ANZ Championship: West Coast Fever dominate to down Adelaide: Netball

West Coast Fever’s Caitlin Bassett and Ashleigh Brazill
West Coast Fever’s Caitlin Bassett and Ashleigh Brazill

WEST Coast Fever demonstrated its versatility during the team’s 63-44 win over the Adelaide Thunderbirds at HBF Stadium on Saturday.

Fever captain Ashleigh Brazill was not part of the starting seven because of a knee injury pick up during the Pre-Season Shootout in Sydney, leaving the wing defence bib to Andrea Gilmour, who lined up against former Fever player Khao Watts.

Defenders April Brandley and Courtney Bruce kept Thunderbirds shooter Carla Borrego at bay with Cody Lang replacing her with four minutes to go in the first quarter.

Fever coach Stacey Rosman credited her entire team for contributing to Brandley and Bruce’s performance.

“We’ve placed a lot of focus on our defensive pressure and the way in which we executed that as a team today enabled Courtney and April to be as effective as they were,” Rosman said.

Fever kept the Thunderbirds to just 10 goals in the second quarter to increase their lead to 16 by half time.

Borrego returned to the court in the third quarter and despite early signs of a comeback, the Fever maintained a strong lead going into the fourth quarter when Rosman made several changes.

Kate Beveridge, Erena Mikaere, Verity Simmons and Ingrid Colyer took the court while Kaylia Stanton made her Championship debut at goal shooter with seven minutes to go.

“Sometimes we lose sight of how much that moment means to a player but for Kaylia to have the opportunity to make her debut in front of our home crowd is something I’m sure will stay with all of us for a while,” Rosman said.

Stanton shot five goals from six attempts, adding to Natalie Medhurst (85 per cent) and Caitlin Bassett’s (96 per cent) impressive shooting statistics.

Fever play the Northern Mystics in Auckland next Monday.