She said.
Hansen was especially happy with the performance of two of her younger players, Nat Billings and Mel Perez, the latter earning all 6 votes from the referees after the win.
“Our young wing attack Mel Perez has come up from the under 19s last season and has just been an absolute stalwart in wing attack,” she said. “She’s quick, she’s agile, she’s as tough as nails and she just gives everything for a whole hour…for someone who is in her first season in Division 1 it’s just really pleasing to watch.”
“Nat Billings has come up from the under 19s and is really sort of showing that the height and the strength that she’s got is starting to help us win games which is really pleasing.”
The Storm take on the fourth placed Peninsula Waves next, and will be looking for their third win in a row. Hansen credits the good run to continual hard work at training.
“We’ve continued to work hard and very, very slowly the combinations are starting to come together.”