Wellington beat Auckland to retain under-17 netball title

News from Netball NZ
Wellington Black A have kept two hands firmly on the Anna Rowberry Cup for a second year, beating perennial rivals Auckland 1 in the final of the 2017 Netball NZ U17 Champs played at the Pukekohe Netball Centre.

Playing outdoors but undercover, before an enthusiastic crowd of 400, the defending champions Wellington A Black surged ahead in the third quarter of the final, and had to fend off a final charge by Auckland 1, to win 34-25.

Wellington’s assistant coach Irene van Dyk attributed the victory to a special harmony in the team.

“We didn’t have a full squad until the week before the tournament, with two players in the Beko [Netball] League, and others fulfilling commitments to other sports. But they all worked so hard to bring it together, which showed the harmony in this amazing team,” she said.

Wellington had been pushed hard in the morning’s semi-final clash, by the young Howick Pakuranga team of predominantly Year 11 players; the capital side eventually winning 29-22. Auckland had a more comfortable run into the final, beating Christchurch 54-26.

The Aucklanders took an early lead in the final, with goal shoot Bianca Nagaiya shooting well. But Wellington put pressure on late in the quarter, forcing Auckland into unnecessary errors, to close the gap to 7-5 in Auckland’s favour.

Van Dyk gave the Wellington side a rousing pep-talk, and they responded by contesting every ball and snatching the lead. Auckland had adapted by the end of the quarter, but Wellington held onto their advantage, 13-12, at halftime.

A wall of defence across court from Wellington gave them a formidable restart. Wing attack Salote Taufa deftly fed shooter Saviour Tui, for Wellington to score six unanswered goals in the third quarter, and lead 26-17 going into the final spell. Although Auckland rallied, Wellington maintained their intensity to take the win for the second year running.

Howick Pakuranga took out third place with a 29-16 victory over Christchurch.

The four-day outdoor tournament is the largest event on Netball New Zealand’s calendar, featuring 38 teams and more than 450 talented young players from throughout the country.

NZ U17 Tournament Team

Jess Allan – Christchurch
Olivia Clark – Christchurch
Tayla Earle – Auckland 1
Maddy Gordon – Auckland 1
Paris Lokotui – Wellington 1
Bianca Nagaiya – Auckland 1
Ainsleyana Puleiata – Wellington 1
Renee Savai’inaea – Wellington 1
Leehava Saverio – Howick Pakuranga
Greer Sinclair – Auckland 1
Saviour Tui – Wellington 1
Emily Ussher – Eastern Waikato
Nanise Waqaira – Howick Pakuranga
Khiarna Williams – Eastern BOP
Ruby Young – Auckland 1
Day 4 Results
Team A Team B
Hutt Valley 31 V 21 Wellington B Gold
Thames Valley 38 V 29 Mangere Otahuhu
Mid Canterbury 30 V 49 Nelson
Pukekohe 45 V 36 Gisborne
Kapi Mana 25 V 33 Invercargill
North Canterbury 21 V 28 Papakura
Hawke’s Bay 35 V 37 Eastern Bay of Plenty
North Harbour 2 24 V 52 North Harbour 1
Dunedin 27 V 39 Taranaki
Harbourside 27 V 38 Waitakere 2
Trust Waikato Hamilton City B 26 V 29 Waitakere 1
Whanganui 41 V 30 Whangarei
Wellington Black A 29 V 22 Howick Pakuranga A
Auckland 1 54 V 26 Christchurch
Manawatu 39 V 41 Trust Waikato Hamilton City A
Auckland 2 48 V 36 Eastern Waikato
Kapiti 33 V 15 Ko Rua
Wairarapa *WBD V LBD Invitational
Selwyn 44 V 26 Rotorua
Hutt Valley 26 V 37 Thames Valley
Wellington B Gold 41 V 28 Mangere Otahuhu
Nelson 28 V 50 Pukekohe
Mid Canterbury 36 V 44 Gisborne
Kapi Mana 23 V 30 North Canterbury
Invercargill 27 V 26 Papakura
Taranaki 38 V 21 Waitakere 2
Dunedin 34 V 35 Harbourside
Waitakere 1 42 V 29 Whanganui
Trust Waikato Hamilton City B 34 V 32 Whangarei
Eastern Bay of Plenty 23 V 46 North Harbour 1
Howick Pakuranga A 29 V 16 Christchurch
Trust Waikato Hamilton City A 29 V 37 Auckland 2
Manawatu 30 V 41 Eastern Waikato
Hawke’s Bay 49 V 34 North Harbour 2
Wellington Black A 34 V 25 Auckland 1

*Please note: Each team who plays the Invitational Team will be awarded 4 points for a win, and the score will not be included in the goal differential calculation. For this reason, in the system these games have been recorded as ‘won by default’ (WBD).

Final Placings:

1 – Wellington Black A
2 – Auckland 1
3 – Howick Pakuranga A
4 – Christchurch
5 – Auckland 2
6 – Trust Waikato Hamilton City A
7 – Eastern Waikato
8 – Manawatu
9 – North Harbour 1
10 – Eastern Bay of Plenty
11 – Hawke’s Bay
12 – North Harbour 2
13 – Taranaki
14 – Waitakere 2
15 – Harbourside
16 – Dunedin
17 – Waitakere 1
18 – Whanganui
19 – Trust Waikato Hamilton City B
20 – Whangarei
21 – Thames Valley
22 – Hutt Valley
23 – Wellington B Gold
24 – Mangere Otahuhu
25 – Pukekohe
26 – Nelson
27 – Gisborne
28 – Mid Canterbury
29 – Invercargill
30 – Papakura
31 – North Canterbury
32 – Kapi Mana
33 – Selwyn
34 – Rotorua
35 – Kapiti
36 – Ko Rua
37 – Wairarapa
38 – Invitational
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