BY NATHAN DOLE
MATCHES which are vital to the premiership aspirations of several A-grade netball teams will be played in Saturday’s 13th round of the Bendigo Bank Loddon Valley FNL season.
The match of the round status is evenly split between Pyramid Hill at home to Marong, and Newbridge up against Bridgewater at Beck Legal Riverside Oval.
It may be a prelude to the qualifying final as the second-placed Pyramid Hill takes on the third-placed Marong at Mitchell Park.
Previous meeting between these teams ended in a 48-all draw at Marong’s Malone Park.
In last Saturday’s play, the Gemma Scott-coached Pyramid Hill scored a 55-32 victory against Bears-Lagoon Serpentine at Gadsden Finance Serpentine Reserve.
The Sue Borserio-coached Marong won a closely-fought contest at Newbridge, 59-53.
Key players in an important win for the Panthers included Mel Oliver, Mia McCrann-Peters and Abby Thompson.
Plenty at stake as Newbridge takes on Bridgewater this Saturday.
Just a goal separated these teams when Bridgewater won 35-34 at home in the fourth round.
The Selina Holland-coached Newbridge starts the day in fifth place, a win and 31 per cent in front of Bridgewater.
Win this contest and the Maroons will strengthen their position in the top five.
The Newbridge attack is brilliantly led by Kym Childs.
In-form players for the Maroons include Jorja Hufer in defence, and Emily Langley in attack.
The Aimie Brown-coached Bridgewater marked a 10-goal win at home against Inglewood last round.
Inglewood is back at Dissy Machinery Oval to take on Mitiamo.
Another huge test for the Helen Ward and Dianne Wayman-coached Blues.
Key players for Inglewood include Grace Christiansen in defence, Abbey Hayes in the centre, and Taya Bartram at goal attack.
Mitiamo worked hard to finish within nine goals of the ladder-leading Maiden Gully YCW at John Forbes Oval last round.
The Superoos were within a goal of the high-flying Eagles last Saturday.
Win this round and the Jen Wilson-coached Superoos would will be third should Marong be beaten.
A talented squad representing Mitiamo includes Laura Hicks and Carly Scholes leading the attack.
Calivil United is at home to take on Bears-Lagoon Serpentine.
The Chelsea Hicks-coached Demons had the bye last round and will be keen to mark win number three.
When these teams met in round four it was the Demons who won 41-27 against the Stacee Burns-coached Bears at Serpentine.
A player to watch for the Bears is Bri Chambers at goal attack.
Maiden Gully YCW has the bye.
Standings in the Loddon Valley FNL A-grade netball competition:
Maiden Gully YCW 174 per cent, 40 points; Pyramid Hill 129, 34; Marong 149, 30; Mitiamo 148, 28; Newbridge 107, 24; Bridgewater 76, 20; Calivil United 78, 8; Inglewood 49, 8; Bears-Lagoon Serpentine 48, 0.