Omega 2 vs Watford Premier 1 on Saturday 7th September 2019

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The first Herts County League game for our second team and they meet the team that was promoted with them a couple of seasons ago – Watford Premier 1.    Having encountered tight games on both occasions last season, they knew the game was not going to be a walk over, especially with a couple of their regular squad missing and people playing out of their preferred position and a different shooting combination.  The starting team being:-

GS – Ruby Brett; GA – Sophie Humphry; WA – Nicola Rantell; C – Lucy Andrews;  WD – Claire Statham; GD – Sam Abbott; GK – Louise Cousins and Charlotte Ramejkis taking the bench to start the game.

Watford Prem started the game and were quick to secure the first goal, but Omega reciprocated to match.  A fumble at Omega’s next centre pass, sees the ball back with Watford Premier who steal the goal  and a further couple of errors made by Omega result in Watford beginning their lead 6-2 but the Watford GA footworks, giving Omega the opportunity to claw back a goal.  Omega force another error on their opposition as a result of strong defending in and around the shooting circle, resulting in the ball going off the goal line, but Omega fail to take advantage of their position and Watford take the goal once more.   Good ball marking by GA, Sophie Humphry sees her tip the ball, but her team mates are beaten to the loose ball by their opponents, who once again take the ball to goal.    The Omega defence apply the pressure in the circle once more and this time, GA Sophie, rewards their efforts.   Watford shooters miss a couple of attempts at goal and GK, Louise Cousins tips, but cannot gain possession and Watford’s third attempt is successful.  A missed shot by Omega sees the ball taken down court by Watford to their shooter, but the attempt at goal is intercepted as GD, Sam Abbott connects with the ball, sending it towards her team mates and it’s collected by WA, Nicola Rantell in the mid court and rewarded with a goal by GA Sophie.  Omega tighten their defence, once again forcing the ball to go off the goal line and again they punish Watford’s error.  The opening quarter is not the usual form for Omega, who are taking time to settle into the new combination, but the slow start levels off by the end of the quarter, leaving them 2 goals behind with a score of 16-14 to Watford.

The 2nd quarter is started once more by Watford, but Omega appear more settled and in control, resulting in the quarter starting well.  A missed shot by Watford allows Omega to even the score in the opening minutes, but Watford respond as Omega falter with there passing in and out of the shooting circle which sees the ball go off the side-line and back in Watford’s control and punishing the error with a goal.  Omega loose their centre pass but win back the ball as Watford are forced to error and the ball is sent of the side line once more and this time GS, Ruby Brett rewards her team with a goal.  Omega settle into the quarter  having made very few errors on their court play so far.  They take advantage of the missed goals and errors made by their position at every opportunity, allowing them to take the lead and slowly increase it to a score of 32-26 in their favour by half time.

The third quarter is another great quarter for Omega.   A missed shot by Omega sees Watford gaining possession, but great reading of the game, speed and determination are displayed as C, Lucy Andrews flies in to intercept the ball cleaning mid air.   The Omega defence are strong and tight in the circle and GK, Louise intercepts a ‘pop’ of the ball between Watford’s shooters and Omega take the ball to our shooting circle.  Failed conversion sees the ball back with Watford, but as their GS attempts a shot, GD, Sam Abbott intercepts the shot and this time Omega are successful in their conquest.    The defending continues to be tight both in and around the Watford Shooting circle as WD, Claire Statham defends Watford’s GA, delaying her movement into the circle.   As a result, Watford force feed the ball to their GS and the ball goes off the goal line.   Omega take the goal line pass and succeed in moving the ball down the court, where they find their shooters with ease and the shot is converted.  They demonstrate control and great teamwork throughout the whole court for the entire quarter, supporting each other on the attack and working together on the defence, which forces their oposition to error on several occasions,   The final 6 seconds of the quarter and Watford’s GA contacts as she receives the ball, so loose the last opportunity of a goal in the quarter.

