The early part of the first quarter went goal for goal until Oldham put their foot down. Laura Malcolm turned the ball over at 2-2 and Oldham raced on from there into a quick 6-2 lead, with some slick passages of play through the court into shooters Kathryn Turner and Alice Travis. Turner was running the show in the circle whilst Sara Hale and Georgie Webster were making life difficult for the Bath shooters. At quarter time Oldham were in a commanding position, leading 18-5.
Coach Debbie Hallas opted to switch the centre court around with Malcom moving into the centre, Rachel Henry in to WA and Maria McAndrew back in to WD. The changes did little to halt Oldham as they flew out of the blocks to further stretch the lead. McAndrew, Malcolm and Webster were restricting the options for Bath and creating numerous turnovers for Travis and Turner to convert. The second quarter was more fruitful for Bath but Oldham were still dominating to lead 36-14 at half time.
The third quarter saw a complete change in fortunes, and Bath started to come back into the game, taking the first 6 goals of the quarter before Oldham could reply. Oldham were still turning the ball over but too much was being wasted through the court. Eventually Oldham started to play but it was too late to stop Bath cutting Oldham’s lead by 2. 48-28 at 3 quarter time.
After channelling her inner Sir Alex, coach Hallas sent Oldham back on court with renewed energy. The home side quickly pulled away, with some fantastic play from Malcolm and Henry. Bath were struggling to keep up and Hale and Webster were picking up some great intercepts in defence, with Webster taking 3 in quick succession to kill Bath off.
After the game Hallas said ‘It was good to have Laura Malcolm back in the squad, gaining some valuable match play at centre. She combined well with Rachel Henry in attack, who fed our shooters well. It was an all-round good performance, and the girls had too much in their locker for Bath, even though we lacked concentration in the third quarter.’