The first-placed Southern Tigers held off a spirited Norwood Flames outfit to claim a dramatic 2-point win at Campbelltown on Saturday night. It was a very even game, with both sides showcasing their offensive and defensive prowess.
The Tigers got things started early through Denelle Fawcett, and kept the pressure on throughout the first term to lead by two 23-21 at quarter time.
Mollie Mckendrick led the way for the Tigers with 26 points for the night and was ably supported by Alexandra Green and Demi Skinner with 14 points and 9 points respectively.
Denelle Fawcett and Jess Frost chipped in with 6 points each as well. Frost was particularly good at moving the ball and setting up play. She hit her targets well.
The Flames were up for the fight, however, and had Chelsea Brook, Jess Good and Shannon McKay sink 16, 15 and 14 points respectively. The Flames defence was good early, as was their transition from defence to attack. They kept right in touch with the Tigers with both teams trading baskets for much of the first term.
After quarter time the Flames eased up a bit defensively and let the Tigers get out to as much as a seven-point lead, before sinking a few late to bring the margin to a solitary point at half time. The half time score was 45-44 in favour of the Tigers.
After the half time break both teams came out ready to play. Both teams were hitting targets well, collecting rebounds and transitioning well. It was a tough, physical game with Tara Dodman fouling off late for the Tigers and Marisa Stabile and Khaleisha Barnett fouling off in the final term for the Flames. Jess Good and Chelsea Brook also picked up four personal fouls apiece.
The final quarter was pivotal for both teams, with the Tigers sinking five baskets in a row to claim a barnstorming 2-point win. That makes it five wins in a row for the in-form Tigers, who take on the Forestville Eagles at Morphett Vale on May 20. Meanwhile the fourth-placed Flames do not have to travel at all, taking on the third-placed Eastern Mavericks at Campbelltown in what looms as a season-defining game for both teams.