The score going into the final quarter sees Omega 9 goals ahead, so a comfortable lead, with a score of 43-34 in their favour.  A change to the team sees Ruby Brett taking the bench after a solid performance, replaced by Charlotte Ramejkis.    Watford return to court ready to fight for the game and this they do!   Charlotte took a few minutes to settle into the game but soon gets into her stride, however the whole team are unsettled and errors they haven’t made in the earlier quarters, begin.     Watford’s shooting is back on form and every error made by Omega is punished and the gap in the score closes rapidly, with Watford securing 9 consecutive goals due to the many mistakes made.   Omega struggle to gain composure, but are determined not to concede the game.  The score is level and Watford secure a goal to take the lead.  A battle for the final minutes of the game as each team want the win, but the score ends as a draw of 49-49.   A disappointing quarter after the superb play in the second and third quarters and one to learn from going forward.

Omega 2 vs Turnford 4 – Saturday 27th October 2018

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Omega 2 vs Turnford 4 on Saturday 27th October 2018 - Herts League Div 1

Today, Omega 2  meet Turnford 4 who are 2 places above them on the Division table.   For the 1st time this season, Omega have 9 players at the game, so a rota for the game play in preparation.  The opposition are very tall and have a player who usually plays Premier League, still playing in defense for the team, so Omega realise this will be a tough game.  As an umpire fails to appear for the game, Carole Titmuss is asked to umpire to allow the game to go ahead.  Omega accept this decision as the only other option is for Andrea Kinninmonth to drop from our defence to do it, but we are already short in this area of the court.

Umpire, Nikki starts the game with Omega take the opening centre pass and the opening goal of the game.  Turnford are first to take a lead as Omega attempt to feed overhead balls to our shooters, but the Turnford defenders are tall and manage to take possession.  The game is close in the opening quarter, with neither team able to make a break to take a clear lead.  The court play from both teams is matched, as is the accuracy of the shooting.   The quarter ends with Turnford having a 1-goal lead and a score of 15-14 to them.

The first change to the squad sees Molly Brett take the WD position from her sister, Ruby and for the 1st time this season, Emma Faulkner taking the court, picking up the WA position from Leanne Mansfield.   The team are reminded to not be tempted with overheads into our shooters and to play the ball safely in.   The team return to court, ready to fight for the game and this they succeed in doing.   The team are composed as they control the ball down the court and a couple of intercepted balls helps us turn the game.  The final few seconds of the 1st half of the game and it’s Omega’s centre pass.  Aware of the limited time, Omega attack are quick to pass the ball into GS,  Hannah Brown, who secures the goal just on the whistle, giving Omega a 1 goal advantage to go into the 2nd half, with a score of 30-29 to Omega.

The decision at half time is to go off rota, to allow the team to settle and progress their lead.    The 3rd quarter continues to see some great play from both teams, but Omega has the edge and manage to win possession of the ball from their opposition more, managing to increase the lead by 8 goals, however Turnford fight back hard, clawing back the goals to equalise 38-38 with only a few minutes remaining of the quarter.    Omega up their game for the remaining time, preventing their opposition from scoring further goals and a deja vu moment occurs….with less than 15 seconds on the clock, it’s Omega’s centre pass and once again, the attack succeed in getting the ball safely to Hannah, who secures the goal on the whistle.

The final quarter and the team are up by 5 goals with a score of 43-38.  Emma Faulkner takes the bench once more and Leanne returns to WA.  Ruby opts to remain on the bench, to avoid too many changes.  The team talk about the fact that the lead they have only took a couple of minutes to gain and are fully aware that their opposition could do the same to steal the game in the final quarter.   The team return to court, ready to play safe and the quarter starts.   This quarter sees our shooters being called for contact on 4 occassions,  yet throughout the rest of the game they have not been called for this infringement!  This is a game changer for the teams as 4 contact calls allows Turnford to secure these 4 goals from our attack play and also score 4 on their own centre pass, giving them the lead they need, which they succeed in doing.   The team are disheartened with the calls made against them which they feel are unjust.  These infringement decisions cost Omega the game as Turnford steal it with a final score of 51-56 to Turnford.

Omega look forward to the return match, with the aim of evening the result.

 

 

 

Omega 2 vs Abby Flyers Nomads – Sunday 4th March 2018

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Omega 2 vs AFN 3 4th March 2018

Today was the battle for the top of the table position in Division 2 Herts League and Omega were nervous, not only to face the top team, but due to being depleted in key positions.  This being a battle between AFN 3, who for years were a Division 1 team, demoted to Division 2 just last season and Omega, who were promoted this season as the winners of Division 3.  Once again, super-sub Chloe D’Arcy steps up to the plate and fills in for the team, this time in her usual GA position.  Molly Brett picks up the GD mantle from her usual WD position and Lisa Short takes on WD instead of her usual C position.

