Storm sweep Leeds aside
01 March 2011
A third full house at Surrey Sports Park saw a third Superleague win on the bounce for Surrey Storm, who beat visitors Leeds Carnegie 77-49 in a high scoring thriller to cement their top four league position.
Mary Beardwood was back at the helm for this Fiat Superleague Sky fixture, and with only one player out of contention for selection - Fran Plom with a hip injury, the Head Coach was spoilt for choice when it came to naming her 7.
A familiar starting line up took to the court, and played hard from the outset. After an initial flurry from the shooting pair of Dunn and Cosentino, and a great interception from Greenway, both teams fell into the trap of making some early mistakes. Leeds found themselves with their only lead of the game at 8 minutes, something Storm soon rectified, taking the quarter in style with a customary Dunn long bomb at the 1st Quarter whistle. Storm led after 15 minutes, 17 - 12.
No changes for either side after the first break, allowed Storm's defence to show their skill against a tenacious visiting attack, Walker at Goal Shooter ensuring Reid and Seaton were kept busy throughout. A Leeds injury time allowed both teams to regroup before a Desmond interception and some Cosentino magic took Storm's lead up to 35 - 24 at half time.
In a similar move to the game in Scotland the week before, Storm used the opportunity of a lead to introduce Lucy Adams to the Centre bib, bringing Katy Holland on at Keeper (giving Reid a run at GD), and pushing Trippick back to WD. A Dunn flurry of misses under the post was soon rectified with some impressive long shots, however Leeds never stopped pushing and were rewarded with some smooth passages of play. Another couple of stylish interceptions from Cosentino and Adams pushed Storms lead even further, leaving the visitors 14 down at the end of Q3.
Bello took to the court in the last quarter, and quickly found her form with Holland and Reid in defence, turning over a lot of balls. The sell out crowd was treated to some slick attack from the home side, and with only a few minutes left, Storm continued to work effectively all the way down the court. Unfortunately Leeds shooter Jo Walker suffered an ankle injury in the dying seconds of the match, before Storm took the win with their highest amount of goals scored in a game this season: 77 - 49.
Speaking after the match, Head Coach Mary Beardwood was quick to congratulate both sides - "We have witnessed an incredibly high scoring match tonight, so credit must go to both teams. With this in mind, we do have some things to work on, however to get 77 goals in a game must remind people of our performances of last season and exactly what Surrey Storm are capable of!
"I am pleased to say that this week's Gidden Place Most Valuable Player Award goes to Gemma Cosentino, who was indispensable on court tonight, shooting brilliantly and supporting her team in attack beautifully."
The Sky Sports pundits however, awarded their Player of the Match to Storm and England Shooter, Rachel Dunn, who was extremely pleased with her 91% shooting accuracy. Dunn said, "It is always nice to come off court with a win, and even better when you feel like you have played and shot well. Congratulations to Gemma too, it's a great winning evening for Storm."
Everyone at Storm was particularly pleased with the win, as they were joined by a few celebrity fans on the night; Football Pundit and TV Presenter Tim Lovejoy, who brought along his netball playing daughters Grace and Rose for their first ever Superleague game, and Harlequins and England Rugby Union star Ugo Monye, who also trains at Surrey Sports Park alongside Storm with Harlequins!
Tickets for Storm's next home match versus Loughborough Lightning on Saturday 5 March, 7.00pm are still available so don't miss out. You can buy your ticket now by calling the Storm Box Office on 01483 443333, at Surrey Sports Park or online here.