The Bull Sharks Under 18 side have finished second in the Netball Queensland State Titles, unbeaten until a heartbreaking defeat in the Grand Final.
While the side lost the tournament to the Carina Leagues Club Tigers 37-32, their strong performances led to five Bull Sharks being selected in the Queensland state squad.
How the Grand Final unfolded
Both sides made costly errors in the first quarter but two quick goals in the dying moments gave the Tigers a 9-8 lead over the Bull Sharks.
By half time at Brisbane’s Nissan Arena, Carina had increased their lead to 21-19.
The Bull Sharks regathered in the third quarter and took the lead for the first time.
Errors by the Tigers gave the Bull Sharks an advantage and at three-quarter time the scoreboard stood in Bond’s favour 28-25.
Just when the Bull Sharks appeared to find their footing, they began to unravel in the final quarter.
Some misjudged passes and simple mistakes cost the lead as the clock began working against them.
The Tigers’ goal attack didn’t miss and despite Bond’s best efforts, they couldn’t keep her from getting the ball and building on Carina’s score.
In the final minutes Bond had fought their way back into the game and were still hopeful of turning it around.
Unfortunately, a missed shot at goal proved costly when the Tigers regained control and sealed the deal with their eventual five-goal lead.
When the final whistle blew the scoreboard read 37-32.
What they said
Netball Operations Manager Kim Boland said the Grand Final lapse was in contrast to the Bull Sharks’ overall performance in the tournament.
“While it’s a disappointing final game, it’s certainly not a reflection of how we’ve played over the past four days and I’m really proud of the job they’ve done,” Boland said.
“They fought right till the end and they never gave up.”
On a brighter note
The five Bull Sharks selected in the Queensland Under 19 squad were Kaylin van Greunen, Elka Macaulay, Dakota Newson, Ocean Karekare and Tehya Hyssett.
By the end of December the squad of 32 will be culled down to a final 16 who will then attend the National Titles in 2024.