Sunshine Coast Lightning can officially boast a fifth consecutive Suncorp Super Netball Finals appearance in 2021, the only Club in the competition to hold that record.
The incredible feat is made more impressive given this is only Lightning’s fifth season in existence.
We look at Lightning’s finals campaigns by the numbers and break down some key milestones.
Lightning has competed in 9 finals, winning 6 – including 2 Grand Finals. This weekend’s Semi-Final will be the Club’s 10th.
Of the current playing group, only Steph Wood, Laura Scherian and Karla Pretorius have taken to the court in all 9 matches – however Cara Koenen and Maddy McAuliffe have been an influential part of the squad in each of those games in their developing years.
Pretorius (then Mostert) was also named Grand Final MVP for her efforts in the 2017 Premiership win.
Proving just how tightly fought the finals series can be, two matches have been decided by the smallest of margins, while the 2018 Grand Final was won by just 3 goals.
Lightning’s finals history with Saturday’s opponent West Coast Fever specifically is heated, having played twice over the years.
Once in the 2019 Lightning Premiership and again in the knockout 2020 Preliminary Final, which ended our Club’s finals campaign last year.
Lightning have never played finals out of Nissan Arena – however, the record in Brisbane is reasonable with two wins from three occasions.
From the other 2021 top four sides, Lightning defeated GIANTS Netball in the 2018 Grand Final, following up the next year, knocking them out of finals contention in the 2019 Preliminary Final.
Lightning’s recent history with NSW Swifts in finals will certainly be fresh in Members and fans minds – defeating Swifts in front of a vocal USC Stadium crowd in the 2019 Major Semi-Final only to be defeated a fortnight after in the Grand Final.
Maddie Hinchliffe is the only player in the squad to have never played in a final – the Wing Defence made her Lightning debut just last week in Round 14, having played one game for Queensland Firebirds in 2019.
Of Lightning’s other new additions in 2021, Kate Shimmin has not played in finals since 2013 with former club Adelaide Thunderbirds and is excited for this opportunity.
Meanwhile, Mahalia Cassidy has played in just one final – the Queensland Firebirds 1 goal loss to Lightning in 2018!
Sunshine Coast Lightning will take on West Coast Fever at Nissan Arena on Saturday 14 August from 3pm. Limited tickets are now available via Ticketek, while supporters can also watch the game live via the Channel 9 broadcast.