PANTHERS V BULLSHARKS
Match Report Coach Stower
Our preparation for the season, despite Covid – 19 hitting, I believe is the best we have had for a couple of years. The girls are in great physical shape, strong and fit. We have worked on our mindset. We have had three trial games, which were fantastic in highlighting the areas we were building upon, and the areas that needed attention. Training has been very specific. To have a bye first round certainly threw a little spanner in the works; first game is always a little hairy, the excitement, anxiety, stress……all pent up in both teams at the first whistle. We had a great session though, working through our strategies to adjust our game in preparation for the Bullsharks.
First few minutes felt like “Groundhog Day”. We come out of the blocks, Bullsharks were dominant from the first whistle. Suddenly it’s 8 – 1. I call a time out. We take some deep breaths and we refocus back to our game module. Next minute we are back in the game, only 2 goals down for a few minutes.
It’s what happens next that completely baffles me. It’s like it’s all or nothing for us. Once the other team scores a few consecutive goals, we bury our heads and play for the scraps. We forget everything that we work on. Our court balance went out the window and we completely played into their hands. We stopped talking; we stopped trusting one another.
This is NOT how 2020 is going to look.
The girls will do their self-reflection and move forward. We will hit the court Tuesday night, and move forward. We will get back to our game module, and move forward.
Despite the score line, we still saw so many positives throughout the game. Caitlin Skaines was best on court for Panthers. She contested hard, she won ball for us, and was strong backing up in attack. I ask her to be relentless; and that she was. I was excited by the performance of our two rookies, Taylah Kidman and Kaylin van Greunen. Both girls were white as a sheet taking that court, but what a great first hit out for them. I don’t believe any other team in Ruby is as physical as Bullsharks, so to stand up as strong as they did was just fantastic to see, and will stand them in good stead for the rest of the season.
My final words to the team in our post game discussion…..We are Masters of Our Own Destiny. We can’t be any more prepared, it’s what they do next that will define the season that 2020 will be.