THE Women’s SBL is down to three undefeated and three winless teams after Round 3 action where the Rockingham Flames, Lakeside Lightning and Joondalup Wolves continued their winning ways while the Willetton Tigers got on the board with two strong wins.
The Round 3 Women’s SBL action began on Friday night with the Lakeside Lightning beating the Perth Redbacks 85-62 while the Joondalup Wolves defeated the East Perth Eagles 87-46 and the Willetton Tigers downed the Kalamunda Eastern Suns 67-49.
Then on Saturday night, the Perry Lakes Hawks won their first game of 2019 defeating the Perth Redbacks 80-66 with the Mandurah Magic downing the East Perth Eagles 82-46, the Willetton Tigers prevailing 73-66 over the South West Slammers and the Rockingham Flames beating the Cockburn Cougars 105-62.
ROUND 3 WOMEN’S SBL PREVIEW
ROUND 3 SPOTLIGHT: LADY WOLFPACK STAY UNBEATEN OVER EAGLES
The Round 3 results leave the Joondalup Wolves and Lakeside Lightning with 3-0 records to start the season while the Rockingham Flames are also unbeaten at 2-0.
The Mandurah Magic has started well too at 3-1 while the Cockburn Cougars are now 2-1 with the South West Slammers and Warwick Senators both 1-1, and the Willetton Tigers 2-2.
That leaves the Perry Lakes Hawks with a 1-2 record and then the Kalamunda Eastern Suns (0-3), Perth Redbacks (0-3) and East Perth Eagles (0-4) remain winless in 2019.
LAKESIDE LIGHTNING 85 defeated TEXTURE WA PERTH REDBACKS 62
Friday night’s Women’s SBL action began at Lakeside Recreation Centre with Lakeside hosting the Perth Redbacks in a battle featuring the teams who finished top two at the end of last year’s regular season.
But Lakeside continued its strong start to its championship defence coming away with the 85-62 victory on their home floor.
The Lightning improve to a 3-0 record on the season and have now won 20 matches in-a-row dating back to last year. Meanwhile the Redbacks are now 0-2 under new coach Craig Allen.
Lakeside’s three wins now to open 2019 have come with an average winning margin of 18.7 points while the Redbacks were unable to hit back from their Round 1 home loss to the Warwick Senators with the Round 2 bye in between.
The Redbacks were able to stick with the Lightning early and even led by one at quarter-time. But the Lightning went into half-time leading 40-37. The reigning champions then pulled away in the second half including 27-11 in the fourth quarter to win by 23.
Three-time MVP Ali Schwagmeyer had her best scoring game so far this season to finish the night with 24 points, five rebounds, five steals and three assists.
Import guard GeAnna Luaulu-Summers also had 14 points and five rebounds for Lakeside with Ellyce Ironmonger contributing 12 points and 15 rebounds, and Courtney Green 11 points and seven boards.
Captain Courtney Byrnes had a good all-round game with four points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals despite shooting 1/12 while 307-game veteran Jess Van Schie contributed two points, six assists, five boards and three steals.
The Redbacks young star Rosie Deegan did all she could to lift her team finishing with 21 points and 12 rebounds on shooting 9/16 from the field.
Denielle Lipscombe added 17 points and seven rebounds with Jess Jakens contributing six points and eight boards, and Jess Hughes six points and two assists in her 100th SBL appearance.
SCHWEIGEN EAST PERTH EAGLES 46 lost to CHAMBERS FRANKLYN JOONDALUP CITY WOLVES 87
The Joondalup Wolves continued their winning start to the season with a win over the East Perth Eagles on Friday night.
It’s a dramatically new-look Lady Wolfpack team under coach Charles Nix and after opening the season with strong wins over the Perry Lakes Hawks and Warwick Senators, they improved to 3-0 on Friday night.
The Wolves beat the Eagles 87-46 at Mirrabooka’s Herb Graham Recreation Centre despite the absence of two of their star recruits for 2019, Georgia Denehey and Isabelle Miotti.
Despite a big start from Joondalup who scored the game’s first 10 points and led 28-12 by quarter-time, East Perth put in an improved showing in the second period and took it right up to one of the championship fancies for 2019.
The Eagles managed to win the second quarter 18 points to 17 but the Wolves made some adjustments at half-time and came out to old hold East Perth to just 16 second half points.
They scored 42 themselves for the 41-point victory on the back of a monstrous rebounding advantage, with 60 to 32. They had 21 offensive boards for 21 second chance points.
But of concern for coach Nix would have been 31 turnovers despite still winning by 41 points.
Chelsea Belcher top-scored for Joondalup on the night with 17 points, four rebounds and two steals with captain Amy Kidner adding 16 points and three rebounds.
Mikayla Pirini finished with 10 points and five assists while Olivia Basso had 10 points, four rebounds and two assists, Tahni Geel eight points, Amber Land six points, 12 rebounds, three assists and three steals, and Kayla Steindl six points, 13 boards, two assists, two steals and two blocked shots.
