THE Kalamunda Eastern Suns kept their playoff hopes alive, the Mandurah Magic consolidated top spot and the Willetton Tigers maintained their top four dream with the three teams winning in the Women’s SBL on Saturday night.
The Week 15 Saturday night Women’s SBL matches saw the Kalamunda Eastern Suns beat the South West Slammers 83-77, the Mandurah Magic defeat the Perth Redbacks 90-61 and the Willetton Tigers down the Rockingham Flames 78-55.
That came after another three matches on Friday night with the Perry Lakes Hawks beating the Cockburn Cougars 88-81, the South West Slammers defeating the East Perth Eagles 85-69 and the Stirling Senators downing the Rockingham Flames 73-67.
Saturday night’s action got underway at Eaton Recreation Centre with the Slammers hosting the Eastern Suns.
Both teams went into the game with four wins for the season and needing to win to remain in the playoff hunt. The Slammers were coming off a win on Friday over the Eagles at Morley, but the Suns were fresh and worked their way on top early.
The Suns were on top virtually all night leading by as much as 11 points before winning by six.
Jennie Rintala had a big night for Kalamunda inside with 23 points and 11 rebounds on shooting 10-of-16 from the field.
Devanny King added 19 points, nine rebounds and eight assists for the Eastern Suns to threaten a triple-double while Mel Moyle ended up with 14 points and Rebecca Motroni 12 to go with five rebounds.
Courtney Bayliss top-scored for the Slammers with 22 points and eight rebounds while Tayah Burrows was impressive with 18 points and four assists.
Brittany Hodges also had 16 points and seven rebounds for South West and Georgia Denehey 13 points, four boards and four assists.
The Magic won a ninth straight game to improve to 17-1 and remain clear on top of the Women’s SBL standings with another thumping 29-point win over the Redbacks at Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre.
That sets up a tantalising match up at the same venue with the Magic and the Lady Hawks next Saturday that will likely determine top spot.
The Magic broke the game open in the second quarter with 24 points to 14 and then went on with it in the second half with 44 points to 29 to end up winning by 29.
Nici Gilday was again terrific for the Magic leading the way in the back court with 29 points, six rebounds, five assists and two steals on shooting 9-of-16 from the floor, 2-of-4 from deep and 9-of-10 at the line.
Carly Boag added 22 points, 13 rebounds, eight steals and five assists in another tremendous all-round performance with Casey Mihovilovich finishing with 16 points and six steals, Rachel Halleen 11 points and Bree Klasztorny six to go with six rebounds.
The Redbacks’ struggles continued despite 15 points and five rebounds from Rebecca Benson, 14 points from Jess Jakens, 10 points from Bianca Donovan and 10 points from Emilee Harmon.
Willetton and Rockingham have been the Women’s SBL powerhouses in recent seasons and that hasn’t quite continued in 2017 with the loss of some title-winning stars and with youth being blooded.
But the Flames are a little worse off at the moment particularly with Jacinta Bourne’s season over and that was on show on Saturday night with Willetton’s 23-point win at Willetton Basketball Stadium.
The win improved the Tigers to a 9-7 record to remain in touch for a top four finish while the Flames have now lost nine straight to be 4-14.
Stacey Barr had a good night for Willetton with 31 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals on 6-of-14 shooting from downtown.
Jess Hootmann added 13 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and three steals for the Tigers while Emma Lobb contributed 13 points and six boards, and Sophie Maines six points, 10 rebounds and four assists.
Chastity Reed top-scored for Rockingham with 24 points and 11 rebounds while Dena English contributed 13 points six assists, three rebounds and three steals.
Lastly on Sunday, the Cockburn Cougars host the East Perth Eagles.
FRIDAY NIGHT ROUND 15 WOMEN’S SBL RESULTS
Perry Lakes Hawks 88 defeated Cockburn Cougars 81
East Perth Eagles 69 lost to South West Slammers 85
Rockingham Flames 67 lost to Stirling Senators 73
SATURDAY NIGHT ROUND 15 WOMEN’S SBL RESULTS
South West Slammers 77 lost to Kalamunda Eastern Suns 83
Mandurah Magic 90 defeated Perth Redbacks 61
Willetton Tigers 78 defeated Rockingham Flames 55
SUNDAY ROUND 15 WOMEN’S SBL FIXTURES
Cockburn Cougars v East Perth Eagles – Wally Hagan Stadium 12pm
Photo by June Halliday