The opening quarter and Omega may be nervous, but start the game steady and settle their play well.   Tight defensive play from GK, Andrea Kinninmonth, GD, Molly Brett and WD, Lisa Short, winning 5 turnovers for the team, giving us more opportunities to secure the needed goals for the game.  As a whole, the team make few court errors this quarter, holding on to the ball solidly.   An excellent start to what is destined to be a close game throughout, with the score at the end of the first quarter being 13-15 to AFN.

The team talk in the quarter was a boost and testament to the play, with the team told to continue to play as they have started.  Both teams are keen to take the game with accurate shooting demonstrated by both team and the court play being neck and neck. Omega struggle with the 2nd pass from centre court and AFN have  tightened their defence, taking advantage of our struggle, winning the ball back again on 6 occasions on the Omega attack play.  Evening this up, the Omega defence players are tight on their opponents and turn the game over 8 more times, creating further chances for the team to up the scores and they pull back the score to a draw of 28-28 by half time.

Once again, the Omega coach applauds the team’s play and the team are determined to give their best shot at taking the top of the table.  The team are determined as they take the court to start the second half of the game and once again this quarter, the whole team give all they have got.  This quarter, Omega tend to follow the ball in their attacking play, instead of using the whole court and creating the space.  This said, the team maintain ball ownership and managed to take the ball to goal consistently, finished off by almost 100% conversion (only one missed shot this quarter) by both GA, Chloe D’Arcy and GS Hannah Brown.  By the end of the quarter, Omega take their first lead in the game, with a score going into the final quarter with Omega two up and the score of 42-40.

The final team chat and it’s again very positive with the potential win within our grasps.   The team are told to play safe and maintain ownership and they head back on court ready to fight to the end.  Another exciting quarter with Omega upping the anti for the majority of the quarter, adding a further two goals to their lead, but some fatal errors in the final 3 minutes allow AFN back into the game and they are quick to punish Omega’s errors, closing the gap to a draw in the final minute of the game.  Omega manage to take the next centre pass to goal and there are a mere 10 seconds remaining on the clock as AFN take the final centre pass.  The tension is high as AFN successfully find their GS, who scores the equaliser with 0.6 seconds remaining.

A very cleanly fought game by both teams, with each equally keen to take the win.  The game was neck and neck for majority of the time, with Omega just taking the edge in the second half, but unable to hold on to the lead gained.  The teams meet again at the beginning of April for a re-arranged fixture from the 1st round of games.  This is once again expected to be a very competitive, closely fought game and one to watch as once again both team compete for the top slot!

Omega 1 vs Rookies – Saturday 3rd February 2018

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Omega 1 vs Rookies at Wisbech on 3rd Feb 2018

This weekend saw Omega travel away to Rookies for an early 10.30 start.  Omega, having just returned to the top of the table were now once again the team to beat so they knew it wasn’t going to be an easy game.

The first C was taken by Rookies and Omega got off to a great start putting them under pressure causing the GD to break, giving Omega their first attempt to covert, which they did.  The game was end to end for the majority of this quarter with both teams making errors and giving each other the option to take the lead. Sloppy mistakes by Omega saw Rookies take advantage and with some faultless shooting by the Rookies shooters, the quarter finished 15-12 to Rookies.

The second quarter showed the resilience of Omega, who took the court with the pure intention to get control of the game and gain a leading position.  Although Rookies were just as fired up for this game and also started strong, hanging on to their lead.  Some great pressure from the Omega GD saw a fantastic interception and a forced held ball.  Unfortunately  omega failed to convert these opportunities and the lead remained with Rookies for the early part of the quarter. Omega increased the pressure throughout the quarter and with a great turnover from centre court Omega started to get back into their stride and play their normal netball.  This increase in pressure caused Rookies to make mistakes with simple errors such as breaking, which Omega took full advantage off.  With a spell of fantastic shooting by Omega the quarter ended 31-28 to Omega.

