Warriors made to pay

Vanessa Augustini (Netball Victoria/Grant Treeby)

Tara Murray

The Western Warriors will go back to basics after the most disappointing performance of their short history in the Victorian Netball League championship.

After falling just short against an undefeated Boroondara Express in the previous round, the Warriors were full of confidence heading into their match against the Bendigo Strikers on Wednesday night.

The Warriors though had no answers for the Strikers who had a comfortable 60-45 win.

Warriors coach Kim Bailey was left shellshocked following the performance.

“It was really disappointing after such a good game the week before and losing by only a goal,” she said. “To come out and put that on the court is a bit perplexing. I don’t know what happened.”

Bailey said the Strikers had been on a bit of a roll and that they had played really well. The two sides are the two new teams in the championship competition this year.

She said they had done their homework and it paid off.

“They took our goalers and midcourters out of the game,” she said. “Milly Brock had a good game and we couldn’t stop her.”

Bailey said after a slow start that they had managed to get the margin back to six goals at half time.

The focus was to level the score heading into the final quarter, but they weren’t able to do that.

She said that in a number of the key areas, the Strikers were on top.

“We had 34 negative turnovers, they only had 24,” she said.

“They had 15 intercepts to our six, they were telling things. They had more opportunities.

“We normally shoot in the 90s, we shot at 78 per cent. We could not get it in efficiently to our shooters.”

Kim Borger shot 21 goals for the Warriors, well down on her normal impact.

Bailey said Akira McCormack gave them something different in the circle, but it came too late.

Bailey said they would take a lot out of the game and there were things that they would still need to work on.

“Good teams have sustained good games together,” she said. “We need to do that, we need to be more consistent.

“Hopefully that was just an abnormally. Nothing we did worked.”

Despite the loss, the Warriors, who are in ninth spot, sit four points outside the top four.

It was a tough night for the Warriors under-23 side that led all night against the Strikers before losing 54-53.

Bailey said they had costly turnovers at the wrong times. She said the group needs to get into a winning mindset.

The Falcons next match against the Hawks will be their first at Cobblebank Stadium in Melton on April 28.

Bailey said they were hoping to get a big crowd out to watch them on their home court.

As well as the under-23s and championship side, there will be an exhibition game beforehand.

The action starts at 11.30am.