Written by Tan Zhe Ren
Edited by Cheryl Tan
After overcoming the odds in the preliminaries, KE’s Netball girls advanced into the semi-finals. There, they faced a daunting task of having to overcome Eusoff Hall who had breezed past their opponents in the preliminary group stages. Undeterred by the magnitude of the challenge awaiting them, KE set out to give EH a run for their money.
EH started the match on the front foot by taking an early 1-0 lead. However, their second attempt at goal was thwarted by an acrobatic lunge by GK Sarah. KE took advantage of this interception to thread a pass to GS Wanqi who equalized.
EH retook the lead during their next attack only to see that being cancelled out yet again by the prolific Wanqi. After some tight defensive work by KE, the referee deemed GD Claire to have committed a foul thereby giving EH a free throw, and the lead once again at 3-2.
The remainder of the quarter saw KE being pushed back by endless waves of yellow and maroon as the EH girls’ plays broke down a resolute KE defence. It was not until the final 30 seconds of the quarter that KE mustered another attempt at goal, which Wanqi converted after a good interception and pass by Victoria.
Score at the end of the first quarter – 7-3 in favour of EH
Tactical changes were made and the KE players took to the court once again, determined to reduce the deficit. Their determination manifested itself in a quick goal as a bounced pass by Pearly evaded all but Wanqi, who converted with ease.
Being only 3 points behind EH, KE surged forward trying to catch back. KE’s girls ran their hearts out and made pass after pass, only to see their attempts thwarted by a sturdy EH defence.
In going forward, space was created at the back, putting them at risk of counterattacks by EH. Despite their best efforts, EH capitalized on those opportunities to hit KE for 3 more without reply. 10-4 the score.
Against the run of play, Dawne managed to pull a goal back for KE to keep the deficit at a manageable 5 points.
A series of good defences kept KE in the game. However, EH eventually managed to find a way past KE’s organized defence to end the quarter with a score of 16-6.
The 3rd quarter resumed with EH increasing their lead by yet another point. KE replied through two pieces of brilliance within 45 seconds from Dawne who first scored from a seemingly impossible angle before assisting Wanqi after a faking a shot. Could a KE fightback be on the line?
Unfortunately that was not to be the case as EH hit KE for another 5 more points, with KE responding only twice – both through Wanqi.
Score at the end of the 3rd quarter – 22-10 in favour of EH.
As the 4th quarter began, KE knew that it was sink or swim. An all-out attack was adopted which paid handsome dividends as KE scored 4 times in the space of 3 minutes while only conceding one. The scoreboard read 23-14 as KE supporters cheered on their girls emphatically and passionately.
The ever-so reliable Claire continued her dominance in defence by putting her body on the line to retrieve possession and intercept passes, which gave the rest of the team the confidence to push higher up the court.
The following minute brought two goals apiece for both KE and EH, bringing the score to 25-16.
As the game clock counted down the seconds to the final two minutes, KE knew that their hopes of an upset had been extinguished. Nevertheless, they forged ahead, trying to reduce the goal difference as a matter of pride.
Final score KE 17, EH 27.
Photos courtesy of KE Vision