STANDING TALL: Yaralla Falcons' Abbi Cooper stepped up in defence for the Gladstone open's team on the weekend.
STANDING TALL: Yaralla Falcons' Abbi Cooper stepped up in defence for the Gladstone open's team on the weekend. Matt Taylor GLA010518NETB

Gladstone teams improved the longer round one went

NETBALL: Gladstone did not return home with the chocolates, but the experience from the first round of the Queensland Premier League competition was invaluable.

Gladstone's open and under-17 teams lost all their matches against Caloundra, Nambour and Sunshine Coast but under-17 coach Kacie Crawford was proud of her Gladstone team.

"I think that the growth of the girls has been remarkable over the two games that they played," she said.

"The teams that we played against have been together for a period of time while we have only been together for short time."

Caloundra won 44-17 in game one, but Gladstone pushed Nambour 45-34 in the second match.

"They certainly breed them tall down there," Crawford said in reference to the Sunshine Coast teams.

"Olivia Morgan at wing attack, captain Jessie Singh and Courtney Fitzsimmons were the stand-out players."

The Gladstone senior side pushed Caloundra and Sunny Coast to the brink of upset wins.

Veteran centre Melanie Dyball said there were learnings to be taken from the weekend as attention turned to round two in Rockhampton on June 8-9.

"The Nambour team was exceptional and all teams were great to play against," she said.

Dyball said there were several players who held their heads high throughout the two days.

"Olivia Whitla, Abbi Cooper and Keeley Dillon played well in our defence," Dyball said.

"They played really strong together and shut down a lot of the opposition team's attacking play."

Meanwhile Gladstone's Yasmin Ramsay played in the Frenchville Sports Club RNA Claws' opening three wins in a perfect start to the Netball Queensland's Premier League.

Claws beat Nambour 37-26, the Sunshine Coast 46-19 and Caloundra 52-31.

Coach Zoe Seibold was excited and said it was great for the girls to enjoy such a successful weekend after all the hard work in pre-season.

"I'm feeling pretty confident after those results," she said.

"We got the three wins - and quite comfortably too.

"The girls' commitment to each other on the court was phenomenal and the way they did look after the possession and really upped the ante in our defence strategies, saw quite a few turnovers go our way."

The Claws head to Rocky's CQUniversity on June 8-9.

with Pam McKay