AFTER a hard fought victory Koroit coach Stacey O'Sullivan can now feel more comfortable about the depth of her side.
The Saints, thanks to captain Emily-Rose Finnigan, raised the 2018 Hampden league open grade premiership flag with style on Saturday as they scrapped past Camperdown in a 42-36 victory at Victoria Park.
O'Sullivan hit the court for the first time in three years and dug into her reserves to cover youngsters Zahli Adams, Belle Baker, who were away at zone trials, and the injured Rachel Dobson.
Dobson left the court with foot soreness in the first term. O'Sullivan chose to rest the mid-court player for the rest of the six-goal victory but said she would be available to play on Good Friday against South Warrnambool.
But the Saints mentor said she was pleased her depleted with how her side was able to rise to the challenges the Magpies threw its way.
"At the start we were a bit erratic and we needed to settle a little bit and it showed we were down but able to fight our way into it and settle," O'Sullivan said.
"We had to be patient with our passing into Nell (Mitchell). The biggest thing we spoke about was fighting back and not giving up because it's easy to do that if you look like you are going to get rolled.
"The girls didn't do that and we did rest a couple of players for a quarter off because they are coming back from injury. it was just a hard fought victory."
O'Sullivan said she was pleased with the efforts of Mitchell, who finished as the game's top-scorer with 32 goals to her name.
Camperdown coach Brooke Richardson said she was starting to see connections building throughout her side.
"Especially our goalies because they are a new combination and same as our defenders," she said.
"Today we had some different combinations to last week so it's about getting the confidence down the court with each other.
"I thought we had lovely free-flowing plays down the court and the girls held their own in the ring."
Richardson was playing alongside her sister Amanda Gilbert and at the other end Jess Cameron and Krystal Baker were working together.
The defender said Gilbert and Cameron were new to the Hampden league and were starting to find their feet in the top-grade side.
"I thought Jess played much better today and I thought Amanda had a hard task on Nell (Mitchell) but she did really well," she said.
Richardson said there was not too much she would change after the six-goal loss.
"I don't think there was anything that we didn't do well they are just a really good side," she said.
"You have to be on top of your game for four quarters against Koroit to beat them and for us it's now just about playing four strong quarters."
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