Janee Johnson top-scored for East Perth with 15 points, eight rebounds and four steals with Bree Fisher contributing 10 points, three boards, three steals and two assists, and Ashley Munrowd-Harris six points.
WILLETTON TIGERS 67 defeated KALAMUNDA EASTERN SUNS 49
Willetton and Kalamunda both came into Friday night’s clash at Willetton Basketball Stadium yet to taste victory in 2019, but it was the Tigers who changed that with a strong defensive showing to win 67-49.
The Tigers and Eastern Suns did battle in the quarter finals of last year with Kalamunda winning to advance to the semi finals against Lakeside, but neither side has been at full strength yet at 2019 and the results have shown.
Willetton started the season losing to Cockburn and Lakeside with their imports yet to arrive while Kalamunda lost both their games to Mandurah only by a combined three points, home and away, despite playing without an import.
That set up an important early season game on Friday night for both teams and it was Willetton who responded to come away with the 18-point victory.
Scores were tied by quarter-time, but then Willetton held Kalamunda to just eight points in the second quarter to go into half-time leading 42-28.
The Suns managed only six points then in the third term with the Tigers extending their lead to 54-34 by three quarter-time before winning their first game of the season to the tune of 18 points.
There were plenty of rebounds to go around with Willetton collecting 52 of them and Kalamunda 47 while the Tigers shot just 22/72 from the field at 30 per cent and 6/25 from three-point range at 24 per cent.
Kalamunda, meanwhile, shot 16/64 from the floor at 25 per cent and 3/24 from beyond the arc at 12 per cent.
Emma Gandini was a player highlighted by coach Simon Parker as needing to go to another level this season. She is doing that and on Friday night led Willetton with 15 points, 11 rebounds, six steals and three assists.
Emily Counsel added 11 points and three rebounds, Taryn Priestly 11 points and two assists, Hayley Winter 10 points, six rebounds, three assists and two steals, Imogen Ayliffe 10 points, 10 rebounds, three blocks and two steals, and captain Desiree Kelley seven points and five rebounds.
It was a tough night for Kalamunda with Jewel Williams top-scoring with 13 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Jennie Rintala added 11 points and 11 rebounds with Rebecca Motroni contributing six points, three rebounds and two assists. But 156-game point guard Lauren Jeffers struggled against Willetton’s pressure with two points on 0/8 shooting and nine turnovers, despite five rebounds and three assists.
TEXTURE WA PERTH REDBACKS 66 lost to PERRY LAKES HAWKS 80
The Perth Redbacks returned home on Saturday night attempting to win their first game of the season, but it was the Perry Lakes Hawks who achieved that feat with the 80-66 victory.
Neither the Redbacks nor Hawks had won so far in 2019 entering the clash at Belmont Oasis with Perth coming off losing to Lakeside 24 hours earlier while Perry Lakes hadn’t played since going down to Rockingham the previous Friday.
The Lady Hawks came out an inspired outfit putting up 28 points to 16 in the first quarter and they still went into half-time leading 40-27.
But the Redbacks came back strongly in the third term with 27 points of their own to be only two points behind entering the last quarter.
However, Perry Lakes had the answers with a dominant last term to go on and win by 14 to improve to 1-2 while Perth slipped to 0-3.
The Hawks ended up taking 10 more shots for the game than the Redbacks largely on the back of forcing Perth into 23 turnovers from which they scored 22 points from.
Perry Lakes did well sharing the ball too ending the night with 25 assists on 30 made field goals, while taking care of the ball impressively with just the 11 turnovers.
Sarah Donovan had an impressive outing for the Hawks finishing with 19 points, six rebounds, three steals and two blocked shots on an efficient 7/9 shooting display.
Rebecca Benson continued her tremendous start to her return SBL season as she now approaches her 200-game milestone, delivering another 21 points, seven assists and six rebounds for Perry Lakes.
Import guard Jamie Cherry also produced 15 points and 10 assists with Annika Renkema adding 10 points and six rebounds, and Kristan Teasdale four points, nine rebounds and three assists.
Rosie Deegan put in another strong showing for the Redbacks with 22 points, 13 rebounds and six assists. Jess Jakens added 17 points and 13 rebounds, Alix Hayward 11 points, five boards and three blocked shots, and Denielle Lipscombe seven points and 10 rebounds.
CACHET HOMES MANDURAH MAGIC 82 defeated SCHWEIGEN EAST PERTH EAGLES 46
Even with four of their stars sidelined and losing another during the game, the Mandurah Magic made it three straight wins this season beating the East Perth Eagles 82-46 on Saturday night.
After losing their opening game of the season to Lakeside in what was a Grand Final rematch from last year, the Magic have won three games in-a-row to be building some early season momentum despite being well short of full strength.
It was a big task for East Perth to go down to Mandurah the night after hosting the Joondalup Wolves, but the Eagles did continue to battle away despite the eventual 36-point loss which doubled as their 36th loss in succession going back to 2017.
