Macedon has been left disappointed by a straight sets exit in the Riddell District Netball League.
Having lost just one game for the regular season, the Cats dropped two in as many weeks to be bundled out of the finals on Sunday by Melton Centrals.
The Cats were left on the back foot with key goaler Chloe Wilson out with illness, which restricted their shooting options.
With a wet court to start the game and a tricky wind, it was which team would handle the conditions better early on.
Centrals’ experience at the goaling end was the key and they opened up a five goal lead at the first break.
It was an even second quarter, before the Cats, who changed their shooting line-up at half-time, hit back late in the third quarter.
When the Cats scored the first goal of the last quarter, scores were level. Centrals found another gear and shot away to win, 33-29.
Cats coach Ciara Stewart said they didn’t play to their potential leading to them exiting the finals earlier than expected.
“We normally kill turnovers but we only had one recovery in the defensive end in the first half,” she said.
“The defenders struggled to adjust and we played an attacking end line-up we hadn’t played all year.
“We lost that game. Credit to Melton for winning, but we definitely had our chances. We’re extremely disappointed to go out in straight sets.”
The biggest difference between the two teams was the shooting percentages and it really hurt the Cats. Centrals shot at 77 per cent making 33 goals from 43 attempts. The Cats could only manage to shoot at 58 per cent, missing 21 shots. Stewart admits not having Wilson in the side made a big difference. Besides Stewart, the other three players in the attacking end were all 19 or under.
“Chloe was a massive hole,” said Stewart.
“We can play together with our eyes closed. We needed to turn the defenders eyes and we couldn’t do that.
“Last time we played Melton, we won by 20. They got on top of us with Tara [Burnip] in goals early on and we then put Chloe and I in there and it just opened.
“Other than against Riddell, Tay [Tayla Hardiman] hasn’t played goals for us and it’s a big ask for her.
“In the end, we said Melton ladies out-netballed us, it wasn’t amazing but they were women who knew what do to when they were stuck.”