The home side started slowly with Oaksway taking the first goal but it was the only time that the North East based side would lead in the match. Oldham took control of the match and never looked back, despite the line-up changing with every quarter. Every squad member played at least half a game with Coach Debbie Hallas using the game to give some youngsters good court time and rotate and rest some of the more experienced players.
Oldham used their superior speed to great effect with Iona Darroch again proving effective in the mid court with her combination with Laura Malcolm driving the ball to the shooters with ease, which Kathryn Turner and Krista Enziano duly slotted away. Abby Tyrrell and Emma Dovey were working hard at the back to restrict the Oaksway shooters and Taylor Cullen was proving effective against the smart play of the Oaksway WA. Oldham led 17-7
More changes were rung for the third. Amy Clinton, Turner, Darroch and Jodie Gibson replacing Enziano, Stevenson, Malcolm and Dovey respectively. Oldham were comfortable in their lead now and this showed with a few uncharacteristic errors, but the experience on court showed and the home side managed to pull it back and increase the lead even further. Gibson was working well with Tyrrell in the defensive circle taking every rebound that came their way, to give Turner and Clinton the opportunity to extend the lead. Oldham led 42-24 heading in to the final period.
Stevenson and Dovey returned for the last 15 replacing Turner and Cullen, and again Oldham pulled away from their opposition with some clinical play, mixed with a few errors, but Oaksway never really challenged the home side and the reigning champions ran out 54-35 winners, taking all 4 quarters comfortably.
Coach Hallas said: “We could have taken the game out with a higher margin but I wanted to give opportunities to some of the youngsters while also resting some of our more experienced players. Lucy Stevenson looked good in her two quarters at goal attack, she’s only played one quarter in Premier League before and looked comfortable. Player of the match was Abby Tyrrell who was solid at the back particularly on rebounds.”
Starting seven: GS K Enziano GA K Turner WA I Darroch C L Malcolm WD T Cullen GD E Dovey GK A Tyrrell. Bench: A Clinton L Stevenson A Neild J Gibson