Whether it’s a case of “unfinished business” remains to be seen, but Hawks Netball’s 19/Under team has shown no signs of letting up during the first two rounds of the Victorian Netball League season.
After sitting in first position on the VNL ladder for most of the 2021 season before Covid forced its cancellation ahead of finals, the Hawks are right back on top after two strong wins to kick off their 2022 campaign.
A huge 37-goal win against Geelong Cougars opened the season, and the Hawks held off a determined Melbourne University Lightning outfit to record a 53-45 win in Round 2.
Co-captain Keeley Burgmann said it was an important win after the Lightning were in front at quarter-time and were never out of the contest. The Hawks hit back in the second quarter to lead by seven goals at half-time, after goal shooter Eliza Molino scored 15 goals for the quarter and Burgmann three, but extended their advantage by just one goal in the final 30 minutes.
“MU were a very tough competition and one we had to work hard against,” Burgmann said.
“It was good to have to grind it out against them; we had to keep ourselves accountable and the team accountable that we weren’t going to drop off the intensity,” Burgmann said.
The Hawks will look to continue their winning run when they face a Boroondara Express team chasing its first points of the season in Round 3 on Wednesday night.
HAWKS NETBALL WILL BE LIVE STREAMING OUR 19/U GAME ON OUR FACEBOOK PAGE FROM 7PM AEDT
Burgmann said while it had been a strong start to the season, there were multiple areas her team wanted to show improvement against Express.
“Against Boroondara we’re looking to work to build on our defensive pressure all the way down the court, also building on hitting the circle with poise and control, as well as feeding our goalers with strong and smart passes,” she said.
“We also want to continue having good starts to the game and each quarter.”
Burgmann said the most pleasing aspect of the first two rounds was the contribution and performances from the team’s VNL newcomers.
Eight Hawks have made their 19/Under debuts already across the opening two rounds, including four of the club’s five Next Generation development athletes.
“It’s good to have a strong start to the season with two wins. It’s nice to see even with new talent coming in we are still able to work together to get wins on the board,” Burgmann said.
“The new girls in the team have provided enthusiasm and have slipped right into the dynamic that we work hard to have. Girls from last year have been able to continue to put out the work rate we did last year and all stepping up to lead the younger ones.”
Hawks Netball takes on Boroondara Express at the State Netball Centre in Parkville from 7pm AEDT on Wednesday, March 30.
7pm – 19/Under
8.20pm – Championship
9.40pm – Division 1