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Friday, June 01, 2012
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Netballers fight for Semis

CHIJ Secondary Toa Payoh, in white, along with Singapore Sports School came out first in their respective groups. (Photo: SSC)
 
While netball played by 15 to 16 years olds might not get the same attention as national level netball, the B Division Girl’s quarter-finals had all the intensity of a high level tournament.
 
This intensity, on 12 April, had been distilled into eight teams, all of whom had fought their way from the original 16 to emerge as the best of the best in their groups.
 
The teams that came out on top that day were the Singapore Sports School (SSP) in group X and CHIJ Secondary Toa Payoh (HIJ) in group Y, making it to the semi-finals along with Greenview Secondary and Raffles Girls Secondary (RGS).
 
SSP’s first match was against Cedar Girls (CG) who put up a brave fight, bouncing back from just about every goal their opponents made with a goal attempt of their own. However, their attempts were not able to stave off the ambitions of the SSP girls, who eventually left them five points behind to finish 22-17.
 
Greenview was similarly trounced by SSP with a 34-27 score line. Only Nanyang Girls’ High was able to offer any resistance, although not by much. They prevailed against SSP with 28-32.
 
No big upset for SSP, who finished the day first in their group with six points over all, having scored 84 goals.
 
“I’m very proud of my team for playing so hard and pushing back from the third quarter,” said Tabitha Ong, captain for SSP. “I also want to give credit to Cedar Girls’ for playing their hearts out and playing so well.”
 
HIJ had an even better time, winning two of their first matches and drawing in their last to net themselves seven points. Their first match, against RGS, was significant as they had lost the last two times that the teams had faced each other.
 
It seemed as though the pattern would persist as HIJ was struggling to get the upper hand even until the half way point. “But we pushed ourselves because we really wanted to win this time,” said Gillian Chia, Wing Attack for HIJ. “This time, we were more comfortable playing together and we gelled better.”
 
That proved to make the crucial difference and HIJ finished and impressive nine points ahead with 40-31, putting their team into the four moving on to the semis

The four remaining teams will square off on 15 April,  at the CHIJ Secondary Indoor Sports Hall, hoping to make it to the finals on 19 April.