The South West Jets began their 2013 season with a tough 60-36 loss to Perth Lions at Arena Joondalup last night.
Coach Graham Jones said the squad, that had limited pre-season preparation together, had shown some promising signs against the Lions, who made the semi-finals in 2012.
“We had a couple of good quarters where we pretty much matched them,” he said.
“We were with them early in the first quarter in the last quarter, but we could not sustain it.”
Goal attack Zoe Alberti was solid for the Jets, while emerging key defender Eliza Vlasich and centre Kate Mitchell were also standouts.
In other Round 1 results, Ranges defeated Demons 48-41 while West Coast Falcons beat Wheatbelt Flames 45-39.
The Jets will not have to wait long for a shot at redemption and host Rangers at the Eaton Recreation Centre this Saturday night.
It will be a new-look South West line-up that hits the court in Bunbury, with only two players from last year’s team in the 2013 squad.
Attacking-circle combination Alberti and Lauren Johnston are the only returning players for the Jets.
Jones said much of the squad would need time to gel.
“There are quite a few of them that have never played in the State league before,” he said.
“Some of them have played Under-18s on the odd occasion and some have not played at all.”
While the majority of his line-up will be inexperienced, Jones highlighted goal-shooter Johnston and veteran goal-attack Alberti as a formidable scoring combination.
“They do have that experience (at this level) so hopefully they can form a combination at the attack end and we can score all the goals we need,” he said.
“Then it’s up to the opposition to score theirs.”
Despite Rangers status perennial cellar-dwellers, Jones insisted the Jets would be taking nothing for granted this weekend but did say: “If we play well long enough, we can probably get the job done comfortably.”
This Saturday, the Under-18s match will begin at 5:30pm. The Reserves fixture will get underway at 7:05pm.