Shepparton is the best in the business leading into the interleague bye, but Kyabram was by no means disappointed in its efforts against the Bears.
Co-coach Holly Butler said her side rose to the challenge despite the 20-goal losing margin.
‘‘I think it was our best game all year, we were really happy overall with everything,’’ she said.
‘‘Our first quarter we came out and were only four down, so we took a lot away from it, we’ve been working on our systems and the Bears are such a good side, so we’re happy we made it harder for them to get the win.’’
While the opening term was close, Shepparton tore away in the second term by registering 13 goals to two.
Steph Gorrie was pivotal in goal with Jacinta Todd’s feeding always hard to counteract.
But Lara Cunningham learnt some valuable lessons playing on the Wellman medallist with Butler pleased with how the rising star is stepping up to the challenge of A-grade netball from the under-17s.
Despite the deluge of ball going into Shepparton’s attack, the defence never dropped its head.
‘‘Lauren Pryde was best on in goal keeper and she played with Rachel McCormack-Vick who played her first A-grade game,’’ Butler said.
‘‘They worked really well together and it was Lauren Pryde’s best game for the year, she got a lot of hands on the ball and a lot of intercepts.’’
Shani Clark’s experience also stood out as Butler said the side’s next aim was to improve its accuracy in goals.
‘‘We had some fast ball movement and the Shepp Bears had a really good defensive press which we worked through really well by just driving hard, so we’ll just work on how we finish off the ball,’’ she said.
The Bombers upped their scoring rate in the second half, but a strong final quarter from Shepparton blew the margin out to a solid 20 goals.
With Butler, Clark and Pryde taking on the joint coaching role this season, Butler said she was enjoying seeing the development of players stepping into the side after key premiership players moved on.
‘‘It’s a challenge, but it’s been good because we’ve got some young girls to work with and mentor them and develop their netball, so to bring some young ones up into A-grade and work with Lauren and Shani has been good fun,’’ she said.