Young Eagles into grand final

MAFFRA’S under 17s side moved into the Gippsland League netball grand final after a comfortable win over Wonthaggi at Moe at the weekend.

The Eagles won the preliminary final relatively convincingly, cruising at the final whistle with a 40-54 win over the minor premiers notched on the board.

Maffra goal shooter Abbey Pleydell starred under the ring, slotting goal after goal with precision and moving well, despite plenty of pressure.

Emma Allman and Maddie Davis were a winning combination, capably holding down the midcourt — Davis in particular out-played her opponents and fed around the ring with perfect timing.

The Eagles will defend their 2017 premiership when they face Traralgon at Morwell on Saturday.

Coach Taylah Ballinger was pleased with the efforts of every player on the team, and said the team held their nerve throughout.

“We have come along way as a team and are starting to work well together,” she said.

“Our defenders weregood, Ella (Schacht) got a fair few rebounds.

“We were up by nine at three quater time, but I ensured we kept up our defensive pressure and extended the lead.

“Our defensive pressure by all players allowed us to have more shots at goal.”

Ballinger hoped to continue the team’s confidence into this weekend’s grand final, adding the players were all feeling excited.

“Some of the players haven’t ever played in a grand final so I think they are really keen,” she said.

“I’m confident our game plan will get us over the line.”

IN A grade, Moe have pushed through the preliminaries, upsetting minor premier Morwell by four goals.

The Lions held on by the skin of their teeth to snatch the win, 43-47.

Moe will face a formidable Traralgon side in the grand final this weekend.

Moe defeated Morwell 42-14 in B grade, and Traralgon overcame Wonthaggi 38-24 in C grade.

Sale will play Bairnsdale and Leongatha in the under 15 and 13 grand final respectively. Bairnsdale defeated Drouin 30-20 in the under 15s, and Leongatha held off Wonthaggi in the under 13s, winning 22-20.

Saturday at Morwell Recreation Reserve:

A grade: Traralgon v Moe, 3pm.

B grade: Traralgon v Moe, 1.30pm.

C grade: Maffra v Traralgon, 12.15pm.

Under 17s: Traralgon v Maffra, 11am.

Under 15s: Sale v Bairnsdale, 9.45am.

Under 13s: Sale v Leongatha, 8.30am.