The Melbourne Vixens remain unbeaten in 2019 after defeating the Adelaide Thunderbirds 58-goals to 42 at Priceline Stadium to open Round 3.
It was a complete performance from start to finish by the Vixens, who dominated the home team for most of the game and came away with all eight premiership points on offer.
The Vixens were clinical from the get-go, moving the ball methodically around the court and scoring with ease. But the Thunderbirds hung on, thanks to some long-range shooting by Maria Folau.
Thunderbirds goal keeper Shamera Sterling was red hot throughout the game, finishing with five intercepts, six deflections and an incredible 13-gains. She was everywhere for the Thunderbirds, making life difficult for Vixens shooters Caitlin Thwaites and Tegan Philip.
The game took a rough and tough turn after the first, as the teams went goal for goal for much of the second quarter.
Led by eventual Player of the Match Renae Ingles, the Vixens were relentless through the midcourt, creating congestion everywhere and piling the pressure on the Thunderbirds players.
The Thunderbirds were down to just one on the bench after new recruit Beth Cobden went down with a knee injury and co-captain Chelsea Pitman left the court with an injury.
Melbourne took full advantage of the Thunderbirds woes, pouring on some late goals and taking a nine-goal lead into the major break.
The Vixens exploded out of the gates in the second half, outscoring the Thunderbirds 12-goals to eight in the third and breaking out to a 13-goal lead at the final break.
Jo Weston and Kadie-Ann Dehaney, who replaced an injured Emily Mannix in the second quarter, were immense for the Vixens in defence, combining for seven intercepts and ten gains.
The Thunderbirds looked better in the final quarter, but they couldn’t slow down Vixens shooters Caitlin Thwaites and Tegan Philip, who both ended the game with 29-goals apiece.
The Vixens will travel to Perth in Round 4 to take on the struggling Fever while the Thunderbirds will look to rebound in Melbourne next Friday night against the Magpies.
Q1: Thunderbirds 13 v Vixens 15
Q2: Thunderbirds 10 v Vixens 17
Q3: Thunderbirds 8 v Vixens 12
Q4: Thunderbirds 11 v Vixens 14
Suncorp Super Netball Premiership Points
Vixens – 8
Thunderbirds – 0
Nissan Player of the Match
Renae Ingles – Melbourne Vixens
Vixens shooting statistics
Caitlin Thwaites: 29/31 (93.5%)
Tegan Philip: 29/39 (74.4%)
Thunderbirds shooting statistics
Sasha Glasgow: 24/30 (80%)
Maria Folau: 18/22 (81.8%)
Thunderbirds starting seven:
GS – Sasha Glasgow, GA – Maria Folau, WA – Chelsea Pitman, C – Kelly Altmann, WD – Beth Cobden, GD – Layla Guscoth, GK – Shamera Sterling
Vixens starting seven:
GS – Caitlin Thwaites, GA – Tegan Philip, WA – Liz Watson, C – Kate Moloney, WD – Renae Ingles, GD – Jo Weston, GK – Emily Mannix
Match report source: Suncorp Super Netball