The netball team have started the 2019/20 season with an historic win over Oldham Sixth Form College, beating them for the first time in two years! Loreto hosted the ever-strong Oldham side and earned the well-deserved victory, after 60-minutes of intense match play.

The game was closely contested from the outset, with the score finishing level at 9-9 after the first quarter. Loreto looked impressive from the start, implementing the set plays and structures that they had learnt in training into the match play. Grace O’Shaunessy started the game at goal shooter – already a successful footballer, Grace’s athleticism and sporting ability earned her a place in the starting line-up. The attack was slick and the defensive unit of Isabelle Tyler, Jasmine McAvoy and Giselle Yeboah were impenetrable.

Some minor changes were made to Loreto’s line-up in the second quarter, with Kemi Onasanya (who would finish the game as player of the match) moving position to match up against a tough opponent, in the form of an England U19 player. Emily Brocklebank also moved into goal shooter, displaying great tactical awareness and perfect shooting technique. Loreto continued their impressive form, winning the quarter 7-4.

The third quarter highlights how outstanding Loreto’s defence were, with Oldham only managing to score two goals. The defensive trio of Olivia Hickey, Jasmine McAvoy and Giselle Yeboah were a force to be reckoned with, forcing Oldham to make some uncharacteristic mistakes and missed shots. Jasmine McAvoy particularly stood out during this quarter, adding to her intercept tally and earning her the respect of her teammates by being voted ‘Players’ Player of the match’. At the opposite end of the court, the attacking end were relentless. Lydia Forster supplied the shooting duo of Kemi Onasanya and Freya Coggins with some magnificent passes and they made no mistake about scoring. Grace McAvoy was as brilliant as ever in the middle, being the link player through the court, she was tenacious in defence and unwavering in attack.

The fourth and final quarter saw more changes made, ensuring every player took to the court. Daisy Shea came on at WD and immediately made an impact, forcing her opposition into unforced errors straight away, providing Loreto with ample opportunity to capitalise. Loreto lost the final quarter 9-12, but this did not affect their ability to play with confidence and see the game out.

Loreto were magnificent from the first whistle and remained clinical throughout. Fluent attacking play and unrelenting defence was unstoppable at times and proved too much for the Oldham side.

The final score finished Loreto 32 – OSFC 26.

Squad: Giselle Yeboah, Jasmine McAvoy, Isabelle Tyler, Olivia Hickey, Daisy Shea, Grace McAvoy, Kemi Onasanya (POTM), Lydia Forster, Freya Coggins, Emily Brocklebank and Grace O’Shaunessy.