Netballers Seal Dramatic Double Varsity Win

Two thrilling victories ensure glory for the Cambridge netballers in front of a raucous crowd. Star photographer Will Seymour was on hand to watch the girls record their double.

blues netball charlotte penney jays netball jess mcgeorge Netball vicky colgate

The Netball Varsity match was a comprehensively Light Blue affair as both the Blues and Jays completed dramatic victories over Oxford.

The Blues avenged last year’s defeat by beating the Dark Blues 40-34, while the Jays ran out 36-34 victors.

The Varsity game began nervously, with both sides guilty of dropping centre passes. Oxford’s goal shooter was clinical with her opportunities though, and the Dark Blues led 5-3 with five minutes gone.

The play soon settled down, and some important interceptions from Cambridge wing defence Sophia Anderson saw the Light Blues level after ten. By the end of the first quarter, the score was poised at 8-9, and it was anyone’s game.

In the second quarter, Cambridge took the initiative, and some sleek passing moves saw them 18-14 up at the second break thanks to some fast counter-attacks orchestrated by captain Vicky Colgate and wing attack Charlotte Penney.

The home side held their four point lead through the third quarter, but Oxford soon fought their way back.

As the clock ticked down towards the last break, Oxford’s impressive goal shooter brought her team into the game again, leveling the score at 27-all with one quarter left.

As the players geared up for the final fifteen minutes, Oxford’s star goal defence was seen leaving the sports hall, apparently to catch a train to a regional match.

Quite how significant her departure was is a matter of conjecture, but there was nothing uncertain about Cambridge’s next move.

In the final quarter the Blues stepped up and took the game away from Oxford.

Goal shooter and Tab pin-up Jess McGeorge (right) found her rhythm and had the ball through the net at almost every opportunity.

Brilliant defence from goal keeper Antonia Akoto saw the Blues put five unopposed points on the board, opening a 35-30 gap which the away side could not recover.

The raucous home crowd cheered as Cambridge pulled out their advantage, with the score 40-34 at the final whistle.

Blues captain Vicky Colgate told The Tab she was ecstatic: “The girls’ performance yesterday was the culmination of an amazing season. It was an honour to walk out on court as their captain and they made me extremely proud”.

The team’s victory cemented a jubilant day for Cambridge netball after the Jays’ earlier win over Oxford’s second string.

The Jays beat their Dark Blue opponents 36-34, with Hannah Pennicott winning player of the match, and captain Sarah Gill lavished praise on her team: “We won because of an all round team effort and our fitness especially helped in the last quarter as we were able to maintain the intensity.

“I’m unbelievably proud of the team and now looking forward to coming top of our BUCS league.”