North Adelaide: 67
In the opening round of the 2017 Premier League, the North Adelaide Rockets opened their campaign on the road against the Woodville Warriors.
After winning the opening tap to get their season underway, the Rockets were unable to convert after many attempts in the first possession of the game. It was the Warriors who drew first blood. With both sides looking evenly matched at the beginning of the fixture, the fans in attendance were in for a great evening. Woodville were able to take the lead and through a defensive lapse by the Rockets, Woodville’s import Ashley Claussen was able to score an easy 2 to keep the momentum in their favour. Despite this Warrior lead, the Rockets began to fire up and took the lead with over 3.5 minutes to play. North Adelaide were able to push their lead out to 12-points at the end of the first quarter with the score line set at 15-27.
Coming out of the first break, the Rockets continued their strong play by pushing their lead to 16 early. Although, after their opening burst it was the warriors who fought their way back into the matchup by outscoring the Rockets 25-15 by halftime. They were able to do this through consistency on both ends of the floor as Woodville were making the most of their opportunity. Woodville’s Guard Import Ashley Claussen was phenomenal in her Premier League debut flirting with a Triple Double (17-8-9) and was a key contributing factor to the win.
After only being down 2-points coming out of the halftime break, the Warriors scored the opening points of the quarter. Claussen and her fellow Warriors were able to take the lead after capitalising on a bad pass by the Rockets. This was the beginning of a fantastic race for both sides trying to get their first wins of the season. North Adelaide were keeping the margin very close despite their offensive woes. Despite these offensive problems, the Rockets were playing very physical and pushing the Warriors. North Adelaide struggled to find their rhythm during the 3rd term although walked off the court down 5 by the end of the third.
With both sides digging deep for their first win of the season, both clubs started the final quarter offensively slow. North Adelaide came out of the final break hungry for the victory through some fantastic plays which cut the lead to 1-point and then Lauren Thornett’s floater to take the lead. From here, the pressure placed by the Rockets was astounding as they forced a 2nd shot clock violation in 2 consecutive plays. With every possession crucial, both clubs were making the most of their opportunities including Norrisha Victrum’s triple to cut the lead down to 1-point then earning a 1-point lead by making both her free throws with 13.1 seconds remaining in the game. With the atmosphere electric, the Warriors were able to convert on their final possession giving them the 1-point lead sending the crowd into a frenzy. With the final possession of the game, the Warriors were able to keep the Rockets at bay and took their first win of the season and their series.
Jennifer Monroe 20-points (47% FG) and 13 rebounds
Ashley Claussen 17-points (46% FG), 8 rebounds, 9 assists
Tayla Corrigan 17-points (60% shooting) and 7 rebounds.
Norrisha Victrum 11-points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists, 100% from the Free Throw line (4-4)