Mandy Carter on Season 2018
A positive and constructive season.
2018 has seen our netball participant numbers double this season in comparison to 2017. This year we ran 2 teams which were arranged according to player ability, with both having great success. Initially we had an influx of girls as word had travelled about our pre-season and they were keen to have structured trainings with direction. Unfortunately, some of these girls did not meet the minimum age to play NFNL.
Early in pre-season we discussed my expectations of the players, the discipline I required from them and the reciprocating trust we needed to have. This meant the communication was there from the beginning and this proved to be successful.
Whittlesea Section 7 Best & Fairest, Amy Goodwin
We had a new coach onboard, Jade D’Amico, who organised training plans, gym sessions and gave variety in skill drills. The players worked hard in pre-season, trained twice per week and the young members, in particular, showed incredible progress. The young girl’s excitement and commitment at training was a credit to them, they motivated me to try new ideas and keep things fresh.
We applied for Sections 7 & 11 and were given 7 & 10. Our firsts had an average age of 19 while our seconds averaged 16 years of age. The seconds were to be the youngest team in the NFNL. After grading games our seconds were gelling well and were regraded to section 9. A great result but this meant they would now meet stronger bodied players. The improvement they had over summer was rewarded, but I was concerned.
The firsts were the fittest in their section, the last quarter we could always run out. By half way through the season, after winning by single digits most weeks, we found ourselves on top of the ladder. It wasn’t that easy, as it was a close competition. Now we had confidence and played like machines. We are not a tall team, but we were now believers. During the season we had 4 junior girls rewarded by playing up. It was grand final night and they were so nervous, they had over processed everything. I tried to get them to imagine training on their asphalt court here, but nerves beat us on the night by 3 goals. We were all shocked and devastated.
The seconds were great fun, they always wanted to learn. They had a great following of spectators and this also motivated them. We made finals, but lost first round. So disappointing at the time, but an amazing achievement for young girls, who I am so proud of.
NFNL presentation made it more obvious what a successful season the Whittlesea netballers have had. In Section 7 we had the leading goal scorer and Best & Fairest for the section and also the 3rd B & F. A credit to the girls as the section had 12 teams. The seconds for section 9 also had the leading goal scorer, runner up B & F and the 4th placed B & F. That’s my girls!
Overall, I am so proud of what my girls have achieved. I get great reward seeing their enjoyment and am amazed how much they retain from my sometimes outlandish, emotional coaching. They are maturing into aspiring, young ladies and the WFNC is contributing to that.
I would like to thank Tracey Dyson for getting our sponsors onboard and providing our uniforms. Thank you to the committee for putting up with me pushing the netball and giving me the freedom to make decisions, as I see appropriate.
It is great to see the netballers integrating with footballers making this more of a community, family club.