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Gems put Dominica in the shade


Gems put Dominica in the shade

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It took a while for the sun to shine through at the wet Vigie Multi-Purpose Sports complex, but the Bajan Gems brought their own heat to outdazzle Dominica 29-13 in an early morning match of the Jean Pierre tournament yesterday.

Cautious that the young Gems had to return later in the night to battle St Vincent and the Grenadines, coach Julie Phillips opted to give court time to some of the reserves. Kellisa Kelly started as goal shooter with Chiara Chase playing goal attack.

Damia Walrond played wing attack, captain Janine Forde held wing defence, Kimani Archer ran centre while the defence circle was controlled by the unrelated Cherese Small and the tough Acacia Small. The Gems led 7-3, 13-4 and 22-9 before snatching their second win in three matches.

The Gems had to deal with an anomaly on B court of one of the netball rings being almost 12 inches higher than the other with Kelly struggling to find a shooting range. Thankfully, Chase put down another solid performance, scoring 13 goals from 17 shots. Kelly made six from 15 before she was replaced by usual starter Jada Smith who shot ten of 16.

In spite of some sloppy ball handling, the Gems always controlled the game as Dominica’s shooters lacked the accuracy to seriously threaten. The play of Acacia who is only Small in name was inspiring as she repeatedly shut down much bigger players and her court craft was superior.

Dominica were led by Jemuna Francois, who scored 12 goals from 22 shots while replacement goal attack Jarnilia Phillip made one of five after Acacia had denied Etherline Telemaque any goals or shots for her country.

Walrond was a bit suspect at wing attack and she later moved to a more comfortable wing defence as Archer took the wing attack spot, allowing Shonica Griffith to take the centre bib. Meanwhile, the number one team Jamaica were enjoying another blowout on Court A, crushing Grenada 41-14.

The Gems will have an off-day today while the day will begin with the traditional breakfast with the Stars this morning at seven at the Pastoral Centre in Marisule. (KB)