Spurs remain perfect in Elite League
Manchester Spurs maintained their perfect record in Netball Jamaica's Berger Elite League, as they defeated Kingston Hummingbirds 54-50 at Leila Robinson Courts, National Stadium complex, on Tuesday night.
In a match-up between the league's top two teams, the Spurs' big shooters, Nicole Dixon and Anna-Kay Griffiths, again delivered, while combining for 53 of the points for Connie Francis' team to notch their sixth consecutive victory. Dixon scored 27 of 36 tries and Griffiths scored 26 of 34 attempts, with Giselle Allison scoring her only attempt to complete their tally.
Kingston Hummingbirds stayed competitive throughout, but could not find that extra gear to outwrestle resilient opponents, who had also beaten them in their first-round clash. Scoring for the Marvette Anderson-coached Corporate Area outfit were Sabrina Spence, who shot a game-high 38 goals from 44 attempts; Shanice Beckford, nine of 11 tries; and Hasan Williams, with three from four attempts.
The win advanced the Spurs to 18 points, six more than second-placed Hummingbirds, who have played seven matches.
They are followed by St Ann Orchids, the defending champions, and St Catherine Racers, on nine points apiece.
The Racers broke their six-point deadlock with St James Sharpes by again defeating the latter, 50-41, in Tuesday's second match-up, to create an advantage of securing a place in the four-team play-offs. St James Sharpes have played two fewer matches than the Racers.
Key shooter Tracy-Ann Francis played a big role in St Catherine Racers' triumph, scoring 41 goals from 44 tries. Her regular shooting partner, Shanice Howe, contributed eight goals from 10 tries, while Nardia Hanson registered a goal with her only attempt.
For St James Sharpes, Simone Forbes again led the scoring with 28 goals, from 35 tries, while Jodi-Ann French-Kentish netted 13 of 16 tries.
Competition continues this evening with a double-header at the preliminary round venue, Leila Robinson Courts.
In the opening game at 6:00 p.m., bottom-placed Clarendon Gaters desperately need a win to rekindle their very faint hopes of making the top four. They will face off against Kingston Hummingbirds.
The feature match, scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. start, features Manchester Spurs vs St Ann Orchids. This promises to be more competitive, with the Spurs favoured on the basis of their form, which ensured a 37-32 victory when the teams first met.