After a tough week for the WNBL, particularly for the SEQ Stars, Friday night’s battle between MAC Adelaide Lightning and SEQ reflected strength and determination from both sides.
The Lightning came out hard from the start of the game, leading for most of it but falling short in the final few minutes of the fourth quarter with a number of Lightning players in foul trouble and SEQ hitting some clutch shots.
The starters played well, Mikaela Ruef finishing with a double-double (13 points, 16 rebounds), Leilani Mitchell with 24 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, Kelly Bowen with 10 points, 9 rebounds, Jess Good with 6 points, 7 rebounds and Kayla Standish with 19 points, 7 rebounds. Additionally, Tara Robinson and Morgan Yaeger contributed a combined 9 points off the bench and fought hard at both ends of the court.
“The game was fast flowing and high quality throughout the first three quarters and we lead briefly by 8-10 late in the third quarter,” said Head Coach Tracy York.
“At the start of the fourth we took a 7 point lead which SEQ erased early with some exceptional shooting.”
“The last quarter saw SEQ hit some tough shots and with Kelly Bowen and Kayla Standish both fouling out, as well as starter Mikaela Dombkins sidelined with injury, SEQ got on top and we couldn’t make the plays and get the stops we needed in the last couple of minutes.”
Jordan Hooper killed us on the boards, finishing with 31 points, 12 rebounds and South Australian, Lauren Mansfield was extremely quick and efficient with 21 points, 4 rebounds, 7 assists, as well as Rachel Jarry finishing with a double-double (12 points, 14 rebounds).
“The girls played well but of course we are disappointed we couldn’t finish off the last quarter as well as we had played the first three,” York said.
Credit to the Stars for fighting hard despite the 48 hours they had endured prior to arriving in Adelaide. They’re a great side and we wish them all the best for the rest of the season.
What the Lightning has implemented so far has resulted in eight wins and the whole team has demonstrated significant improvement since the beginning of the season. With just three more games left in the season, the Lightning will aim to get a few more wins under their belt and look forward to seeing their strong fan backing at their last game on Saturday, 20 February.