Papakaio sets tongues wagging

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A familiar powerhouse and an intriguing newcomer provided the talking points after the opening round of North Otago premier netball on Saturday.
While Valley Gold made a familiar winning start in its pursuit of a third straight title, fellow country side Papakaio had tongues wagging after upsetting Waitaki Girls’ High School Wildfire 31-30.
Papakaio fought back from an early five-goal deficit to level the scores at halftime and clung on for its one-point win after a second half that ebbed and flowed.
New coach Steve Gage was pleased his Papakaio side got an early confidence boost.
He said the Papakaio defensive end was consistently strong, and goal attack Robin Williams thrived on some quality ball.
Hannah Johnston was the pick of the Wildfire side, showing her versatility and work ethic at goal attack and wing defence.
Valley Gold, led by tireless wing defence Sarah Newlands, beat the young St Kevin’s Steel team 42-27, while Valley Silver also started the season with a win, beating a promising St Kevin’s Platinum team 36-28.
Waitaki Girls’ High School Lightning Strike produced an excellent team effort to beat Athletic 32-25 after scores were tied 12-12 at halftime.
Kate Lawrence (centre) and Caitlin Judd (wing attack) led from the front with some smooth feeding into goal shoot Taneisha Fifita, while goal attack Molly Hurst was a model of consistency in her premier debut.
Athletic showed plenty of promising signs, and defender Lucy Taupo and centre Blayze Rooney could be well pleased with their efforts.om13netball2