City West Falcons fight back to the winners’ circle

Jane Cook returned for the City West Falcons. Picture Shawn Smits.

City West Falcons came back from a couple of poor performances, with not one, but two wins in the Victorian Netball League Championship division.

After a shock loss the round before, the Falcons knew they needed to up the ante this week with two matches in three days.

First up, the Falcons faced bottom side Ariels. Coach Marg Lind said they were keen to redeem themselves.

The Falcons dominated from start to finish winning 72-35 despite missing their main goalscorer Kath Knott.

Lind said with the return of Jane Cook she had taken the opportunity to rest Knott, who is recovering from a calf strain.

Cook, returning from a season with the Adelaide Thunderbirds in the Super Netball Competition, shot 56 goals from 63 attempts against Ariels.

Defender Rudi Ellis also joined the Falcons for the first time this season and will add another element to the team. Lind said both players would allow them more flexibility.

“Jane has learnt a lot and has improved in her time in Adelaide,” Lind said.

“Rudi was a sign-on player with the Sydney Swifts. She played one game for us last year and decided she wanted to move to Victoria as she likes the pathway system.

“She wanted to come to a team where she could get good defensive coaching.”

Midcourter Molly Jovic was awarded the best on court votes.

The Falcons didn’t have long to rest, travelling to Geelong on Friday night where they faced Geelong Cougars.

It was a much tougher match-up, but the Falcons got the job done, winning 53-48 after leading at the second and third breaks.

Lind said getting the combinations right with such a tight turaround of games played a massive role in the win.

“It’s always hard … on the road,” she said.

“We subbed really well. Jane and Rudi played really well again. We brought Tahnysha Salanoa on for a burst later in the game and it worked really well.”

The win moves the Falcons to third on the ladder, two games behind ladder leaders and reigning premiers Melbourne University Lightning.

The Falcons face the Lightning this week and Lind said they will enter the game confident.

“They’ve [Melbourne University] only lost one game so it will be very tough,” she said.

“We have more options now with Jane and Rudi and that gives us more confidence.”