Collingwood Magpies have qualified for the Super Netball finals -- and eliminated the Giants -- after upsetting Melbourne Vixens 58-47 in the final match of the regular season.
Needing a victory with at least three bonus points to overtake the Giants for fourth spot, the Magpies took care of business at Melbourne Arena on Sunday by winning the first three quarters then clinching the match by an 11-point margin.
While both the Magpies and Giants finished level on points, the Magpies advanced narrowly on percentage (102.2 to 101.58).
The result will see the Magpies and third-placed Vixens face off again in a minor semi-final derby next Sunday afternoon at the State Netball Hockey Centre.
Defending champions and minor premiers Sunshine Coast Lightning host the second-placed NSW Swifts in Saturday's major semi-final
The Magpies struggled for consistency during the season but a run of three straight wins and a draw over the final month helped them to pip the Giants and and end the career of retirement-bound Giants skipper Kim Green.
"We knew they could play that brand of netball, it's just taken a little bit to get it out of them," said Magpies assistant coach Nicole Richardson.
"Hopefully we've got some momentum going into finals and we're actually there not to make up numbers, we're there to do some damage."
Nat Medhurst (16 goals, 19 assists) used all her big-game experience to steer Collingwood's attack while Ash Brazill again starred in midcourt, her recent move to centre playing a major part in the Magpies' late-season resurgence.
Collingwood's defensive pressure stifled the Vixens' attack throughout the match, leaving coach Simone McKinnis with some work to do ahead of next week's final.
"The Magpies were all over us right from the word go," McKinnis said. "It's disappointing but we have to look to next week."
The Magpies got the start they wanted with a 14-12 opening quarter, their defensive pressure forcing two held-ball calls against the Vixens in the final minutes to earn the first bonus point.
A 7-2 opening to the second term for Collingwood set up an eight-goal advantage but with the Vixens clawing back the margin, Medhurst cooly slotted a late goal to ensure the second bonus point and a 28-25 half-time lead.
With a semi-final place in their sights, the Magpies pulled away in the third quarter with a dominant 17-9 effort before closing out the result in the final stanza.