Saints book their place in big dance

August 08, 2017

Shepparton and Benalla gathered for a group photo following their Northern Country Women's League preliminary final on Sunday. Picture: Meredith Tolliday

Shepparton has missed out on qualifying for the inaugural Northern Country Women’s League grand final.

The Bears lost their preliminary final with Benalla on Sunday by two points in a low-scoring scrap.

The Saints kicked the opening goal of the game in wet and muddy conditions at Benalla Showgrounds and would never relinquish their lead.

Shepparton had its chances, but the home side prevailed 2.1 (13) to 1.5 (11).

Kelsie Piscioneri proved to be the match-winner for Benalla, kicking both of its goals to go to 18 for the season, while Wendy Ludeman slotted the Bears’ only major.

Kylie Relf, Hayley Martiniello, Gorgia Spinks, Piscioneri, Mickayla Walker and Fiona Powles were the Saints’ best, while Emily McClure, Mel Weston, Allison Trethowan, Madelyn McNeill, Breanna Davison and Rebecca Bowles led the way for Shepparton.

Benalla will head to Bendigo’s Weerona Oval on Sunday looking to cause a massive upset against the Thunder in the decider.

Bendigo has been a juggernaut during the season and thumped the Saints by 83 points in the second semi-final last week.

The NCWL vote count and presentation night was held at the Kyabram Club last night, with winners to appear in tomorrow’s News.

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