Swifts smash Giants in Super Netball derby


Helen Housby starred as the Swifts buried local rivals the Giants by 24 points.
Helen Housby starred as the Swifts buried local rivals the Giants by 24 points.

NSW Swifts inflicted the Giants’ heaviest Super Netball defeat of the season and ended a two-match losing skid with a 76-52 thrashing of their local rivals in a feisty derby.

The Giants led briefly in the second quarter at Ken Rosewall Arena, but were overpowered in the second half, slipping to a fifth defeat in six games.

The Swifts (3-2) moved above the Lightning back into fourth and within four points of the third-placed Thunderbirds, who they play in Adelaide next week.

It was the Swifts’ biggest winning margin of 2024 and a fourth loss by 19 or more goals this season for the  bottom of the ladder Giants (1-5).

Paige Hadley.
Paige Hadley had 26 goal assists in a dominant display from the Swifts. (Jono Searle/AAP PHOTOS)

A typically physical derby included a two-minute first-half suspension for Giants and Diamonds midcourter Jamie-Lee Price, who was deemed to have made dangerous contact with the Swifts’ Allie Smith.

“It was an interesting call; you are going  for the ball and they land on top of you,” Price told Fox.

Former Diamond shooter Cath Cox backed the umpire’s decision.

“It was dangerous. She looked like she was burrowing underneath that player. Allie Smith had a pretty big fall to the ground – you could hear it.” Cox told Fox.

Giants captain Jo Harden (22/24) was issued with an umpire’s warning in the third quarter for what appeared to be dissent.

Swifts made the first surge, notching five straight goals to lead 9-3

Four Super Shots, three of them to Sophie Dwyer, lifted the Giants to within three at quarter-time.

The Giants rallied early in the second quarter and briefly hit the front, but the Swifts outscored them  9-2 over the last five minutes to lead 38-30 at the half.

Their advantage didn’t fall below seven in the second half, with three Helen Housby Super Shots helping the Swifts boost their advantage to 13 going into the final term.

The Swifts piled on the misery from then on, outscoring the hapless Giants 22-11 in the last quarter.

Intense pressure from both sides contributed to 48 turnovers, with the Giants coughing up the ball on 29 of those occasions.

With her fellow co-captain and midcourter Maddy Proud missing a second straight game with a knee issue, Paige Hadley had another impactful game for the Swifts.

She notched her team’s first three intercepts and a game-high 26 goal assists, with shooters Sam Wallace-Joseph (37/40) and Housby (24/31) the chief beneficiaries.

“That’s a really important game for us and we were at a tipping point in the season and I think that’s just going to set us up for a lot of success,” Housby told Fox.