Prem One Match Report
Turnford 41 The Downs 40

Turnford travelled to Guilford to play third placed The Downs in their most recent fixture. With both teams missing players due to Superleague, Turnford were on the hunt for the 5-point win. A strong start by the black and yellow attack enabled the ball to be delivered successfully by Joseph and Gulvin into the circle. However with a new shooting pair nerves were showing, Turnford missed a few attempts allowing the home team to take an early 4-2 lead. Once the shooters found their rhythm, Turnford’s excellent through court work and defensive pressure from Titmuss, Davis and Skinsley saw Turnford score the next 5 goals. Taking their foot off the gas allowed The Downs to narrow the score margin once more, finishing the quarter 11-10.

Some quarter time changes saw Turnford push on the goal gap. Gulvin, in at GA was able to create space in the circle and open up play for Dwyer, who replied with outstanding shooting, as Turnford extended their lead by 5. Again, Turnford visibly sat back and The Downs responded by sneaking back onto the scoreboard. A time-out allowed Turnford to refocus their efforts and turnovers from Skinsley and Everitt allowed Joseph and Titmuss to present the ball to the black and yellow circle, who once more extended their lead to 6. Turnford passing errors in the last few minutes of the quarter saw this lead discarded with the blue team scoring the last 5 goals. Quarter score 11-11.

Both teams returned to the third quarter desperately seeking the win, and both suffering fatigue. A very evenly matched quarter saw teams go goal for goal throughout – a couple of crucial interceptions from Turnford were able to be punished by the shooters who edged out their lead by two. Winning the quarter 12-10.

Going into the last quarter Turnford realised if they could hold onto their lead they would continue to climb the Prem League table. The black and yellow side started strong but struggled to deliver their turnovers to the attack, a timeout was called and Turnford brought on O’Mahony for an injection of pace. During the timeout The Downs had also made substitutions, but were not quick enough to return to the court. This left The Downs without two shooters on court, who could not return until a goal had been scored – therefore if Turnford had played possession for the remaining 4 minutes we would have secured a comfortable win – unfortunately Turnford were not quick enough to realise this and the shooters slotted another goal. In the last minutes of the game Turnford made a couple of errors which The Downs were quick to capitalise on. With 40 seconds on the clock and Turnford’s centre we thought we had done enough to seal the victory – unfortunately a missed shot and The Downs rebound saw a mad dash to get the ball into their circle – Skinsley however had other plans, making a clean interception from the shooters as the final whistle blew. Leaving Turnford triumphant. Quarter Score 7-9.

Final Score: 41-40

Coach Dannii Titmuss said: “We are incredibly happy to come away with the 5 points. Although not pretty netball, it was great to see the determination of the Turnford athletes to never give up and grind out a win. As we continue to field strong squad performances against these top-flight teams, we are sending a message to the rest of the division – we are here as contenders. We were able to put out some wonderful passages of play, and now we must work on making these consistent across the quarter and across the game. Our aim is to extend our lead during the quarters – pushing on when we can, and to win all 4 quarters. We have a big game against Team Bath next week, where we look to W.I.N. once more. When we do this, we will secure our place in Division 1 for next season with 3 games remaining.”

Player of the match: Ann-Marie Dwyer

Turnford Squad: Ann-Marie Dwyer, Emily Gulvin, Georgia Satwick, Hannah Joseph, Sarah Davis, Kat Titmuss, Laura O’Mahony, Zara Everitt, Bea Skinsley.

Coaches: Dannii Titmuss & Ann-Marie Dwyer