Hawks are on the rise

By Cobram Courier

After being brave in defeat against the best teams in the MNL, Barooga now has some momentum to build off after making it two wins in succession, defeating Shepparton East 44-30 to climb into the top eight.

Co-coach Sharni Hazelman said it was difficult to pick out the Hawks’ best players, considering it was an even spread across the board, but reserved special praise for wing defence Viv Mallows, who was switched to goal defence against Shepparton East.

‘‘She’s playing really well at the moment and has been very consistent throughout the year so she is doing really well,’’ Hazelman said.

One common trend Barooga is finding hard to shake is its slow starts to matches, and players were again caught napping to trail the Eagles by six goals at the first change.

After the first quarter though it was all one way sailing as Barooga outscored the Eagles by 6-7 goals in each term to run out convincing winners.

After missing players through injury and unavailability, Hazelman believes her group is finally starting to get some continuity in the way they want to play their netball.

“Personally, I think we are starting gel as a team and starting to settle in positions. I guess it was always going to take a little bit of time for that to happen because of a few injuries and the fact only a few of us actually played together last year. Besides two or three of us, virtually everyone else is new,” she said.

Hazelman said she is relishing the step up into the coach role, especially considering she gets to do it alongside her sister Taylah.

“It definitely makes it easier that we have each other to take the load off and we have a great group of girls to coach.

“The fact we have a couple of wins on the board now makes it more enjoyable as well,” she said.

After the bye this weekend, Barooga will face a stern examination in the form of Moama who occupy fourth place on the ladder.