Queanbeyan first division threats for title in early upset outings

THE Queanbeyan Netball Division One side came away with a huge upset last Friday night, downing competition favourites Arawang 42-35 at the Lyneham Netball and Hockey Centre in round one action.

And they also impressed in round two on Sunday in going down by just 45-41 against last year's runners up Canberra.

The round one victory has got coach Rena Spears excited about her side's prospects this season after losing in the semi finals last year in their return to first division.

She said her players were able to startle the defending champions whilst still "taking their foot off the accelerator" in the dying stages.

"Arawang changed a number of players throughout the game to try and match our speed and determination across the court," she said.

"I ran the same seven players across the whole game and I thought they did a fantastic job."

Despite the upset win, Spears said she had never looked to expose any vulnerabilites of Arawang.

"My focus is all on us, and what we need to work on and where we need to improve... I think everything else will come on game day if we do all our basics well," she said.

Sixteen-year old goal attack Brittany Reynolds impressed Spears in her first Divisione One match, while the combination of skipper Leanne McGrath and Jenna Spears worked a treat centre court.

It was McGrath's first game as captain, and Spears said she will be a great leader this season.

"She ran the whole game at centre which is a huge ask...I don't come across many teams out there that run the one player in the centres for the whole game," she said.

"But that's one of our strong points- we are fit."

Spears said some players were away for Sunday's loss to Canberra, and was impressed that her same seven players were able to match Canberra's rotating 12 players.

"We lost that game in the last couple of minutes just through exaustion...it could have gone either way," she said.

They play the winless South Canberra in round three action tonight at 6pm.

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