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Victory gives Bajans hope


Sherrylyn A. Toppin

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In a must-win situation after a shock defeat by hosts St Lucia, Barbados hammered Canada 60-31 last night, their final match in the 2010 Americas Federation of Netball Association Championships.With the victory at the Beausejour Indoor Facility, Barbados stayed on course to finish second and qualify for the 2011 World Netball Championships in Singapore. However, that was all contingent on the result of the nightcapper between Trinidad and Tobago and St Lucia which was still in progress. Barbados needed Trinidad to beat St Lucia and then finish with a better goal average than the hosts.“They had anxious moments earlier, but when they settled down, they played extremely well,” head coach Alwyn Babb said moments after the game.A lot of goals“They knew that they had to get a lot of goals and they won by 29.”Individual shooting statistics were not available.In yesterday’s opening game, the United States drubbed St Vincent and The Grenadines 63-49.When St Lucia defeated Barbados 53-50 on Monday night, it was the first time Barbados had lost to the St Lucians at the senior level. After a very strong start in which they were leading 10-4, everything went wrong.“We stayed at ten for almost six minutes and everything happened wrong. We started with great authority and then I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” said Babb. “We took that into the second quarter and that is where we lost the match. We were outscored 16-9.”He had warned his charges not to underestimate the home side, who had scrapped out some very close victories behind the strength of crowd support. In addition, St Lucia’s shooters were deadly accurate, at the time when both Latonya Blackman and Lisa Puckerin had off-games.Brilliant gameHowever, Babb was pleased with Tonisha Rock-Yaw who had a “brilliant game” at wing defence.Glatta Gabriel scored 32 from 33 and Shem Maxwell, who had to suffer the humiliating 39-13 defeat as coach of the Under-16 team here in Barbados, got sweet revenge at home, sinking 21 from 21.In contrast, Lydia Bishop missed six shots (29 from 35), while Nikita Piggott scored 18 from 19 and Nadia Blackman three from three. In other matches on Monday, St Vincent beat Canada 52-48 and Trinidad and Tobago beat the United States 49-34. Barbados starting line-up vs Canada: Lydia Bishop (GS), Nikita Piggott (GA), Sabrina Browne (WA), Sabreena Smith (C) Kizzy Marville (WD), Latonya Blackman (GD), Laurel Browne (GK). Subs: Samatha Browne (C), Sabrena Smith (WA).Starting Line-up vs St Lucia: Lydia Bishop (GS), Nikita Piggott (GA), Sabreena Smith (WA), Samantha Browne (C) Tonisha Rock-Yaw (WD), Latonya Blackman (GD), Lisa Puckerin (GK). Subs: Chekirah Shepherd.Summarised scores:  St Lucia 53 (Glatta Gabriel 32/33, Shem Maxwell 21/21). Barbados 50 (Lydia Bishop 29/35, Nikita Piggott 18/19, Nadia Blackman 3/3).

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