By Claire Macuz and Jordan Witte
It was the game that would tell where the Metro Jets Division 6 side was at.
Playing the VU Vultures in a must-win game, the Jets took the court expecting a fight to the death against the Vultures who sat just one spot below them on the ladder and held the same amount of points.
Missing key defender Tristan Comans with a foot injury and goal shooter Melissa Jones to illness, the Jets took the court with two additions to the squad and confidence with the experience of Kelly Wood coming into goals, pairing well with Scarlett Padden.
Padden and Wood scored unanswered goals left, right and centre, developing their relationship well within the circle and providing constant movement for the Jets’ midcourters to work with.
Wood provided unseen experience in the circle, dictating ball movement and Padden’s drives to explicitly control the match from her end of the court.
Accurate shooting was a major element in the Jets’ win, scoring off 94% of centre passes, and managing to force turnovers by the Vultures, providing an additional 15 scoring opportunities for the Jets.
Co-Captain Georgia Tymms was dynamic in centre, controlling her drives forward of midcourt and increasing her defensive pressure in her individual game. That same defensive pressure by Tymms provided a flow on effect for Brooke Zagami in wing defence, allowing the Jets to deliver the ball fluently from defensive throw-ins all the way to conversion down the other end.
“Something which has lacked in previous games has been our defensive pressure,” noted coach Claire Macuz.
“Tonight I felt that we moved as one defensive unit, regardless of whether we were playing one-on-one or implementing our zone defence,” she added.
In their much-needed win against a similarly placed team, the Jets proved to themselves first and foremost that their hard work and commitment is paying off.
Stepping into goal defence and centre at times, newcomer Asha Roche provided agility and speed within the circle, coordinating well with defenders Sarah Flanagan and Morelle Bull.
Flanagan and Bull, despite playing multiple positions throughout the season to date, increased the proximity of their defensive pressure, playing hard body-on-body and forcing 10 turnovers between them for the match.
Coordinating flow on effects from the defensive third, Flanagan, Bull and Roche released passes which have not been a recurring theme to date. Passes have struggled to hit targets in previous rounds, yet didn’t seem to be an issue at any point on Tuesday night.
Wing attack and co-captain Tanya Beaumont struggled to gain momentum in the midcourt, playing on a physical defender, yet proved to be yet again confident in her passing ability despite lack of free movement.
The Jets controlled each quarter of the match, coming out strong winners at the final siren, defeating the Vultures 43-25.
Comforting signs displayed during this match are proving to the Jets’ players that their hard work ong skills and systems are paying off.
The Jets line-up against ninth-placed WP Lakeside this Tuesday night, and will be keen to replicate the performance of last week’s win.