Rising Stars may be having a good year but didn’t have a good outing on the court last weekend.
Rising Stars A lost 23-36 to Bodden Town Eclipzers A last Saturday at the netball courts at Truman Bodden Sports Complex.
Both teams play in division one of the Cayman Islands Netball Association senior women’s league.
The first half of the game saw both sides feeling each other out. The passing was cautious and both were hesitant to make mistakes.
Moreover Referee Molly-Ann Moore would blow her whistle for a barrage of infractions, big and small, as she did her best to keep the game in order.
Nevertheless both sides were keen to work the wings. RS winger Patrice Boothe had plenty to do as she did her best to link passes from her defense to the attacking players.
Meanwhile BTE countered with a two-pronged wing presence with wingers Keneisha Morris and Carolee Boston keeping the passing on target.
The early tentativeness soon wore off and from there BTE made its move. Clearly the side came out into the match with a game plan and had it well in motion by the second quarter.
Goal Shooter Janice Morrison was the focal point of the offense as almost all the passes went into her hands. Her tall, large frame allowed her to get into scoring position easily and caused plenty of problems for RS Goal Keeper Judy Jackson.
To her credit, Jackson stuck with Morrison throughout the match but her lack of size would be her downfall every time.
When Morrison missed Goal Attack Sharmaine Anderson swooped in for the loose balls and got good looks at the basket herself.
Anderson had a seemingly endless supply of energy, throwing herself at passes and flailing around for wayward balls.
The result was a barrage of points for BTE. By half-time the side had amassed around 20 points, high by netball standards.
Meanwhile RS struggled to keep pace. The side was short on subs, with Nordia Ricketts being the lone reserve. However the result of that was the excess minutes for Centre Wendy Fisher and Goal Defense Renee Lindo took their toll.
Fisher and Lindo played well in spurts during the game but it was clear that they would not be able to keep up with an athletic BTE side deep in the game.
Thus the half-time break was as a relief in more ways than one. The RS coaches did their best to encourage the players and talk strategy but most of their attention was making sure their players got a good breather.
Meanwhile BTE talked of tightening their defensive stance. The side felt it was leaving the door open for a RS comeback.
The second half would prove BTE’s fears unfounded. During the half-time break RS discovered one of its players was unable to continue playing due to injury. The team was forced to play the rest of the game short-handed.
That meant RS would be outnumbered at every turn and ultimately overworked. The squad could not play with the energy needed to make a run.
Then again Goal Shooter Tricia Skyers Palacio (who switched to a winger spot in the third quarter) never stopped hustling. She was always in the thick of the action and fought hard for every basket she could make.
A tired but determined Melissa Rankine helped where she could, though often times she would be out-manoeuvred by the likes of Goal Defense Carrie Barrett and Goal Keeper Natasha Henry.
Centre Inia Ricketts and sub Staceyann Smith would steady the BTE side and ensure the result would not be in doubt.
Ricketts was actually a big part of the passing game throughout the match but her smart decisions late would seal it for BTE and doom the RS side.
The next set of games will take place tomorrow at Truman. At 6:30pm BT A takes on Storm A while Storm B battles Rising Stars B.