The JCU Townsville Fire have suffered a heart-breaking loss to the Sydney Uni Flames to round out a disappointing road trip.
Fresh off last night’s capitulation against Dandenong, the Fire were intent on making a statement and looked poised to do just that as they opened up a double digit lead in the shadows of quarter-time.
Mia Murray picked up where she left off with seven early points and was well supported by Micaela Cocks, who knocked down two long range bombs.
Back-to-back triples from the Flames, however, cut the margin to five at the first change before the Fire broke away again in the second.
Suzy Batkovic started to impose her way into the game as her first six points came from the line before doubling her production midway through the second term.
But the four-time WNBL MVP was held scoreless for the remainder of the game and the Flames made the Fire pay.
Another buzzer-beater to close out the opening half ensured the Flames were in touch at the main change before making the game-winning move in the third term.
Suffocating the Fire, the Flames claimed an 18-8 quarter and at one point had restricted the two-time reigning WNBL champions to just one of 11 shots for the period, along with seven turnovers.
The fourth quarter didn’t start any better for the Fire before back-to-back triples from Natasha Cloud provided the impetus for a get-out-of-jail win, but it wasn’t to be.
Needing a score to clinch the game, the Fire walked away empty handed as they ended their road trip with two disappointing losses.
Murray was named the First Things First MVP after posting 18 points, three assists and three steals, while Batkovic (12 points and 10 rebounds), Cocks (11 points) and Darcee Garbin (10 points and eight rebounds) battled valiantly.
Click here to see full box scores from tonight’s match between the Fire and the Flames.