23rd Mar, 2019

Dragons stung by unbeaten Wasps in Cardiff

Ben Tyler 20th Feb, 2019

WASPS Netball remained the only unbeaten side with a 100% winning record when they triumphed 58-46 winners over Celtic Dragons in a closely fought affair.

The narrow win in Cardiff ensured Mel Mansfield’s side made it five straight victories to their 2019 title defence, although they were well matched during the first-quarter.

The Wasps head coach claimed that it was a feel good win all-round, and see’s no end to her side’s successful start any time soon.

“This was a big three points tonight and to not lose a single quarter was really pleasing.

“It was a physical game but the second-half is always strong for us and we were able to make some changes to give our players a rest ahead of Friday’s trip to Bath.

“We managed to get all of our squad out on the court tonight and it was fantastic to see Chloe Essam out there and get the chance to show the talent she has.

“There is a great vibe in this team at the moment. The strength of this team is the depth of our squad, so I think we’re using that strength brilliantly.”

Six goals scored without a turnover was how both sides started, but the Dragons’ Nia Jones capitalised on the first mistake made by a Wasps player to give her side a three-goal lead.

Katie Harris brought Wasps level at the end of the period, whilst Bongi Msomi became an imposing presence in the second-quarter and made some vital passes into goal attack.

Wasps began to step up a gear and forced a couple of turnovers, overturning the scores to lead by four-goals, although Celtic maintained the pressure.

Leading by seven-goals at the break, Mansfield switched her side around and threw Josie Huckle into the contest, who immediately became a thorn in the side of the Dragons’ shooters.

Sophia Candappa meanwhile was in fine form once again in attack, aided by the ever-consistent shooting of Rachel Dunn to bring Wasps’ lead into double-figures.

Chloe Essam netted two quick-fire strikes after emerging from the bench to to extend the lead, while the re-introduction of Msomi and Williams in the final-quarter further aided Wasps’ cause.

In the end, Wasps rallied to secure a 12-goal win, and hope to extend their perfect start when visiting Team Bath this Friday (7pm) at Bath University.

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