Consistent Flyers, Sapphires setting high early standards
NETBALL: After two comfortable wins, Ipswich Flyers leader Emilie McInally summed up her side's position perfectly.
"We're just ticking along nicely,'' the experienced representative player said.
Preparing for tonight's latest SEQ Cup games, the Flyers and cross-town neighbours Goodna Sapphires have started the season in promising form.
The Flyers beat Pine Rivers 60-39 in their second round game as the defending champions outclassed Redlands 84-38.
For McInally, the focus was on getting better with increased depth this season.
"I think we played well,'' she said. "There's much more to come from the team but it's early days.''
Shooter Kirsty Brennan had a fine game, displaying consistent accuracy.
With no early injury concerns at the Flyers, McInally was also keeping a close eye on Ipswich's second team, the Vipers.
"I think it's great,'' she said of having another side representing the city's emerging talent.
"It's something a lot of other associations have been able to do. It's great to have another team to cheer for.
"It gives the Ipswich Netball Association another group of mentors to work with younger netballers.''
Sapphires captain Robyn Walsh was also happy with her team's second win of the season over Redlands.
"We are consistent with our scores so far this season, however this game felt like a tougher game for us, albeit the score does not reflect this,'' Walsh said.
"I believe that this was a more physical game than last week against Underwood.''
Sapphires regulars Rebecca Asquith and Beth Thornton were defensively strong and turned a lot of ball over before it reached the circle.
Walsh said the duo's back up down the court was helpful to Goodna's shooting end.
That's where Goodna's shooting load has been shared between goal attack Renee Kalalo and goal shooter Chrissy Peever.
However, the Sapphires also slotted Sarah Cullen-Reid in goal attack and she shot well, supplying good ball to Peever.
"We definitely did not lose anything when that change was made,'' Walsh said.
"And it is pleasing to see us going forward if we do need to make a change that we can continue to put points on the board.''
Walsh said securing two early victories was a positive sign as long as the Sapphires avoided any complacency.
"It does give us the luxury of trialling new combinations and positions in a real game environment,'' she said.
"We have to be prepared for illness or injury if it arises.''
Walsh said the Sapphires were improving by being together so long.
"Everyone knows how everyone plays and their capabilities so we play to that,'' the captain said.
Preparing for tonight's game against Pine Rivers, the Sapphires welcome back Tayla Collie from her Queensland indoor netball duties.
"Everyone is fighting fit and ready to play,'' Walsh said.
"We haven't heard too much about Pine Rivers. We have had a look at their games and the score, but apart from that they are unknown to us.
"Pine did not have a team in the competition last year, so we're looking forward to playing them.''
State of play
SEQ Cup Round 3 tonight: 6.30pm - Ipswich Flyers v QUT; Goodna Sapphires v Pine Rivers. 7.50pm: Ipswich Vipers v Western Districts.
Rd 2 results: Ipswich Flyers def Pine Rivers 60-39, Goodna Sapphires def Redlands 84-38, Caboolture def Ipswich Vipers 56-35.