FOR the third time in six rounds Wodonga has been forced to share the points.
But it wasn’t the only one — Myrtleford gave up a five-goal lead at three quarter-time to draw with Albury at the McNamara Reserve on Saturday.
The Bulldogs also led into the final quarter before a desperate Corowa-Rutherglen, spearheaded by Beck O’Connell and shooter Sophie Hanrahan, clawed its way back to a 47-47 draw at the John Foord Oval.
Wodonga coach Kylie Murphy said she couldn’t remember a similar start to a season.
“I’ve been playing netball for 20 years and have never seen anything like it,” she said.
“One draw is unusual, three in six rounds is something else.
“We again got out to a five or six-goal lead and made errors under pressure in the final quarter — in some ways it might be a mental thing now so we’ll sit down and try to work it out.
“This year the competition is so tight you can’t afford to be off your game in any quarter.”
Wodonga missed star shooter Jane Cook but Murphy wasn’t making excuses.
“They were more desperate than us in the final quarter,” she said.
“Credit to Bec O’Connell too, she has done an amazing job with a young side and their shooter Sophie Hanrahan is some player.
“For us Rebecca Cameron was good as always and Gemma Grimmond did a great job on Hanrahan when she came on.”
Myrtleford coach Ruth Quirk said the Alpine Saints would take the positives from their draw.
“It was bittersweet, we shared the points after leading but at the same time it was probably our best four-quarter effort, probably the first time we have played the netball we are capable of,” she said.
“It was a great team effort with the girls being more accountable in defence and receiving the ball in a free-flowing game.
“Marnie Doodewaard got the votes but it really was a team performance and Saige Broz again showed her quality.”
Quirk said the race for the finals would come down to the death, with five teams now locked on 14 points in second spot and Myrtleford just four points behind.
“This year it really is a matter of who puts four quarters together,” she said.
“But for us, Saturday showed what we are capable of and we think we still haven’t really hit our straps yet.”