Match Preview (R2) Mystics v Stars
These two teams will have a little something extra on the line when they meet for the first time this season. A newly introduced ‘Northern Challenge’ trophy – sponsored by Barfoot & Thompson – is up for grabs and will be awarded after the third game between the SKYCITY Mystics and Northern Stars. Both teams are coming off the back of losses to the Silvermoon Tactix. The Mystics have lost their opening two encounters but captain Anna Harrison was pleased with their lift in intensity in the three-goal defeat to the Tactix, ruing a few “crucial errors” which cost them dearly. “It was a step up in intensity, not quite enough, but it’s something to work with so we’ll take that.” The Stars are coming off the disappointment of an extra-time loss to the Tactix but have had time to ponder how they coughed up a five-goal advantage in the fourth quarter. Connections up front continue to gel with former Silver Fern Paula Griffin having done enough to warrant a starting bib at goal attack.
WHO TO WATCH:
Anna Harrison (Mystics) – the Mystics captain was outstanding against the Silvermoon Tactix last week doing everything in her power to push her team over the line. She nabbed six intercepts, nine deflections and three rebounds in a stand out display.
Michaela Sokolich-Beatson (Mystics) versus Grace Kara (Stars) – an all Silver Fern match-up will be one to watch with Kara a vital cog in the Stars new-look forward line. Sokolich-Beatson is known for her speed and ability to come through for the ball on defence.
Paula Griffin (Stars) – the former Silver Fern came on strongly for the Stars last week and she had an immediate connection with wing Grace Kara. Her experience alongside youngster Maia Wilson and confidence with her shot at goal sparked the Stars when she came off the bench.