ZEO Netball Superleague: Team Bath make winning start to title defence
Last Updated: 02/02/14 3:50pm
Team Bath: most successful team in Netball Superleague history with five titles
Team Bath opened their defence of the ZEO Netball Superleague with a 59-45 victory over Team Northumbria.
After a slow start, Team Bath - whose line-up featured England internationals Serena Guthrie, Pamela Cookey, Mia Ritchie and Stacey Francis - found form and led 15-8 at the end of the first quarter.
And they continued to dominate in the second quarter, extending their advantage to 30-16 at half-time on home court at University of Bath Sports Training Village.
Team Bath coach Jess Thirlby made changes after the break, including a debut for 16-year-old goalkeeper Summer Artman.
Northumbria edged the third quarter scoring 16-12 but Team Bath's starters returned in the final quarter to seal the result.
"We talked in the break at half-time about keeping the momentum and it was a bit disappointing that we dropped off a bit in that third quarter," Thirlby said on Team Bath's website.
"But I felt it was right to make the changes putting Summer on to make her debut and feel what it is like at this level and I thought Scarlett Williams came on well at wing defence.
"Respect to Northumbria. They played well and we knew that they would be a slicker outfit than previous sides from that franchise."