Dumfries eventually came out on top in an engaging contest in Carlisle as a rampant fourth quarter took the game away from the visitors. The home side edged ahead in the first quarter and were two goals ahead before the Penrith pressure back on the Blues in the middle quarters of the match. The Blues team responded with a comprehensive defensive display and tactical forward play to eventually run out comfortable winners.
The opening quarter started with both sides easing into the game with a sense of trepidation on court. It was certainly apparent that there had been a prolonged gap between the Dumfries Blues last match as they made tentative inroads into their opposition. Bethany Hutton opened the scoring and a quick turnover from the Dumfries Blues defence had them sniffing an early lead. The first quarter ended with Blues having a slender lead 8-6, a fair reflection of the action on court.
It was an equally open start to the second quarter as Dumfries opened the scoring and move forward with added diligence and fluidity. Quick hands from Paula Craven found Karen Reed in space to finish off a particularly stylish move. Kayleigh Proudfoot had been bought into Goal Shooter at the start of the quarter allowing Megan Laverie to revert to Wing Defence, which enabled the Blues to race 5 goals clear of the Penrith. Penrith however fought back with tight defending and blocking and forcing turnovers to finish the quarter just the two goals behind at 18-16.
The coaches decided against making any changes at half-time and this tactic paid dividends for Dumfries Blues as they started to enjoy a period of fluent play which saw the teams best move of the match. Nicola Parkinson and Emma Pool secured a turnover in the Blues defensive circle and quickly moved the ball up through mid-court for Kayleigh Proudfoot to finish off the move. Dumfries Blues extended their lead to 5 goals finishing the third quarter 28 – 23 in the lead.
Andrew Reed made changes to the line up for the final quarter introducing Georgia Marshall into Goal Keeper and switching the shooters. Early exchanges of scores quickly gave way as the Blues started to dominate proceedings. Penrith were double marking Bethany Hutton (Goal Attack) which enabled Paula Craven (Centre) and Karen Reed (Goal Shooter) to work the Penrith Goal Keeper and ensure the scoreboard continued to tick over in Dumfries’ favour.
The Dumfries defence started to pluck out the increasingly desperate long balls into the circle with Georgia Marshall making more than her fair share of intercepts. With five minutes to go the gap had opened to eight at 35 - 27.
As the result became more certain the hosts attack started to receive closer attention from the Penrith defence, but at this stage the experience of senior players would not allow them to be ruffled. A last minute intercept from the Penrith Wing Defense encapsulated the spirit of the Penrith team but it was quite fitting that the last word would lie with Karen Reed who was named player of the match. The ice cool attacker sunk one last goal as the final whistle sounded to cap a fine display for Dumfries.