The Melbourne Vixens have claimed the first win of the 2018 Suncorp Super Netball season, defeating cross-town rivals Magpies Netball 59-58 in a thrilling contest!
The match against the Magpies, dubbed as #TheBattle, lived up to the hype, with the game coming down to the final seconds.
After a slow first quarter, which the Magpies led 18-17, Vixens coach Simone McKinnis said she wanted the team to be more aggressive out on court.
“We just needed to be more aggressive and have more presence and contest,” McKinnis said.
“We were just a little bit passive and it was about step[ping] up to it and showing a bit more aggression to what we were doing.”
It was a near flawless second quarter which set the Vixens up for the match, outscoring the Magpies 16-9.
With the Vixens holding the lead at half-time, the Magpies were strong out of the blocks to again push the Vixens, reducing the six-goal lead to just two by three-quarter-time.
In a nerve-racking final quarter the lead between the two sides see-sawed, with the Magpies in front with just minutes remaining, before an intercept in the dying seconds from Emily Mannix saw the Vixens finish one-goal victors.
McKinnis said although it was good to get the win, the team still has a lot to learn.
“I think there’s a lot we can learn from that match, because there’s some areas where we weren’t so good. Yeah we enjoyed the win, but it’s a win that actually shows us a lot to learn from.”
Mwai Kumwenda, who was named the Nissan Player of the Match, was a key target for the Vixens under the post, shooting 41 goals from 42 attempts.
With the new rules introduced, the Vixens finish with four points for the win, and one bonus point for the second quarter, taking five points overall.
The Melbourne Vixens will play their second of three home games in a row next Sunday, taking on the NSW Swifts at Margaret Court Arena.