Marjon boss Donna Bristow plays down Regional Two relegation worries
MARJON boss Donna Bristow insists her netball team are not in any danger of relegation from Regional Two despite a heavy home defeat against title-chasing Hucclecote.
The city side were defeated 54-40 on their own court after starting brightly against a Gloucestershire team which has only lost one match so far this season and is only trailing Exeter on goal difference.
Bristow put the defeat down partly to having to beg, steal or borrow a training venue while Marjon's sports hall was being refurbished and not having played for several weeks.
"We're not in any danger of being relegated," said Bristow, whose team is fourth bottom, but 13 points clear of the bottom two. "That's something I'm not going to let happen. It would be dreadful if we had to qualify to get into regional netball again.
BRAND NEW FORD B-MAX ZETEC 1.0 ECOBOOST FOR ONLY £7685*View details
DRIVE AWAY A BRAND NEW FORD B-MAX ZETEC FOR ONLY £7685.
1.0 100PS Manual
Electric Windows & Mirrors
Quickclear Heated Windscreen
15" Alloy Wheels
Bluetooth with Ford Sync
*Drive away from only £7685 and then pay nothing for 24 months!
Contact: 01626 240583
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
"I'm a great believer in us not being dead until we are and we are far from that. I will be doing my utmost to make sure that the team will be staying up.
"We've had just one match in six weeks and we haven't had any training venue since December 4, although we're back at Marjon now, which will make a difference. Players can't just expect to turn up and play – they've got to train as well."
Plymouth Marjon Kites are in a more precarious position than the Regional Two team.
A 37-18 loss to University firsts left the Kites grounded in the Plymouth and District Netball League Premier A's bottom two, seven points adrift of safety, although with two games in hand.
That is nothing that could not be put right with a bit of practice, according to Bristow, who was complimentary about Kites' performance until they actually get underneath the opposition's net.
She said: "The Kites played very well in the first half, but they can't shoot, which has been the story of their season. I also believe all the divisions are stronger this year and that every time you play, it's anybody's game."
Regional One's PLYMOUTH PILGRIMS chairwoman Sue Gullick was upbeat after her side's 51-34 defeat at leaders Team Jets.
Pilgrims, whose up and coming starlet Becca Priest broke down before the match with an Achilles tendon problem, travelled with seven starters and one bench player.
Gullick said: "That meant another of our youngsters, Kayleigh Read, took to the court at wing defence, we moved Kylie Dann into wing attack to accommodate that move and attacker Carla Johnson into the defensive circle.
"Jets took an early lead as a result of the time it took our squad to settle and the girls struggled to get back on equal terms but, after half time, more changes were made that seemed to stabilise the ship a bit and the team only lost that quarter by one goal and drew the last. Kayleigh Read ended up playing in the defensive circle too.
"The squad worked well to stay in the match though and didn't give up. It was another valuable (losing bonus) point, they all count and could be invaluable come the season's end. Anyhow, we are hopeful that we can get a few more people back and fit for the remaining games."
In the PLYMOUTH AND DISTRICT LEAGUE Premier B, unbeaten Tamarside Coast shrugged off dangerous Sharpserv to dig in at the top of the division.
Coast's first quarter was sluggish but still they managed to take an 8-4 lead with deadly shooting from Sian Swinhoe. Carly Roberts and Rebecca Milbourne pinned Sharpserv into their own half and the second quarter saw the pair's passes hitting Coast shooter Rebecca Moore.
She was aided and abetted by goal attack Katie Sheldon as Coast defender Onuora Wright kept Sharps hot-shot Lauren Cox at bay.
Coast led the quarter 15-8 and introduced the imposing Jill Williams in the third to cut out Sharps' high passes to their shooters.
Wing defence Vicky Ware linked well with Roberts and Milbourne as Coast took a 23-13 lead.
Sharpserv, who have seen off promotion hopefuls Bar Mez, are capable of taking a game in the final quarter, but Lorna Rose, who moved to wing defence, allowed Ware further up the court as Coast limited their opponents' attacking options.
The final quarter saw the teams score five goals apiece as Coast kept up their drive for the Premier B title.