by Vanessa Knight – EM TV Sport, Port Moresby
In Day 2 of netball, the PNG Pepes once again wowed the courts in at the PNG Power Dome with another impressive performance, flaying Tonga 81 – 27.
The PNG Netball team gave their opponents quite a challenge by starting off with a comfortable score of 29 – 11 in the first quarter, which led to a runaway margin as each quarter progressed.
Once again an impressive performance on court with the combination of PNG netball veteran Lua Rikis at goal attack, and Tiata Baldwin assisting at goal shooter, brought the team to a safe margin.
The scores for each quarter progressed with PNG leading from 29 – 11 in the first quarter, 40 -14 in the second quarter, 64 – 19 in the third quarter and in the final quarter, the combination of Herronie Daera and Jephat Tulapi who went in to sub Rikis following a slight injury, took the ladies safely home with an 81 – 27 victory.
Tongan goal shooter Luseame Kalaneti Vea who advantaged her opponents with her height displayed tremendous effort in scoring with the assistance of midcourt stronghold Laumaile, however experience won over as PNG veteran goal defender Kilala Owens and goal keeper Margaret Eka worked overtime to keep the balls away from the ring.
Team Tonga put up a great effort with strong shooting, however as the game progressed the midcourt unravelled under pressure, making frivolous mistakes and predictable passes which gave them away.
The PNG side were quick to pick up on their opponents’ blunders, and with a combination of great intercepting at midcourt, were able to keep the balls sinking at their end.
Tomorrow will prove to be a challenging match for the PNG lasses who are up against fellow world-rankers Samoa.