Sheffield Hallam University claimed a deserved victory over the University of Sheffield in the Netball W4s to kick off proceedings on EIS Day.
The opening of the first quarter was a fairly balanced encounter, with both teams playing well and scoring several early goals. Uni of were conceding more fouls and Hallam capitalised on these errors to take an early lead. With 3 minutes to go in the quarter, Uni of managed to equalise – bringing the scores back to 8-8 from 8-5 down. Hallam always looked dangerous in attack and ended the quarter 11-10 up.
Uni of started better in the second quarter; going in for more challenges and looking much more determined. Despite that Hallam always looked dangerous and scored the first goal of the quarter to go 12-10 up. Uni of fought back through GA Claudia Southwell who persevered with multiple rebounds to put the black and gold 13-12 in front. She was the main driving force for Uni of during the second quarter. As was the case throughout the first quarter, Hallam seemed to score whenever they went up the court and soon regained the lead and were playing much more fluid Netball. Hallam GS and GA Megans Wingfield and Ruiz getting lucky bounces of the ball on several occasions to keep the maroon and white in front. Uni of responded well as the quarter entered the final minute but as ever, Hallam were quick to counter and despite some unlucky shots coming off the rim of the net, they went into half time holding a 5-goal lead. HT Score: Uni of 18 – 23 Hallam.
Hallam continued to perform throughout the third period: winning most of the 50/50s and extending their lead to 7 goals after 5 minutes of the period. Uni of were not out if it yet but needed to find something more if they were to win the game. That something looked to be in the form of GS Olivia Phillips who’s goal halfway through the quarter got the Uni of crowd cheering and pushing their team on. As was a regular occurrence, Hallam always looked more threatening with the Megans in attack extending their team’s lead as the quarter progressed. Uni of started to show some fighting spirit, narrowly missing a good chance following an obstruction infringement but moved the ball well up court and saw Olivia Phillips calmly score 2 great goals as the clock ticked down to end the quarter. There was just enough time for Hallam to retake their 7-goal lead. End of quarter: Uni of 27 – 34 Hallam.
With 8 minutes to go, Hallam started to turn on the flair, knowing victory was in their reach. Uni of weren’t out of proceedings, scoring 3 quick goals to bring the score back to 41-37. Four minutes remaining – four goals to make up. Things were getting interesting. Hallam had to be careful not to capitulate after holding a healthy lead for the rest of the game. But an assured final few minutes saw Hallam see out the game and finish deserved winners
FT: Uni of 39 – 44 Hallam