Beck O'Connell chats this week with Wodonga goal shooter Jessica Barton after the Bulldogs exciting first win of the season against the Wangaratta Rovers last weekend. Barton also touches on what it's been like moving from defence to attack this year.
BO'C: The Bulldogs notched up their first win of the season last round. Can you tell me a bit about the game and how the girls reacted to the win?
JB: We came out really strong in the first quarter. We were pretty shocked, especially with a lot of our younger players being able to experience a win. We had two girls in our team that hadn't won a game in the past three years. We lost it a little bit during the game but were able to pick it up and maintain it at the end, which was really good. At the end of the game everyone was really stoked. I started crying on behalf of the girls that hadn't won in so many years. It was just an awesome atmosphere having supporters from Bulldogs there as well.
BO'C: You play Myrtleford this weekend who are currently only sitting one game above. Heading into that game, what will be the team's main focus?
JB: Especially after last weekend, we've had a massive confidence boost. I think the girls are eager to get out there and have a go. We've had a massive training session and work load this week trying to refine and work through our intensity and pressure. We feel that we're out there to have a good crack, so hopefully we can take home another win. We're looking forward to it and are all really excited. We can't wait.
BO'C: As a team you've been finishing on average with around 40 goals, which could sometimes be considered a game winning score. Is Shae (Cunningham) and the team happy with how your season is progressing?
Also in sport:
JB: In comparison to other years, obviously we've had a slow development. We've been building up our connections with each other. I feel that this year it's all starting to fall into place and hopefully all of a sudden the penny will drop and we'll come out of nowhere. Hopefully we'll be able to execute it more consistently.
BO'C: What are your thoughts on the Ovens and Murray netball competition this year compared to previous seasons?
JB: It changes every year. I feel that the competition gets faster, quicker and stronger every year. There's constant improvement from all of the teams in the competition, it's crazy.
BO'C: In your own game, this season you've made the switch from defence to goals. Are you finding yourself at home under the ring?
JB: Yeah it was a bit of a head spin at the start. I would walk out onto the court and start defending the defender and then think hang on, the ball is coming to me, I have to get the ball. It's been that transition from being more proactive rather than reactive. It's all sort of falling into place and it's been and good experience and learning curve. It's been a good challenge.
The Wodonga Bulldogs will come up against the Myrtleford Saints at 2pm on Saturday at Martin Park in Wodonga.
- Receive our daily newsletter straight to your inbox each morning from The Border Mail. Sign up here