THE Perth Redbacks opened up with 20 of the game’s first 23 points at Belmont Oasis on Friday night to end up beating the East Perth Eagles 81-48 but coach Craig Allen wants his team to start finding more consistency.
The Redbacks have had a remarkably up and down start to the 2020 West Coast Classic suffering 36 and 20-point losses to the Joondalup Wolves and Perry Lakes Hawks while now having recorded wins by 33, 17 and 33 points over Mandurah, Cockburn and East Perth.
They hold a 3-2 record now with their first three rounds of the West Coast Classic done and dusted to see them staying touch for a finals position which will only be made up of the top four teams, but Allen knows more consistency is what’s needed.
“It’s interesting with the scores and I think part of it is the nature of this competition, as in there’s a lot of young kids playing etc,” Allen said after the game.
“For us in particular that inconsistency comes from young players stepping up into the group and trying to work out their role, and seeing how to play in a bit more of a structured environment than they are used to.
“I think that can count for a lot of our inconsistencies I think and probably the gaps between our performances in games. It’s about 100 per cent focus 100 per cent of the time, and that’s not what is happening.”
East Perth was looking to be more competitive on Friday night after putting up just 31 points in a 52-point loss to Mandurah last Saturday night, but helping those hopes was the return of Bree and Eryn Fisher for the Eagles.
It didn’t make an immediate difference, though, even though East Perth scored the first two points of the game thanks to Eryn Fisher. Jaide Gowland did land a free-throw soon after but from there the Redbacks took control.
The home team scored the last 13 points straight in the first quarter to lead 20-3 by quarter-time before Fiona Madden stopped the run by scoring for East Perth to start the second period.
From there the Eagles did put up a good fight the rest of the way and the Redbacks were only gradually able to extend their lead throughout the evening.
The Redbacks’ lead was as much as 35 points before setting at 33 by the final buzzer and to their credit the Eagles would have been able to take something from the last three quarters of the game.
As for the Redbacks, it was 16-year-old teen sensation Brooke Malone who had a night out. She produced a stunning performance showing how bright her future is finishing with 23 points and six rebounds on 7/11 shooting from the floor and 4/7 from three-point territory.
Reigning Wandering Distillery SBL Shootaround Player of the Week Jess Jakens had another 12 points, seven rebounds and four assists for the Redbacks too.
Sarah Allen added nine points too for Perth, Denielle Lipscombe eight points, nine rebounds and three assists, Briana Bailey seven points and three boards, Shenae Hartree seven points and three assists, and Maddie Allen four points to go with 11 rebounds and four assists.
Afterwards, the Redbacks coach was happy to win but knows there’s lot of improvement still needed from his group.
“You are always happy to win, there’s no doubt about, but going away from that game there is still a lot for us to work on which is the easiest way to say it,” Allen said.
“There’s a lot of things that we are looking for that we probably didn’t deliver in that game, we didn’t execute particularly well out of offensive sets and we didn’t create well for each other to be honest.
“There’s a few things that we want to be known for as a group that we probably didn’t execute that well in that game.”
Eryn Fisher ended the night with 14 points, five rebounds, three steals, three blocked shots and two assists for East Perth with Fiona Madden adding eight points, Jaide Gowland five points and 10 rebounds, and Hannah-Rose Gillis five points.
East Perth now backs up on Saturday night by hosting the South West Slammers at Herb Graham Leisure Centre in the hunt for their first win of 2020.
WEST COAST CLASSIC 2020 – WOMEN
Perth Redbacks 81 defeated East Perth Eagles 48
Willetton Tigers 43 lost to Perry Lakes Hawks 61
Joondalup Wolves 87 defeated Kalamunda Eastern Suns 55
Warwick Senators v Joondalup Wolves – Warwick Stadium 5.00pm
Cockburn Cougars v Lakeside Lightning – Wally Hagan Stadium 5.00pm
East Perth Eagles v South West Slammers – Herb Graham Recreation Centre 5.00pm
Perry Lakes Hawks v Mandurah Magic – Bendat Basketball Centre 6.00pm