Surrey Storm Netball took a huge win on the road at Wasps Netball on Monday evening to give them a much needed boost in the race for the top 4.
Katy Holland returned to the Storm starting 7 after recovering from an injury, which boosted her side towards a 64-70 win at the Ricoh Arena.
It didn’t take Storm long to gain their first advantage of the tie, taking a single goal lead thanks to a turnover opportunity created by Naida Hutchinson. Katy Harris netted two in a row and suddenly Storm had a 3 goal cushion at 4-7. Wasps regained focus to create opportunities of their own cut were nowhere near clinical enough in the shooting circle, allowing Holland and Hutchinson to collect a number of stray shots. Megan Craig was shooting effortlessly with little pressure, and the visitors lead 12-20 after the first quarter.
The opening exchanges of Q2 saw goals on the centre pass until Hutchinson got a tip on a Rachel Dunn rebounding shot, allowing Storm to extend their lead to 10 goals at 15-25. Despite this both sides were evenly matched throughout the quarter until the momentum swung in Wasps’ favour late on, but Storm maintained their defensive pressure and held a 30-36 lead at half time.
Scarlett Williams was introduced to the game at WD to kick off Q3 and immediately flew in with an interception, giving Storm the chance to restore an 8 goal lead. A handful of attacking errors for Storm put a stop to their full flow of goals midway into the quarter as again Wasps built their confidence and dragged the Storm lead down to just 3 goals! Bethany Sutherland returned to the the court at GD to change up the defence, which put a Storm to the Wasps attack and allowed Storm to push their lead to 44-52 at the end of the third.
Tamsin Greenway came on at the start of the 4th quarter to face her old side and add experience to the Wasps attack and her impact was felt immediately as the lead was quickly down to 6 goals. Coach Tania Hoffman made further changes by bringing Mikki Austin on at C to make her return from injury and restoring Holland to GD, but still Wasps chipped away at the advantage. With 4 minutes to go Surrey lead by just 4 goals and the pressure was on, but the cool as a cucumber Hutchinson was there with a huge interception late on to kill off any chance of a Wasps comeback, and Storm returned south with a vital 64-70 victory to creep back into the top 4.
Storm host Sirens at the Sports Park this Saturday evening (27th, 7pm centre-pass) for their final home game of the 2017 season and another must win tie if they are to reach the Superleague Final Four in Manchester next month.
Player of the Match: Naida Hutchinson
Storm starting 7 vs Wasps:
GK – Hutchinson
GD – Holland
WD – Sutherland
C – Parsons
WA – Lees
GA – Harris
GS – Craig
Changes for Storm – Williams to WD, Sutherland to GD (Q3), Austin to C, Holland to GD (Q4)
Wasps starting 7 vs Storm:
GK – Huckle
GD – Reid
WD – May
C – Flanagan
WA – Msomi
GA – Haythornthwaite
GS – Dunn