BY NATHAN DOLE
THE clash of 2022 grand finalists, Maiden Gully YCW and Mitiamo carries match of the day status in Saturday’s third round of A-grade netball in the Bendigo Bank Loddon Valley Football Netball League.
Maiden Gully YCW Eagles will have home-court advantage at Marist College Bendigo for this duel with the Superoos.
Last September it was the Eagles who soared to a 61-53 victory to claim the A-grade title and deny the Laura Hicks-coached Mitiamo back-to-back premierships.
This season it’s Adam Boldiston who is coaching Maiden Gully YCW after the successful run led by Christie Griffiths.
Maiden Gully YCW won every quarter on its way to a 61-29 victory at Bridgewater last Saturday.
Tia Reaper is in hot form in mid-court and Tia Webb, best on court in last year’s grand final and Helen Ward medallist as league best and fairest, will again test Mitiamo’s defence.
The Superoos are back on court after the bye.
Mitiamo marked a 72-37 victory on its court at John Forbes Oval in the round one showdown with Bridgewater.
Another big match on Saturday will be at Marong’s Malone Park where the Panthers face the unbeaten Newbridge.
The Sue Borserio-coached Marong hit back from a first-round loss at Maiden Gully to win 73-21 at home against Inglewood.
It’s a big test for the Selina Holland-coached Newbridge which has beaten Calivil United and Bears-Lagoon Serpentine in the first two weeks.
In last Saturday’s play, Newbridge dominated to score a 53-16 win in the Bears’ den at Gadsden Finance Serpentine Reserve.
Inglewood and Bridgewater will be desperate to take the points in their match on the Blues’ court at Dissy Machinery Oval.
Jointly coached by Helen Ward and Dianne Wayman, Inglewood marked its return to the A-grade competition by scoring a 47-35 win at home against BLS in round one.
The Inglewood Blues could not stop Marong’s charge to victory last Saturday.
It’s been a tough start for the Aimie Brown-coached Bridgewater which has faced two of the competition’s best, Mitiamo and Marong so far.
Pyramid Hill is at home at Mitchell Park to take on Bears-Lagoon Serpentine.
The Bulldogs won 38-25 in their first game of the season at Calivil’s Recreation Reserve.
Calivil United has the bye.
Standings in the Loddon Valley FNL’s A-grade netball competition:
Newbridge 173 per cent, 8 points; Maiden Gully YCW Eagles 153, 8; Mitiamo 194, 4; Marong 155, 4; Pyramid Hill 152, 4; Inglewood 62, 4; Calivil United 80, 0; Bears-Lagoon Serpentine 51, 0; Bridgewater 49, 0.