The Collingwood Magpies have won their first ever Melbourne Derby, overpowering the Melbourne Vixens 55 to 52 at Melbourne Arena on the Queen’s Birthday public holiday.
Suncorp Super Netball
Despite holding the lead from start to finish, the Magpies had to be at their best to hold off the Vixens who pushed us all the way in a physical and intense meeting.
The Magpies hit the court hard, jumping out to a seven-goal lead at the end of the first quarter. Ash Brazill was relentless, throwing herself at every contest and causing mayhem through the middle.
And this high pressure had the normally unflappable Vixens rattled, scoring just eight first quarter goals and committing an uncharacteristic nine turnovers.
Vixens bounced out of the quarter time huddle, cleaning up their game and dragging the score back to level with five minutes remaining in the second quarter.
Just three goals separated the teams at the start of the second half and the intensity inside the near-capacity Melbourne Arena was immense.
Magpies star shooter Shimona Nelson was unstoppable against a Vixens defence that had given up the least goals in the league so far this season.
She used her height and excellent positioning to score a game high 48 goals from 54 shots, including her 300th Suncorp Super Netball goal in the third.
The Vixens, thanks to some accurate shooting by Caitlin Thwaites and Renae Ingles and some desperate defensive work, were able to win the quarter and go into the final break just two goals behind their cross-town rivals.
50th gamer Kelsey Browne really took her game to another level in the final quarter, upping her work rate and shredding the Vixens defence with her incredible speed and cutting passes.
The Vixens came at the Magpies hard late, but huge defensive plays by April Brandley then Geva Mentor put the nail in Melbourne’s coffin, as the Magpies ran out 52 to 55 winners.
The Magpies will look to build on this impressive win in Round 8 when they travel north to take on the Sunshine Coast Lightning for Indigenous round.
Q1: Vixens 8 v Magpies 15
Q2: Vixens 16 v Magpies 12
Q3: Vixens 15 v Magpies 14
Q4: Vixens 13v Magpies 14
Suncorp Super Netball Premiership Points
Vixens – 2
Magpies – 6
Magpies shooting statistics – 55/63 (87%)
Shimona Nelson – 48/54 (88.9%)
Nat Medhurst – 7/9 (77.8%)
Magpies: GS – Shimona Nelson, GA – Nat Medhurst, WA – Kelsey Browne, C – Kim Ravaillion, WD – Ash Brazill, GD – April Brandley, GK – Geva Mentor