Wahine Toa 1 and Naumai 1 played out one of the tightest games so far in this year's Northland premier netball competition on Friday, with Naumai taking the win 54-41.
After a nail-biting first two quarters, where the scores were separated by just a few goals, Naumai started to pull away and exploit space in the middle of the court in the final two quarters.
The young Wahine Toa team kept pace with their opposition for much of the game until fatigue began to take its toll, allowing Naumai to take control of the round two fixture.
"It was a very tight game, however in all fairness, our fitness let us down a bit," Wahine Toa coach Ivy Te Nana said.
"[Naumai] played a beautiful game, they just dug deep and our fitness let us down in the last quarter."
After a heavy 61-27 defeat to Manawanui White in round one, Te Nana said her team struggled to connect a great defensive effort to their shooters and make use of their turnovers.
"Mainly, we struggled through the mid-court in transition to get ball to our shooters.
"Our defenders, Madaya Butler and Wai Pryor, were outstanding turning the ball over but it was just breaking down in the mid-court."
Despite the two losses, Te Nana knew her side could improve the more they get used to the premier style of play, having come from the premier reserve grade last year.
"I admire that they are getting out there, not being afraid and their resilience of not giving up," she said.
"I'm very confident that we are going to build from this and learn a lot."
In the round's other games, Whangaruru beat The Bubz 42-30 and Manawanui White beat Whangārei Girls' High School 68-49