Surrey Storm were defeated 35-52 against Manchester Thunder on Sunday afternoon despite an improved display from Mikki Austin’s side.
It was even start as both sides battled to seize the initiative in the early stages, with Storm defending well and launching quick attacks to produce a promising start to the match.
Frankie Wells and Karyn Bailey successfully converted their chances to help Storm race into an 11-8 lead after the first 10 minutes, but Manchester Thunder quickly pegged them back to ensure the first quarter ended 11-11.
Thunder carried this momentum beyond the break as a series of clinical attacks propelled them into a 14-21 advantage midway through the second quarter.
Storm were now finding opportunities harder to come by as Thunder intercepted a number of attacks in the final third, and this helped the third-placed side take a 17-30 lead into the half-time break.
After the interval, Mikki Austin and Yasmin Parsons worked hard to instigate some effective attacks which saw Storm record a flurry of early points in the third quarter.
However, Thunder continued their impressive shooting at the other end to quash the chances of a potential Storm comeback. This was despite the best efforts of goalkeeper Alima Priest who produced a series of excellent interceptions.
This meant the score line stood at 28-41 at the end of the third quarter as Thunder maintained their 13-point cushion over Storm.
Storm displayed flashes of their quality as they registered seven points in the final quarter, but Thunder continued to take their chances to secure a 35-52 success.
However, Storm will take plenty of positives from their performance on the day, and they will aim to carry these into their clash with London Pulse in two weeks’ time.