Cats preparing for finals

Chloe Wilson is the leading goal scorer in the RDNL this season. (Shawn Smits)

Tara Murray

Macedon is hoping to have all options covered in the Riddell District Netball League finals.

The Cats sit atop the ladder with two rounds remaining, and have been the standout team this season with just two losses for the year, despite illness and absences.

Having been caught short in finals before, Cats coach Ciara Stewart said the focus had been on looking to cover everything.

“It’s been pretty good and we’re trying lots of new combinations and different options heading into finals.” she said.

“We had all our midcourt out one week against one of the lower sides, so we looked at different things.

“Shanae Brundell is a new girl in the squad. She started as a keeper this season, but she’s now our third goaler.

‘She used to be goaler before the City West Falcons tried her in defence. She’s a tall goaling option.

“Our starting seven are getting time off the court which is a new opportunity, we haven’t always had the ability to do.”

Stewart said they had been training really well and making sure they’ve got all bases covered.

She said this year with injuries and COVID-19, the premiership could be decided by the team with the most depth.

“We’re two games clear [before Saturday’s game against Wallan,], with two games and a bye left,” she said.

“We’ve worked hard for our wins. The first Wallan game we took away a lot of learnings from that game.

“It was the loss that we needed to have. Heading into finals we’ll take a breath and take nothing for granted.

“We were undefeated a couple of years ago and we went out in straight sets.”

Stewart said they had been really pleased with the way Chelsea Kemp had come back from a knee injury and controlled the mid court.

She said the defensive end was also playing well, winning back a lot of balls.

Stewart said the focus to have depth within their squad, wasn’t just with the A-grade side, but also their B and C grade sides. There B-grade and C-grade sides were both sitting in second before the weekend’s matches, while under-19s were sitting in fourth sport.

She said with the unpredictability that has had a major impact this season, there’s still a lot of uncertainty to come.

The Cats lost to Wallan in a top of the table clash on Saturday, 31-29.

For the second time this season, the Cats weren’t at full strength when facing the Cats. Several of their midcourt players were missing due to attending a wedding.