Netball: Newcastle surge home on last day to finish runner-up at 2018 NSW State Championships

HIGHLIGHT: Mikenzie McManus was one of Newcastle's best players at the 2018 Netball NSW State Championships in Gosford. Picture: Marina Neil
HIGHLIGHT: Mikenzie McManus was one of Newcastle's best players at the 2018 Netball NSW State Championships in Gosford. Picture: Marina Neil

Title holders Newcastle have finished the 2018 State Championships strongly with five straight victories on Monday to claim second spot in the Netball NSW open division at Gosford. 

Newcastle remained unbeaten on the third and final day of competition, jumping from sixth on Sunday night to runner-up with an overall win-loss record of 13-3. 

This pitted 2017 champions Newcastle equal on 26 points with both rivals Charlestown and hosts Gosford, who they defeated 20-12 in their third last game of the carnival, but a superior for-and-against mark put them ahead. 

Newcastle conceded a tournament-low 164 goals while scoring 366, only surpassed by eventual winners Manly Warringah (16-0) with 427 goals. 

“Defence was our strength all weekend,” Newcastle coach Babette Armstrong said. “It didn’t matter where they were on the court, they all worked hard.”

Armstrong said Mikenzie McManus, Katelyn Stansfield, Kimberly Goodearl and Georgia McVey received joint players’ player accolades on Sunday.

Newcastle were awarded the Pat Weston OAM Country Championship trophy for their efforts.

Meanwhile, Newcastle’s under-17 team finished fifth.