Barbados drew first blood in the first match of their netball series against St Lucia when they defeated the visitors 77-50 at the Netball Stadium last night.
Barbados never trailed over the six quarters as Nikita Piggott and Laurel Browne put on a shooting clinic, combining for 43 goals from 48 attempts. They were adequately supported by Shonica Wharton who netted 17 goals from 21 attempts, Shannon Hackett who sank 12 goals from 16 attempts and the youthful and highly promising goal-attack Sheniqua Thomas who had five goals from her eight attempts.
Barbados led 12-9 after the first quarter, 28-15 after the second, 40-22, 54-30, and 62-41 after five periods of play.
St Lucia’s main offensive weapons were goal-shoot Shem Maxwell and Indira Laurencia. While Maxwell was the highest goal-scorer on both teams, she missed a high number of her attempts and will be looking to do better than her 24 goals from 39 attempts as the series continues. Laurencia was the better percentage shooter of the two, sinking 20 goals from 23 attempts. St Lucia’s other scorers were Ianna Hippolyte (4/7) and Jermaine Genelon (2/4).
In addition to having to deal with a better percentage shooting performance by their hosts, St Lucia had also to contend with a strong defensive display by Barbados who intercepted a number of their passes and frequently harried them into errant passes.
However, St Lucia’s main problems came at goal where better shooting might have resulted in a closer scoreline as they also placed plenty defensive pressure on the Bajan girls.