It has been a fantastic start to the 2017/2018 Netball Season, there has been some outstanding performances and plenty of areas highlighted during match play, that have created an ‘eager to learn’ ethos at training sessions. We got off to a slow start against Withington girls at our first Saturday fixture with some heavy losses across some of the year groups, particularly for the year 7 A squad. Tilly Y (Year 7 captain) put in a strong performance but the experience and determination of the Withington side lead to our first defeat. Since then the Year 7 squad have worked extremely hard in training, they have been enthusiastic and keen to learn and as a result gone from strength to strength and secured some amazing victories against teams such as Bradford Grammar and Loreto.
The year 8 squad have also had some great performances, defensively they have persisted with the centre pass defence strategies and made some game changing interceptions, particularly against Lymm High School where the score finished 9-7 to AGGS. Lucy B has shot consistently in every game and has become a key player for this squad and I know if they continue to train hard and put into practice during matches what they have learnt in training they will only grow stronger and have potential success at U14 National schools next year.
Our year 9 squad have some extremely talented players but have not yet realised their potential. As a squad they perform well as individuals but have yet to bring it together to produce a strong TEAM performance. Our superstar shooters Neave B and Emma B shoot consistently well and their skill level is outstanding. Charlotte T plays with passion and determination in every game and never gives up and is an asset to the team. Defensively Sarah A has improved every week and I know she will continue to work hard and make game changing interceptions. We attended National Schools earlier this term at Bury Grammar School where the team came up against some of the strongest opposition in the country against schools with very strong club links. As a team they gave some great performances and showed glimmers of brilliance, but unfortunately it was not enough to secure them a place in the next round. It did however give this squad a fantastic experience and the determination to ensure they improve for their next opportunity in 2 years’ time.
The year 10 and 11 squads have been training extremely hard and had some great wins so far this season. The year 11 squad were joined by Issy C, Kitty H and Raavi S at the U16 National Schools competition in November where they just missed out on a place in the semi final having only lost to Stockport Grammar and Bolton Girls School. They played some outstanding Netball and they are improving every match.
We have had some super stars emerge through the Manchester Thunder Performance Pathways with Laura M and Niamh H making it onto the Under 17 Squad and Elena N making the U21 squad. A huge achievement. These girls are true role models to every student at AGGS and we are extremely proud of them.