Lightning still in netball title race

Laura Scherian has starred in the Sunshine Coast Lightning's eight-point Super Netball home win against the West Coast Fever.

LAURA SCHERIAN of the Lightning passes during the Super Netball match between the Sunshine Coast Lightning and the Queensland Firebirds at Brisbane Arena in Brisbane, Australia.
LAURA SCHERIAN of the Lightning passes during the Super Netball match between the Sunshine Coast Lightning and the Queensland Firebirds at Brisbane Arena in Brisbane, Australia. Picture: Chris Hyde/Getty Images

The Sunshine Coast Lightning have vowed to continue flying at full throttle ahead of Super Netball's mid-season break.

Midcourter Laura Scherian was the star as the second-placed Lightning overpowered West Coast Fever 65-57 in Saturday afternoon's round-nine clash at Sunshine Coast's USC Stadium.

With the league heading into a month-long hiatus after this weekend to accommodate the World Cup in Liverpool, much could change when battle-weary internationals return to duty.

Injuries and fatigue might shift the balance of power, particularly for the Lightning who have five players heading to England.

Scherian said there was an intent from her teammates to keep the training intensity up in the run towards the finals.

"The five of us who are left behind will keep working, that's for sure," she said.

"We want to be ready for the girls to come back in because we're not sure what the rest of the season will look like."

Scherian missed out on national selection but, after her performance on Saturday, would not look out of place in a Diamonds line-up.

She had a game-high 43 feeds and had a hand in everything the Lightning did well.

Shooting pair Peace Proscovia (44 goals) and Steph Wood (21) were dominant and the home side had winners everywhere.

"She's so easy to find under the post," Scherian said of Proscovia.

The eight-goal loss all but ends sixth-placed West Coast's finals hopes.

Jhaniele Fowler's 45 goals were hard earned for the Fever and noticeably below her season average of 51.

Sunshine Coast led by four goals in the first half but greater involvement from Fever goaler Kaylia Stanton kept her side in touch.

Stanton confidently took a string of outside shots while circle partner Fowler was double-teamed.

The Lightning's patience was rewarded when they took charge in the third quarter.

New Zealand international Laura Langman flashed into prominence with three intercepts for the quarter.

Her exuberance spread throughout the Lightning camp, with defensive duo Phumza Maweni and Karla Pretorius poaching a combined three gains between them to help break open what had been a tight contest.


AAP