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25 May, 2023

Netballers get their season underway in new competition

By Kristy Cosier

The Gilgandra Panthers enjoyed some valuable game time on a beautiful sunny Saturday, with the netballers getting in their first uninterrupted round of netball in Dubbo. It was a big moment for the girls and while there were a few early nerves, they soon settled into the match-ups. The junior league teams travelled to Coonamble to take on the Bears and the Baradine Mapgies in the group 14 competition with the tricolours certainly making their intentions clear for the season in the older competitive age groups.

The panthers are competing in five age groups in the netball, a great effort for their first year in the Dubbo competition. The U10s were runners up in their maiden round and the seniors improved tenfold from their game last week. While they came second on the score board the girls are starting to settle into the game and are growing in confidence. There was some excitement on the courts for the U12s and the U11s who took home the win 28-8.

In Coonamble it was the U14s and 12s who kicked into gear and finished on top for the day. Coach Carr’s U14s are starting the season in fine form, bringing home the win with an impressive 65- 0 win. The team played very well together but it is Cobie Carr who is proving hard to control, troubling the defence all day and scoring three tries, a great individual effort.

The U12s both had two games this week, with Coonamble and Baradine fielding their individual sides. It was Gilgandra who made their mark with both teams coming home with the wins and proving to be very little between the club sides. Coach Bugmy’s U12 Brown were a bit light on for numbers and were extremely grateful for the help from Abi Howard and Dallas Burrell who stepped up from the 10s. Special mention to Dallas who had an unbelievable day, scoring tries in the U12s and taking home their panther of the week. Brown came home winners 24-16 against the Bears, with great tackling and strong defence. Second game against Baradine the team made some great tackling and runs sealing the 40-6 win and Clayton Wheatley taking out player of the match.

U12 White weren’t to be outdone, with the match-up against Baradine going Gil’s way 26-6 and a solid team effort. The second game against Coonamble was played with much intensity, fuelled by front rower Akhiro Baker who laid down the law in bush footy! Great line speed by Matari Towney and Jock Mills put the panthers in space, the organisation came from veteran skipper Mitch Cosier who kept up the intensity, pushing the forwards in Khyran O'Neil and Connor Jones-Copelin who were damaging all game. The middle was controlled by an awesome talking effort by Ryder Larkin and Jagger Hazelton. Massive shout out to the back up support by the rest of Gilgandra’s U12 white team who all lifted and showed that they are a team on the hunt in 2023, sealing the win 26-10.

Details for the U10 games are a little light on but a special mention has to go to Dallas Burrell who backed up superbly in his own U10 game after playing with the 12s, scoring another four tries. Amazing effort and we are pretty sure slept soundly that night!

 Coach Riley’s under eights two games were both hard match-ups however the panthers are really starting to develop their skills and work together as a team. The first game against Coonamble was a draw, Gilgandra’s tackling was superb with Taj Hughes, Wirriana Marshall, Charley Hazelton and Liam Cosier leading the way with some strong defence. Azariah Smith-Nixon is improving every game as is Daniel Smith.

Lochie Thomas was the player of the game with some good tackles and scoring two tries. The second game against Baradine was the Bella Hammond show who tackled everything and had some strong runs, helping the team to an impressive win five tries to three. James Riley, Tom Mudford, Levi Burrell and Ricky Bennett had their usual great games. Xavier Connolly, Jaxen Altus and Hugh Harvey ran hard every time they got the ball and Kordel Weldon is a little superstar.

The under six legends had a great time in the sun, also playing two games with Tiggy Dixon this week’s panther.

Panthers of the week

U9 – Indiana Jeffrey
U10 – Estelle Hazelton
U11 – Indy Thomas
U12 – Zaliah Brown
Seniors – Ruby Lamb

U6 – Tiggy Dixon
U8 – Lochie Thomas and Bella Hammond
U10 Brown – Joey Lamb
U10 White – Braxten and Jackson Coad
U12 Brown – Dallas Burrell & Clayton Wheatley
U12 White – Mitch Cosier
U14 – Cobie Carr

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