The third quarter was well contested, again with both teams increasing the pressure to make the other team make mistakes.  Omega attack were sloppy with passing this week, losing the ball on a few occasions, something which is very unusual for the Omega attack, who have the best attacking record in the division.  This, along with a struggle to stop the accuracy of the Rookies shooters and some easy balls going into the GS, meant that Omega did drop some goals once again.   The quarter ended 44-44.

The final quarter was heated to say the least with the  umpires having to caution 2 Rookies player for time wasting and there was a tactical decision to call some injury time with several Rookies players changing positions and going off for injury but then returning to the court within the minute.  Nevertheless Omega continued to fight for this game, with a strong turnover by the Omega GD they eventually took a two goal lead with 30 seconds to go.

Unfortunately Omega were making way too many errors instead of just putting this game to bed.  A poor pass from within the Omega attack gave possession to Rookies which they punished them for.  Omega simply did not convert all of their opportunities in this quarter and allowed Rookies to stay in the game.  The Rookies shooters barely missed a shot all game so full credit has to go to them for making it extremely difficult to get any big lead.  Omega walk away feeling happy with the 3 points but frustrated that they handed Rookies the draw, who probably feel like they are the winners of this fixture.   Game ends 57-57

Players of the match were awarded to both the Rookies GA and the Omega GA.

Omega 1 vs Ipswich Ladies – Saturday 9th September 2017

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Omega 1 vs Ipswich Ladies 9th Sept 2017

Saturday saw the first regional game for Omega in division 2 after a storming season last year with only one defeat. Omega stepped on court against Ipswich at their home ground in Sawbridgeworth with nerves and pressure running high. First whistle went, the game had begun with GK, Phoebe getting her first of many interceptions straight from the off. The girls were all full of adrenaline with quick play and fast passes into the shooting circle to secure the first few goals. As the game went on the team settled down keeping the ball safe with GD, Sammie and WD, Hannah providing great back up support to work the ball up the court into our shooting circle where attack worked smartly to secure the goals. Final 30 second to go Ipswich ball, where C, Lucy got a great interception which converted to another goal, Omega coming off court with a lead of 14 -6.

2nd quarter and Omega went on still wanting to do better and dig deeper, knowing Ipswich where going to come back with vengeance. Omega again working it well down the court into the shooters who were working tactically to ensure the goals – even with the Ipswich defence starting to notch up the pressure with contest. Both C, Lucy and WA, Sophie working hard to read each others positioning around the circle to provide the best support for GA, Emma and GS, Charlotte, who rarely missed but when they occasionally did, they were there to get the rebound against Ipswich tall defenders to sink the goals. Omega applied the pressure with strong arms and tight marking to cause errors for Ipswich which Omega calmly capitalised on with great support again from defence and calm tactical play coming off court with 31 – 14 lead.

Half time and team talk with Head coach and Captain meant Omega came on starting a fresh, having been told, not to become complacent with their extensive lead and to focus on defensive play.  Omega return to the court buzzing and still hungry for the ball, which their opposition were soon aware of.   C, Lucy calmly worked the ball down the court with great support from WA, Sophie and on the defensive line from WD, Hannah. As the game went on Ipswich girls were getting more aggressive and frustrated which Omega fed off, applying the pressure and turning over their mistakes. The play was calm and everyone on court wanted that ball, fighting for every opportunity and capitalising on Ipswich mistakes going into the final quarter leading 49 – 20

Final quarter and with a 29 goal lead Omega were confident but they still didn’t let this drop their play. With the first centre belonging to Ipswich, Omega quickly gained the advantage, due to defensive team work and pressure from GD, Sammie and GK, Phoebe lead to an interception to go to goal. This was the first of 3 conversions in a row from Omega leading to 6 goals in a row to open the final quarter. Ipswich were getting desperate for the ball and gave our attack a battle with GD getting warned for dangerous play but our attack stood strong and continued to stay confident with GS, Charlotte even impressing Paul, the Omega Coach,  with a dummy pass to GA, Emma to gain a goal.

Every Omega player wanted the ball and wanted to keep the ball safe by playing it smartly down the court, mixing up techniques and always communicating together and encouraging each other on. You wouldn’t be able to tell there were 2 new/ returning players on court in defence who right from the start worked well together. Smiles all round for 1st game in division 2 with a 68 – 30 final score, however we know next time we come up against Ipswich they will be fighting for it.

