In the fifth session of Spain’s women’s first division goalball league that got underway earlier this evening in Madrid, the Canary Islands took on Montesinos Murcia. The game started off with a goal by Canary Islands on their first shot. Number 2 for the Canary Islands on a shot threw the ball pretty much straight out-of-bounds. Number 3 for the Canarias was in the center and again dominated the game. Murcia scored another goal off a shot from either 4 or 3 . Number 2 for the Canary Islands did not have court sense on her side and when shooting, tended to throw it out pretty close to where she was.
Murcia took a time out at 6:54 left in the first half. Number 4 Rosa for Murcia also at times threw the ball out more than getting a decent shot on goal, though she did a good job and scored her team’s third goal at 6:03 left in the first half. The Canary Islands then made a substitution, with number 2 leaving and number 5 coming in.
Murcia got to take a penalty shot as the Canary Islands took too long in making their change. Number 3 shot for her side, with number 3 for the Canary Islands making a great save that resulted in a block out that almost went into the goal. Number 4 shot the ball straight down. Number 5 for the Canary Islands dropped a second too late and the ball just skirted under her. The game stopped at 4:30 because the shin guard for number 3 on Canary Islands broke. As she did not have a spare handy, she continued playing.
The level of talk on the court was at times very minimal, beyond requests for the ball to be passed for shooting purposes. The Murcia side looked composed, in control, and in position for most of the game while the Canarias side often looked scattered, with very little sense of where they were on the court. Murcia took a time out with almost no time left on the clock. The team was half a second too late or their shot would have resulted in a goal. Murcia led 4 – 0 at the half.
At the start of the second half, the Canary Islands made two substitutions, bringing number 4 and 9 in. Number 3 took off her other shin guard, and moved to her left side. Murcia scored early in the second half off a ball that bounced off the Canary Islands player. The change in position for number 3 was something that took a while for her to get used to as early shots to the left were very out, and playing in front led to almost collisions with number 5 playing on the right. Murcia scored again off a ball that bounced off a Canary Islands player, with none of the players having court awareness to stop the snail pace moving ball that eventually went into goal.
The Murcia side in this game appeared to have talent that was distributed equally across all the teams, not just their player in the center. This was especially true when it came to shooting. Number 4 scored for Murcia as number 4 for the Canary Islands appeared to be completely lost on the court and was using the raised line to figure out her placement. Following this, the Canary Islands took a timeout and number 4 was moved to her left with number 3 put back in the center. This went on a bit longer as number 1 for the Canary Islands needed her glasses checked.
Murcia scored again when 3 for Canary Islands was hugely out of position and left what amounted to a wide open net for the Murcia side to capitalize on. After moving back to the center, number 3 for the Canary Islands appeared to throw every ball out and sunk her team. She was on her feet when a ball rolled right past her into goal for the game to go 9 – 0. There was another time out and the coached specifically made a point of walking straight to number 3, saying something to her and then soon walking back to the bench with almost nothing said to other players. The game ended 9 – 0.
The competition is an important one as it gave additional high level domestic experience to Spain’s women national team players. The team currently has ten players, all of whom were competing today. The national squad is still looking to qualify for the 2016 Summer Paralympics, and those ten will eventually be cut down to five ahead of the 2015 IBSA World Games in Seoul. The team plans to use as their qualifying path as going through the European Championships is much more difficult as there is much greater depth in Europe than there is in the Americas where there are only really three teams, and Africa which is still looking for a women’s team to be created.