Lightning prepare for shot at grand final glory
NETBALL: The high-flying Sunshine Coast Lightning is preparing to strike in what is expected to be a dog-eat-dog affair to decide who will be crowned inaugural Suncorp Super Netball champions.
After the elation and relief of a heart-stopping one-point win over the Melbourne Vixens in the major semi-final on Saturday, the focus is firmly on the challenge ahead.
The Vixens will play Giants this Saturday, to determine who the Lightning will have to overcome on June 17 to lift the grand final trophy.
Goalkeeper and captain Geva Mentor, a rock at the heart of the Lightning's defence, said a change of mindset had steeled her side, who started faster than usual against the Vixens.
Their renowned defensive pressure was in full swing and another fast finish helped them to the narrowest of wins.
Mentor said the week would be spent recuperating mentally and physically, before the team gets together to watch the preliminary final.
Not wanting to get too far ahead of herself, Mentor admitted a grand final win with the Lightning would be "right up there" with her career-best moments.
Meanwhile coach Noeline Taurua hoped the Vixens and Giants battered each other on Saturday night, ahead of the grand final, and hopefully paved the way for a strong win for her side.
"I would love if we didn't have to go into that (one-point thriller)," she said.