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    YOUNG GUN: Ararat’s Tayla Borrelli is proving a solid contributor each week. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

Wimmera netballers launch into second half

The entire June 23, 2021 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

Wimmera netball league teams will start a long trek towards finals when they push into the second half of a home-and-away season on Saturday.

The competition remains close and exciting with considerable pressure on teams sitting in a top five to retain their positions.

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One of the major highlights this weekend will be when Stawell stalwart Tracey Dark lines up for her 450th club game for the Warriors.

Dark has long been a prominent player and profound Warriors leader.

A Grade games this week involve a resumption of a long rivalry between Stawell and Ararat at Stawell.

Stawell is sitting fourth and Ararat seventh and a young Rats team, despite going down 41-47 last week, has been building momentum.

Delaney McLoughlan and Tayla Borrelli are playing solid games each week against tough defenders.

Stawell adapted to cover the loss of centre-court players Jemma Clarkson and Madi Taylor last week but left its run too late to go down 46-48 to Horsham Saints. Clarkson could also be out this week.

Ararat needs a win to stay in touch with the top five, while a loss to Stawell could result in the Rats slipping down the ladder.

Ninth-placed Nhill takes on second-placed Horsham and Nhill will find it tough again this week, against the Demons.

The Tigers, who lost 34-58 to Minyip-Murtoa last week, are another young team and will hopefully use this even and competitive season to build  skills and experience.

Horsham star Emma Buwalda is back from injury and played out a full game last week.

Dimboola and Horsham Saints meet in a clash involving sixth and fifth-placed teams respectively.

The teams are sitting on 16 points on the ladder, with Dimboola coming off a tough 39-66 game against Horsham while Saints held on to a hard-earned win against Stawell.

The teams match up well and it will come down to another battle of the goal ends.

Saints defenders Kiana Marshman and Elly Barnett take on Nicole Polycarpou and Billie-Jo Barber, while at the other end the match-up might feature Holly Ross and Olivia Jorgensen trying to restrict Abby Hallam and Jess Farrow.

This game could go down to the wire.

Warrack Eagles take on Minyip-Murtoa, with Minyip-Murtoa scoring its first win last week and taking confidence into the clash.

The Eagles have a good mix of youth and experience and coach Ashlynn McKenzie would be pleased with how their season is going

Burras Georgia McLennan, Maddison Morgan and Molly Fagan will need to play smart netball against Eagles defenders Jessica Kelly and Jenna Schulz, who love nothing more than intercepting wayward passes.

The Eagles should come away with the win.

Wimmera league teams will take part in Northern Zone Association championships on Sunday.

The league is sending a 13 and under team, coached by Ant Toet, 15 and under, Linley Arnold-Wardle and 17 and under, Pauline Butler.

Results: Horsham d Dimboola 66-39, Horsham Saints d Stawell 48-46, Minyip-Murtoa d Nhill 58-34, Southern Mallee Giants d Ararat 47-41.