Netball: Pulse consolidate second place in ANZ Premiership with three-goal win over Stars

The Pulse have returned to winning ways in netball’s ANZ Premiership with a 46-43 victory over the Stars to consolidate second place on the standings.

Holding their composure to the last minute, the Pulse netted an important win, with hosting rights to the grand final still in their sights.

The defensive duo of Kelly Jackson and Parris Mason kept the visitors busy in Porirua, while the arrival of Tiana Metuarau at goal attack in the second half injected some spark and momentum into the home side’s attack.

It took until the fourth quarter for the Pulse to pull clear of a gritty Stars unit at Te Rauparaha Arena.

They looked to have the game in control before repelling a late surge, eventually winning by a margin of three goals.

Metuarau renewed her links with Whitney Souness and Claire Kersten in the Pulse midcourt while bringing confidence to young goal shooter Martina Salmon.

Relentless work from Stars defenders Kate Burley and Holly Fowler upset the smooth running of the Pulse frontline throughout the contest, with the match evenly balanced at 22-19 in the favour of the home side at halftime.

Stars midcourter Emma Thompson’s connection with Stars shooter Maia Wilson was excellent with some deft passes around the long reach of Kelly Jackson but the visitors struggled to make the most of key scoring opportunities.

Pulse skipper Kelly Jackson said it was a relief to bounce back from last week’s extra-time loss to the Tactix.

“That was a bit of a grind, defensively they were in everything and possibly we were a bit guilty of trying to force things too much,” Jackson said.

“We just really wanted to put our foot down, it was an arm wrestle throughout the whole match and a matter of who was going to break first.”

The Tactix lead the standings after 11 rounds of the competition on 30 points, with the Pulse two points back, well clear of the rest of the field.

Shooting stats

Pulse:

Martina Salmon 33/41 (80 percent)

Tiana Metuarau 6/7 (86 percent)

Crystal Maro 5/6 (83 percent)

Kiana Pelasio 2/4 (50 percent)

Stars:

Maia Wilson 27/29 (93 percent)

Monica Falkner 9/12 (75 percent)

Amorangi Malesala 7/9 (78 percent)

ANZ Fans’ Player of the Match: Claire Kersten

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

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