The Magic were coming off back-to-back thrilling wins over Kalamunda by a combined three points but on Saturday night at Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre, they were still without Ginka Palusna, Carly Boag and Bree Klasztorny.
Kelly Bailey was also out after going down hurt the previous week against the Suns while Casey Mihovilovich lasted less than seven minutes in her 470th SBL game before also going off hurt.
Mandurah still had enough weapons to control the contest having started well with 27 points to 13 in the first quarter and to end up leading 44-21 at half-time before ending up winning by 36 points.
The Magic’s pressure was able to force the Eagles into 27 turnovers from which they scored 23 points off while dishing out 23 assists on 30 made field goals.
New Magic import Delany Junkermeir produced the best game of her short SBL career with 26 points, seven rebounds, four assists and two steals on shooting 9/18 from the field and 5/11 from downtown.
Rachel Halleen produced eight points, seven assists, four rebounds and two steals for Mandurah while Jemma Gatti added eight points and six boards, Kasey Miegel six points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals, Rachel Pettit six points and Olivia Bassett-Scarfe six points.
Janee Johnson top-scored for East Perth with 14 points and five rebounds with Bree Fisher contributing seven points, five steals and four boards, and Cameron Flynn six points, five rebounds, four assists and four stelas.
PRINT SYNC SOUTH WEST SLAMMERS 66 lost to WILLETTON TIGERS 73
The Willetton Tigers had to come from behind but they did so successfully to make it two wins inside 24 hours beating the South West Slammers 73-66 on Saturday night at Eaton Recreation Centre.
The Slammers were playing their first game since beating East Perth back in Round 1 while the Tigers came into the game fresh off their first win of the season at home to Kalamunda on Friday night.
It was a tight contest from the outset with Willetton leading by just a point at quarter-time and then going into half-time leading 36-33.
South West turned it around in the third quarter to head into the fourth quarter with scores all square at 52-52 apiece.
Kate Fielding then ensured the Slammers were on top by four points when she scored with four minutes remaining. They still led by three points when Fielding scored again a minute later before Desiree Kelley tied scores with a three for Willetton.
Another jumper from Fielding saw scores level again with 1:30 remaining but from there Willetton hit the game’s last seven points made up of four Emma Gandini free-throws before she also nailed a triple on the buzzer.
The Slammers did outrebound the Tigers 52-43 including 24 offensive boards for 22 second chance points. But ultimately they only went at 1/22 from three-point range which proved decisive.
Emma Gandini backed up her standout showing for the Tigers in the win over the Eastern Suns with another strong performance against the Slammers made up of 18 points, seven rebounds, five assists and four steals.
Desiree Kelley also had 13 points, seven rebounds, three steals and two blocks for Willetton, Imogen Ayliffe 13 points and five boards, Emily Counsel 13 points and three rebounds, Hayley Winter eight points, four boards and four assists, and Taryn Priestly seven points, eight assists and six rebounds.
Brittany Montgomery top-scored for the Slammers with 18 points and 11 rebounds while Makailah Dyer finished with 15 points, seven boards, five assists and four steals, Kate Fielding 13 points and four rebounds. Courtney Bayliss ended up going 1/15 from the field and 0/10 from long-range.
ROUND 1 FITNESS COCKBURN COUGARS 62 lost to CLASS 1 ORTHODONTICS ROCKINGHAM FLAMES 105
The Rockingham Flames continued their impressive start to the season with a 105-62 road win over the Cockburn Cougars on Saturday night.
Both teams entered Saturday’s clash at Wally Hagan Stadium undefeated with the Cougars having beaten Willetton and East Perth to start its 2019 campaign while Rockingham won big over Perry Lakes last Friday night
That meant there was plenty of intrigue entering the contest on Saturday but the Flames blew things open early with 31 points to 12 in the first quarter.
They backed that up with another 25-12 second period to go into half-time leading 56-24. The Cougars actually won the third term but the Flames again got rolling in the last with 28 points to 15 to come away with the 43-point triumph.
It was a commanding showing inside from Rockingham who finished the game with 50 points inside the paint with their depth also impressive with 45 points from the bench.
Janelle Adams top-scored for the Flames with 17 points, six rebounds, two assists and two steals with Christina Boag contributing 14 points, eight boards, three assists, three steals and two blocked shots.
Maddie Allen finished the evening with 13 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two blocks while Ariana Hetherington had 12 points, four boards and three assists, Chelsea Petrik 10 points, five assists and four rebounds, and Tayah Burrows 10 points, three assists and two rebounds.
Kisha Lee couldn’t quite back up her 38 points from the week before for Cockburn finishing with 15 points, three rebounds and two assists despite going 3/5 shooting from downtown.
Akim Lual also scored 15 points and eight rebounds for the Cougars while Ruby Benn contributed 12 points, six assists, three steals and three boards, and Haylee De Sousa six points, three steals and two rebounds.