In a first for the Broken Hill Netball Association (BHNA), a representative team has won at the Mildura Netball Carnival. This past weekend, the Under 13s held their nerve to come away Under 13 Division 2 winners with a 16-12 overtime victory against Ranges Gold.
Winning five games initially put the Broken Hill side at the top of Division 2 once the Under 13s competition was split. However, the team would proceed to lose a few games, ending in third place come finals. The Under 13s faced sides they had suffered group stage defeats to in the semi final and Grand Final.
Through sheer determination, Broken Hill won the semi-final against Ariels 2, a team that had beaten them twice, with a 9-8 scoreline.
The Grand Final was 10-10 at the end of regulation time, before eight intense minutes of overtime saw Broken Hill stand up and deliver the four-goal victory and bring the trophy and medals back home.
It has been a case of being so close to glory for the Under 13s team in the last three months too. From a second-placed finish at the Mid Hills Netball Carnival in June and a third-place finish at the SA Country Championships two weeks later, the side has now tasted the ultimate glory in representative netball.
With teams playing a minimum of 15 games across two days, BHNA Representative Coordinator and Under 13s Coach, Jodi Young, said it was a gruelling weekend, but a welcome reward for the side who has stuck together and been so close before, to get over the line in a big game.
“The team went to the Mildura Netball Carnival last year where they kind of stuck together, and they were second last. They’ve gone from second-last to first in their division, which is a significant improvement,” she told the Barrier Truth.
“They’ve gone from second-last to first in their division.”
“We went in the underdogs, but we quickly turned that around. [The team] just wanted it so bad, they didn’t want to be second or third place again. They wanted first and that showed.
“It was a very emotional eight minutes in overtime. Everyone came and watched as you do in overtime where it’s goal-for-goal. It was intense. It was exciting. Everyone was extremely happy that we won. A massive achievement for the girls.”
The Association also sent an Under 15s team and an Opens team – made up primarily of Under 17s players – to the Carnival. While the Under 15s didn’t find a win, the Opens won at least three games and drew a couple, with BHNA President, Tori McManus, telling us their performances were reflective of displaying a great deal of improvement across the year.
“From an Association viewpoint, we are very proud of every single team and every single player that went down to Mildura. They performed really well and made Broken Hill proud,” she said.
“This year overall for our representative teams has been fantastic. The growth that you’ve seen not only as individual teams but as individual people and players, those girls are outstanding. The commitment and dedication they have not only at trainings, but the Carnival itself is wonderful to see.”