Big thanks to all the supporters who came to cheer on Omega at the game and even new addition Jesse, only a few weeks old!

Youths vs Allenburys – Saturday 18th March 2017

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Youths vs Allenburys 18th March 2017

Some great team spirit displayed today by the Omega Youths, who as usual, are warming up as I arrive, showing great enthusiasm.   The coaches select the starting team and they take the court for the first half of the game, with the line-up to start the game being:-

GS – Ellie Reynolds, GA – Lauren Ahern, WA – Faye Bellas, C – Neave Parsons, WD – Emma Lack, GD – Lauren Lee, GK – Charlotte O’Riordan

They show some great potential.   Some good linking midcourt and a slight change to the usual shooting combination with Lauren taking the GA position and Ellie in GS sees improved positioning and drive in the attack play.

Neave leaves the court after the first quarter due to a niggling injury and Holly replaces her, taking the centre position.  In this first half of the game, the team are more aware of their space and work hard to drive towards the ball to support their team mates.   The defence have a tough job in the circle, against an extremely tall shooter and experienced goal attack, who is skilled at the inter-circle passing.

A change to the whole team at half time, with the line up for the second half being:-

GS – Maisie Mizon, GA – Yasmin Rogers, WA – Holly Bennett, C – Louise Merrick, WD – Jodie Gill, GD – Millie Spires, GK – Jodie Wood

The team settle into their positions well, having replaced their team-mates for the 2nd half of the game.  They take time to think about their passing and positioning as they work the ball into the circle for their shooters to convert into the valued goals.  The defence again have a difficult task against the experienced players, but achieve some great interceptions, winning possession of the ball for their team.

Throughout the game, the whole squad demonstrated much more controlled play, thinking about their pass, movement and positioning.  Some players are beginning to read the game, whilst others picked up some loose balls, resulting in some good steals from their opposition.

A big thank you to the opposition, Allenburys, for great sportsmanship and for giving advise to our Youths during the game.

Coming closer to the end of the winter season and the Omega Youths are showing definite signs of progress and some great potential.  The game today tested out the selections made for the two core teams, to help the coaches, Hannah Sell and Hannah Brown confirm the squads,  which were announced to the Youths at the end of the game.  The future of the teams looks promising!

Omega 1 vs Wyvern Grangers – Sunday 9th Oct 2016

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Omega 1 at Beds Uni

Omega’s first away game and nerves and tension are present, but this doesn’t stop them starting well. In fact the atmosphere is buzzing as Omega attack the game well, retaining ownership of every centre pass and consistently converting the goals.  Many an interception from the Omega defence players supported the team obtaining a comfortable lead, with Grangers not able to gain possession from the team throughout the quarter, other than from foot faults by Omega. The score at the end of the first quarter was 14-5 to Omega.

Grangers return to the court having made some changes to the team, in an attempt to even the score, and Omega make a defence change, but Omega were once again up for attacking the ball and maintaining their lead. Tight defence in the circle and mid-court resulted in several interceptions and rebounds being won by Omega,  supporting the team in increasing their lead in the second quarter. Grangers put more pressure on the team, this time winning possession by forcing errors on Omega and turning over the game. Omega continued to fight for the ball, only allowing Grangers to score 5 goals again in the quarter, versus the 12 scored by Omega, increasing Omega’s lead by 16 by end of the 2nd quarter.

Omega make another subtle defence change and Grangers change their attacking positions again.  This quarter, the Grangers defence is stronger and controlled and they manage to tighten up against the strong Omega shooters, intercepting balls and gaining possession of forced feeds by Omega’s attack.  Omega’s defence is just as solid, with consistent interceptions and winning back of the ball, mainly from within the circle, but with several interceptions by the defensive play of the mid-court.  Once again, Omega only concede 5 goals to Grangers, but as the Grangers defence has strengthened, Omega only score 7 in the third quarter, but maintain their comfortable lead.

The final quarter and an attack change for Omega and more attack changes for Grangers.  Grangers come out strong in this quarter and force Omega to make many more simple errors, turning the game around.   A scrappy quarter for the Omega team, but their valuable early lead mean it’s too late for Grangers to take control.  Grangers score 12 goals in this quarter, versus the 7 scored by Omega, but the final score is 40-27 to Omega.