The first game of the season for Omega 2 and it’s a Herts County Game. Gaining promotion to Division 1, having just missed out on the top spot of the 2nd Division table at the end of last season, Omega are set to face Equals, who finished 4th place in Div 1 last season, so they’re unsure of their fate. A new team for the game with the introduction of newcomers, Ruby Brett at GS and Nicola Rantell at C and a couple of the squad missing, results in some players starting out of their usual position.
Omega start the game with the opening centre pass, securing the first goal of the game. Equals struggle to control their play to start the quarter and Omega capitalise on it, taking an early 5 goal lead. Omega settle quickly and the ball is well controlled by Nicola and Molly as they bring it down court, connecting well with both Sophie and Ruby to secure the goals, allowing the team to hold on to their lead for majority of the quarter, but a Equals begin to claw it back. A break by Omega GA at our centre pass allows Equals close the gap to 3 goals and the next centre pass is theirs, from which secure their goal, closing the lead even further. Claire Daws reads the game well and leaps to great height, intercepting the ball in the oppositions shooting circle, giving Omega the advantage once more. With 40 seconds remaining, Equals are quick to pick up a loose ball in our shooting circle and punish with a goal. The final 18 seconds and it’s Equals taking the final centre pass, but Omega apply the pressure and manage to prevent the goal, ending the quarter with a score of 16-13 to Omega.
Omega take the first centre pass of the 2nd quarter and settle nicely to take the first goal once again. Equals error on their centre pass, giving Omega a second opportunity at goal, but we fail to hold on to the ball. The team all play well, holding the lead throughout, but Equals are fighting back and close the score down to 2 goals difference, making the bench and spectators nervous, but that’s short-lived. The team tighten up, read the game well, resulting in superb interceptions from Nicola Rantell and Claire Daws, allowing Omega to open the game once more. Fantastic marking of the ball by Hannah Brown at WD in the final few minutes, forces Equals to error and Nicola is quick to pick up the ball and win ownership for Omega. The first half of the game is a great opener for the team and their teamwork on court has paid off with the first half ending with an 8 goal lead and a score of 33-25 to Omega.
A switch at half time sees Hannah Brown reverting to her usual GS position and Ruby taking up WD. An unsettled start to the second half of the game, but the team soon adjust and they begin to force their opposition to error. Omega swiftly take control and the change of tactic at half time sees a much tighter defence played in the circle by Louise Cousins and Claire Daw, with Equals not so certain on feeding their shooting circle. Omega maintain an 8 goal lead throughout the quarter, increasing it further in the latter part. An attempt to increase it further with a final goal as the last centre pass is taken with just 10 seconds remaining, but Equals double up on our GS, intercepting the final attempt of the quarter and preventing the goal and the 3rd quarter ends with a score of 50-40.
The final quarter and Omega are keen to secure the game with steady, controlled play, which they maintain and increase their lead. Equals break on their centre pass, which Omega are quick to punish and take the goal, taking the score to 53-40 to Omega with the first three centre passes. We sustain the pressure on Equals both down the court and in the defensive circle, forcing errors on their opposition. The whole team look comfortable on court and their confidence is evident as they approach the final whistle. The feeds into Hannah at GS are spot on and the conversion rate from our shooters matches. With 9 seconds remaining in the game, Omega make a final attempt to secure a goal, but they can’t quite make it. The game ends with a fantastic high score of 72-53 and a very happy team.
A superb start to the season with all players giving their all and committing to the game. A well fought game throughout by all and a great to watch the team play a controlled game in their first match together and their first game in Division 1.