Gallery: Mavericks in the end prove too good for Thunder crowd

PUBLISHED: 15:30 10 February 2009 | UPDATED: 21:56 26 October 2009

Ella Clark

Ella Clark

Co-operative Netball Superleague Mavericks 52 Northern Thunder 30 AFTER an error-strewn shaky start, Mavericks ran out convincing 52-30 winners over Northern Thunder. It was the visitors to Hatfield who started well at the University of Hertfordshire on

Naida Hutchinson in mid-air

Co-operative Netball Superleague

Mavericks 52 Northern Thunder 30

AFTER an error-strewn shaky start, Mavericks ran out convincing 52-30 winners over Northern Thunder.

Louisa Brownfield with the ball for Mavericks

It was the visitors to Hatfield who started well at the University of Hertfordshire on Saturday.

Credit must be given to Northern Thunder's tenacity in the opening 15 minutes, although the opportunities the galleria Mavericks created by the work rate of Karen Atkinson, Stef Bello, Hazel Schofield and Naida Hutchinson were not capitalised upon.

The feeding of Gemma Wiseman and movement in the circle of Michelle Hall and Louisa Brownfield was not gelling to their usual high standard.

This meant the Hatfield-based Mavericks lacked potency.

Nevertheless, they were only two down at the end of the first quarter thanks to the pressure Hutchinson placed on the shooting of Karen Grieg.

Thankfully, the Thunder player only scored six from her 11 scoring chances.

A strong vocal input from captain Karen Atkinson and the introduction of Michaella McFarlane, the 18-year-old England U19 and U21 player, at wing attack in the second quarter helped steady the attack.

The passionate Mavericks took charge in this period with better timing, neater feeding and crisper movement.

This gave them an eight-goal run that Northern Thunder were unable to recover from.

Mavericks converted their full court defensive pressure into goals at the Herts Sports Village.

A dominant second half was the key to the home side's success.

Birthday girl Ella Clark came into the Mavericks attack in the third quarter at goal attack.

Brownfield moved to goal shooter and Karen Atkinson to wing attack, with Chrissy Fitzgerald providing stability in the mid court.

Mavericks had found some rhythm at last and won the quarter convincingly 15-5.

Stef Bello shone at wing defence and the fast breaks of Hutchinson from the back ensured clean ball for her side.

At times Hazel Schofield drove through the mid-court uncontested.

Mavericks head coach Kendra Slawinski needed to make changes in the final quarter as Ella Clark was unwell.

She was replaced at goal attack by Brownfield and Michelle Hall re-entered the game at shooter.

Brownfield, playing at goal attack for the first and fourth quarters and at shooter for the other two, nailed 34 of her 38 attempts for an 89 per cent success rate.

Mavericks finished the game in comfortable fashion, netting five unanswered goals to win 52-30.

On Monday Mavericks are away to Leeds Carnegie in the league.

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