A tough double-header weekend proved too rich a mix for Upper Hutt Maidstone United in Wellington Regional Super League netball.
The side, playing in the league's top flight Division One for the first time, were undone by the strong Wellington East and PIC 1 combinations on Saturday and Sunday respectively, going down by a 27-goal margin in both games at Porirua's Te Rauparaha Stadium.
"Really we were evenly matched but we didn't treasure our own ball," UH Maidstone coach Debbie Huntersays.
There was a recognisable step up in the pressure and pace of the games at this level, she says.
"It was much faster but we know where our downfall was."
The side's goal shooting was mostly consistent but there were times when the constant pressure from the opposition bought some inaccuracy there and across the court.
The Hutt Valley's top premier side Naenae White also lost their two games, to both the PIC teams, as the Wellington-based clubs made all the early competition running in the six-team division.
UH Maidstone defender Louise Wharakura was a standout for the maroon and whites in her side's 32-59 loss to Wellington East, Hunter says.
Backing up the next day Kathleen Beckett, who spent time in both the goal shoot and goal attack roles, was the best of the locals in the 46-73 defeat against PIC.
UH Maidstone, like all teams, have just the one game this weekend.
It's against the young PIC 2 outfit who headed Naenae White by eight goals on Sunday and who will represent another tough examination of the UH Maidstone game.
The match is at Te Rauparaha, Saturday, 12.15pm.
- Upper Hutt Leader