Prices goal keep and final MVP Holly Chandler puts pressure on Jacks goal shoot Rayna Olsen in Sunday's final. Photo: Melissa Edmonds-Whale.

Prices win final thriller


It took more than 70 minutes of tense, physical and dramatic netball, but Prices are Nelson’s premier champions for 2018.

Prices ended Jacks unbeaten run to claim the title in an extra-time thriller at Saxton Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

On the back of an outstanding defensive effort from Holly Chandler, Dayna Whiting and Tess Eden, Prices held on to register a stunning 43-41 upset.

Prices captain Shar Lowe says it was a roller-coaster of a final. “I’m very happy, it definitely could have gone either way, but I’m absolutely stoked we managed to pull it off.”

Heading into extra-time, Shar says the message was to play boring, sensible netball and not throw the ball away. “I’m just so proud of my girls, our defence was amazing today, they are the reason we came out on top.”

Holly Chandler snatched the game’s first intercept, the first of many from the dynamic young goal keep.

An uncharacteristic first miss from Shar Lowe put Prices on the back foot as Jacks surged out to a five-goal lead, shooters Hannah Mead and Rayna Olsen looking in ominous form inside the circle.

Prices looked flustered early on as they looked to settle its nerves, Shar eventually netting her first goal after almost five minutes.

The goal clicked the girls into gear as Shar found her radar and the duo of Dayna and Holly started to cause havoc for Jack’s attack.

Prices eventually squared the ledger midway through the second, before taking the lead for the first time.

Rayna Olsen again succumbed to a calf injury, making way for Ani Waitai for just her second premier appearance this season.

However, Jacks showed why they had yet to drop a game all season, Ani bringing Jacks back to 25 apiece.

Kirsty Thompson, fresh off her Super Club appearance with the Singapore Sneakers, began to make her presence felt, combining beautifully with captain Jess Drummond on attack as Jacks stretched its lead to three with less than five to play.

Holly’s relentless defence kept Prices in the contest and Jacks were soon dealt another blow, losing wing attack Bayley Templeton to a leg injury.

A goal to Prices star shooter Shar Lowe right at the end of regulation time squared the scores at 35-35, sending the storied rivals to overtime. The pace and intensity went up a notch, as did the atmosphere as the teams entered extra time.

Rayna returned to the shooters circle and evened the honours at 41-41 as the 10-minute period expired, a two-goal advantage required to end the game. A crucial intercept from Holly allowed Chelsea Brooks to sink the match winner as Prices prevailed 43-41.

Following the match, Holly capped her sensational season by being named premier MVP, most improved premier player and the MVP of the final.

Jacks captain Jess Drummond was “gutted” following the loss.

“Very disappointed, we should have had it in that first few minutes of extra-time, but just a few crucial errors gave it away.”

Jess was making no excuses, saying the side had prepared for the possibility of injuries throughout the week. “They just outdid us.”