Charlestown's opens squad had to battle through the best of the tournament on the final day, and scored a seventh place finish off the back of their state battles. Image via CNA.

Charlestown’s opens team has finished seventh at the Netball NSW 2019 State Titles, after a tricky final day saw them scored twelve wins overall at the tournament.

The opens squad got off to a flying start in Campbelltown, chalking up five wins and falling to defeat just a single time across their first half-dozen fixtures. Randwick was the only team that managed to bowl them over, 29-15. Overall, Charlestown’s attack led the way in the opening games, as they piled on 126 goals.

 A similar record awaited Charlestown on the second day, as they grabbed four wins and a bye round in their seven slotted fixtures. After the first two days, Charlestown’s opens were sitting sixth, but a difficult final day awaited them.

Battling their way through most of the top four teams, including Hills and St George, Charlestown scored just three wins on Monday. They bundled over Bankstown, Queanbeyan, and Illawarra in three straight wins, before they faced arch-rivals Newcastle in the second last game of the day. They fell 25-16 to the eventual champions.

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Despite finishing four places lower than they had in 2018, it was a strong finish for Charlestown, Charlestown head coach Leonie Barrett said.

“I’m happy with the way it, considering the teams above us were all the teams that beat us that’s not too bad,” Barrett said to the Chronicle. “The competition had a lot of unknowns this year, because a lot of the top six teams weren’t there last year, so we did well to adapt to that change and finish where we did.”

Charlestown’s representative squad had a number of changed between their third-place finish last year, and this, and Barrett said she was “very proud” of the new-look squad after they managed to collect three wins in their difficult last day.

Charlestown faced arch-rivals Newcastle in a “tough” last two fixtures on Monday afternoon.

“We knew that, at the very least, Hills and Newcastle in the final two games of the third day was going to be very difficult, it’s a hard end to any tournament considering how well both those teams had been doing in Campbelltown,” Barrett said.

“With all the newcomers in the team, first-time rep players, some young stars, and some returning, and overall everyone was excellent throughout the weekend. Everyone did what they were asked, and I could not be more proud of them all. They were fantastic.”

Charlestown’s under-15s also had a dominant run at the titles, finishing in the top four of their age bracket’s second division.

After opening with four straight wins in a row, Temora and Lakeside nipped their undefeated streak in the bud on the opening day. They bounced back, however, to notch five wins and a draw on the second day.

The third day kept them fourth, after three wins, two narrow draws, and a single loss rounded out their Campbelltown campaign. In the end, Charlestown finished just five points off the leaders in Ballina, and two points off second.

Finally, Charlestown’s 17s finished thirteenth in their second division, after eight wins and a draw in their 19 fixtures settled them right into the middle of the table.


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