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April 2, 2016 by Surrey Storm

Report: Storm take points in Lightning Battle

Surrey Storm took a giant leap towards the 2016 Vitality Netball Superleague semi-finals with a 52-42 win over Loughborough Lightning at Surrey Sports Park.

Coach Ratnapala welcomed Katt Ainsworth back into her starting 7 for the tie, which proved pivotal from the opening exchanges when the Aussie picked out an interception for Storm to turnover. Lightning replied with one of their own and the scores remained level for most of the quarter, until Storm managed to edge a 2 goal lead at the first break (12-10).

The visitors flew out of the blocks in Q2 to remind Storm of their potential to cause an upset, and it was the girls in purple who built a 3 goal lead at 13-16 thanks to a 1-6 run early on. Surrey quickly pulled it back to 19-all, before retaking the advantage that they would hold at half time…albeit a slender one at 24-23!

Coach Ratnapala rang in the changes for Q3, welcoming Yasmin Parson (WA), Amy Flanagan (WD) and Josie Huckle (GK) to the court, with Hannah Reid moving to GD. Despite the changes, Storm continued to look the sharpest of the two sides. Flanagan looked on good form from the off with an immediate turnover as Storm took the lead to 4 goals at the midway point of the quarter.

Loughborough pegged back late on in Q3 but the hosts still held that single goal lead going into a vital final period (35-34).

Sophia Candappa pushed forward to WA in Q4, with Flanagan moving to C and Ainsworth returning to WD, and it was at this point that Storm really cruised towards the finish line. It didn’t take long for Huckle to enforce enough pressure for a turnover, taking the lead to 7, before Flanagan continued to cause the Loughborough attack problems with her lively movement across the court.

Reid finished off the game with an incredible finger tips interception, leaving the visitors with no hope of a comeback. Storm take the win 52-42 and now need just a single point to book their place in the semi-finals.
Surrey will now enjoy a one week rest before travelling to Cardiff to face the Celtic Dragons on Saturday 9th April (4pm centre-pass).

BRD Events Player of the Match: Amy Flanagan

Storm starting 7:
GK – Reid
GD – Holland
WD – Ainsworth
C – Candappa
WA – Lees
GA – Cookey
GS – Dunn

Changes: Huckle to GK, Reid to GD, Flanagan to WD, Parsons to WA (Q3), Ainsworth to WD, Flanagan to C, Candappa to WA (Q4)

Lightning staring 7:
GK – Trip
GD – Agbeze
WD – Nicholls
C – Panagarry
WA – Joseph
GA – Walker
GS – Proscovia

Changes: Corbin to GA, Massey to WD (Q3), Corbin to GS, Walker to GA (Q4)

Storm shooting stats:
Dunn – 23/27, 85%
Cookey – 29/34, 85%
Team – 52/61, 85%

Lightning shooting stats:
Proscovia – 19/24, 79%
Walker – 15/18, 83%
Corbin – 8/12, 67%
Team – 42/54, 78%

Quarter scores:
Q1 – 12-10
Q2 – 24-23 (12-13)
Q3 – 35-34 (11-11)
Q4 – 52-42 (17-8)

What a start @kholland91! @rach_dunn finishes the turnover and Storm open the scoring #StormLive

— Surrey Storm (@SurreyStorm) April 2, 2016

Another big interception at the right time from @Kattstorm. @rach_dunn finishes 15-17 #StormLive

— Surrey Storm (@SurreyStorm) April 2, 2016

A stunning finger-tips interception from @haitchare!! That one could prove vital! 47-39 to the hosts #StormLive

— Surrey Storm (@SurreyStorm) April 2, 2016

Strength in defence and versatility gives @amyhflanagan the @BRD_Events Player of the Match! @NetballSL #LetsGoStorm

— Surrey Storm (@SurreyStorm) April 2, 2016

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