Ipswich victory "icing on cake" for captain
SATURDAY'S Division 1 grand final win was "the icing on the cake" for Brothers captain Sarah Cassin.
This is the team Cassin built from the ground up to challenge the dominance of Aztecs and Rebels and rejuvenate the Ipswich competition.
Two extra-time semi-finals indicated that goal had been achieved but Brothers' 50-43 win over Aztecs in the grand final made it that much sweeter.
It was Brothers' second successive title.
"It feels awesome," Brothers captain Sarah Cassin said.
With Ipswich Flyers duo Emilie McInally and Brooke Dixon in the circle for Aztecs, the challenge for Brothers going into the match was to prevent them dominating.
"It was very much a defensive game," Cassin said.
"We shut them down."
A defensive game it may have been but player-of-the-match was Brothers goal attack Liz Hales. "She played very well," Cassin said. "Especially to come back after losing with the (Ipswich) Flyers on Friday night.
"Her and Amanda (Pointing) shot really well.
"Amanda hardly missed and Liz shot really well and her feeding to Amanda was awesome. They were also rebounding and standing up to Aztecs' defence."
It was the perfect response after some missed shots cost them dearly against Aztecs in the semi-final a fortnight earlier. Aztecs won that in extra time and Cassin admitted she was far from confident her team could reverse the result.
"We knew it would be really hard and could go either way," she said. "In the end it came down to shooting and consistency, who could control the game and not lose their cool. It was two-up and two-down the whole game until the last quarter when we got on top. Then they got a bit frustrated and lost their cool a bit."
The win was especially satisfying for Cassin, who has been the architect of Brothers resurgence in Division 1.
Cassin and Brothers challenged the hegemony and it has had a profound effect on the competition.
"Last year the team I put together copped a bit of stick but it helped the comp," she said. "This year the two semis went into overtime.
"It's a lot more competitive.
"Back in the day no-one paid attention to the comp.
"Now a lot of girls are back into it because there is a high level of competition. Saturday's grand final was the highest standard of netball I have ever played in the Ipswich competition and I've been playing division one for 10 years."
Other senior team winners were Rebels 3 (Division 2), Pandas 1 (Division 2.2), Aztecs 3 (Division 3) and Flava 4 (Division 3.2).
- Division 1: Brothers 1 50 d Aztecs 1 43 (Player of the match Liz Hales; best and fairest Tahlia Vandenberg).
- Division 2: Rebels 3 49 d Aztecs 2 36 (Player of the match Melita Creedy; best and fairest Romana Regate).
- Division 2.2: Pandas 1 55 d Flava 3 42 (Player of the match Sina Lologa; best and fairest Shani Feldon).
- Division 3: Aztecs 3 41 d Rebels 5 39 (Player of the match Tara Lowe; best and fairest Maddison Leonard).
- Division 3.2: Flava 4 35 d Rebels 6 33 (Player of the match Wanita Martin; best and fairest Kristy Reynolds).