Team Northumbria 48-57 Loughborough Lightning
A faultless display of shooting from Ugandan goal-shooter Peace Proscovia fired Loughborough Lightning to a 57-48 victory over Team Northumbria, to give Lightning their second win in a row. Karen Atkinson made one change to the seven that started against Celtic Dragons, with Lauren Massey coming in for Rachel Forbes at GD.
Both teams started strongly, trading goal for goal in the first quarter, with Lightning taking a one point lead into the second quarter, 14-13. Both Peace Proscovia and Maryka Holtzhausen combined superbly to maintain their 100% shooting record in the second quarter as Lightning opened up a two point lead over Northumbria.
Sara Bowman brought the home side back on level terms however, with two goals in the final minute of Q2 to leave the scores at 26-26 at the halfway stage.
Quarter three saw Rachel Henry (C) swap positions with Hannah Joseph (WA) for Lightning, and this change appeared to give Lightning the edge over their opponents.
More accurate shooting from Proscovia, and some superb interceptions from Lauren Steadman and Joseph allowed Lightning to open up 38-27 lead, mid-way through the third quarter.
Northumbria again fought back, closing the gap to five goals during the latter stages, however great defensive work from South African goal defence Phumza Maweni kept the home side at bay, and Lightning took a 43-37 lead into the final quarter.
One final change for Lightning for the final quarter saw Rachel Forbes replace Lauren Massey at GD. Proscovia and Holtzhausen carried on their impressive shooting throughout the final fifteen minutes to maintain the Lightning advantage, and when the final buzzer sounded Loughborough had earned a fine 58-47 victory.
Loughborough Lightning head coach Karen Atkinson spoke to Sky Sports after the match: “It don’t think it was the prettiest game of netball, but it was really good to come out with a win.”
When asked about the performance of shooting pair Proscovia and Holtzhausen, Atkinson was full of praise: “It was a great balance between the two, and I’m just pleased with the volume and accuracy of both of them.”
Peace Proscovia was awarded her second player of the match award this season, after shooting 41/41 goals, said to Sky Sports: “I’m just so excited. I love netball and the fact that I was given the opportunity to play here in England was so exciting. I have to thank Loughborough for giving me this opportunity to expose my talent which was hidden away in Uganda. Karen (Atkinson) is a very good coach. What I’m doing and what the rest of the players are doing is all down to the impetus of Karen.”
The next match for Loughborough Lightning will be on Saturday 21st February, when they take on Surrey Storm in the Netball Centre.
Tickets have already sold out for this fixture, however, you can buy tickets to the remaining home matches via the Lightning website.