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Vitality Netball Superleague: Loughborough Lightning overcome injury problems to beat Surrey Storm | Netball News


Every Spring Showdown match will be shown live on Sky Sports and streamed on Sky Sports’ YouTube channel as the 11 Superleague teams take to court inside Birmingham’s Resorts World Arena.

Last update: 04/16/22 15:59

Ella Clark worked hard for Lightning on offense (Image credit: Ben Lumley)

Loughborough Lightning beat Surrey Storm 57-54 in the Vitality Netball Superleague Spring Showdown opener, despite Mary Cholhok and captain Nat Panagarry being unavailable.

International shot-stopper Cholhok and captain Panagarry were both declared unavailable just an hour before the first center pass and the duo’s loss prompted many to mark Storm as favourites.

Cholhok has scored 499 goals for Lightning this season, with only Storm’s Proscovia Peace accumulating more in the league while Panagarry provides leadership and determination in midfield.

However, Victoria Burgess’ side used the 60 minutes of netball against Storm to illustrate their depth, both by experienced individuals and younger players.

Ella Clark stepped into the goalkeeper role superbly and at the other end of the field Alice Harvey worked tirelessly to score peace and link up with Fran Williams.

The result means Lightning have lost just one game this season and will face the Celtic Dragons on Sunday.

Storm also has a quick turnaround ahead of his second Vitality Netball Superleague Spring Showdown match, when he takes on league leaders Manchester Thunder.

Vitality Netball Superleague – Spring Showdown

Saturday Sunday
1 p.m. Lightning 57-54 Storm 12 p.m. Bath against rhinos Sky Sports Action and Mix
2:45 p.m. Rhinos vs. Dragons Sky Sports Arena and Mix 1:45 p.m. Dragons Against Lightning Sky Sports Action and Mix
4:30 p.m. Thunder against Sirens Sky Sports Arena 3:30 p.m. storm against thunder Sky Sports Action and Mix
6:15 p.m. Wasps against pulse Sky Sports Arena 5:15 p.m. Pulse vs. Mavericks Sky Sports Action and Mix
8 p.m. Mav vs. Stars Air sports mix 7 p.m. The stars against the wasps Sky Sports Action and Mix

After losing the first quarter by four goals, Lightning used their defensive prowess to deliver a stunning change of momentum during the second and win it by 10 goals.

Harvey, Fran Williams and Beth Cobden worked exceptionally hard to disrupt the flows to Peace, with goalkeeper Harvey named player of the game.

Harvey finished his afternoon on the job with four deflections, two turnovers and two interceptions. Williams, ahead of England head coach Jess Thirlby, added four more turnovers and three interceptions.

Loughborough Lightning vs Surrey Storm – Quarter by quarter scores

Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 FT
Loughborough Lightning 12 18 9 18 57
Surrey Storm 16 8 18 12 54

Due to Lightning’s productive second quarter, Surrey Storm trailed 30-24 at halftime. However, Mikki Austin’s side used the interval well and the head coach made some personnel changes.

Austin sat on the bench, introduced the experienced Sophia Candappa on the wing attack and moved Yasmin Parsons to center.

Candappa continually looked to peace and on defense, Leah Middleton and Grace Sullivan disrupted Lighting’s work. The result was another one-sided quarter, this time in favor of Storm.

The final 15-minute set went goal-for-goal for a significant period of time, before Lightning took a 51-49 lead with six minutes remaining.

The arrival of Emma Thacker in base attack had created a new dynamic for Lightning and that forced Storm to make some defensive changes.

After a key contact call in Storm’s offensive side, Lightning stepped on the accelerator one last time in order to see the contest over.

The Vitality Netball Superleague Spring Showdown continues with four more games on Saturday and five on Sunday. Every game is live on Sky Sports and streamed live on Sky Sports’ YouTube channel.




Sky Sports

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