Import Sami Whitcomb dominates in Tigers win
A standout performance by import Sami Whitcomb assisted the Willetton Tigers WSBL in their round one victory.
The Tigers beat the Joondalup Wolves 86-67 in last weekends’ opening round clash at HBF Arena.
A key change to their defensive structure saw the Tiger’s take the lead after being down by 10-points at half time.
“We changed up our whole defensive strategy and ended playing zone for the last 20 minutes rather than man to man,” head coach Simon Parker said.
“We then managed to run the ball and most of our scores came from layups which is what we’re looking to do,
“It just worked and we stayed with it for the rest of the game.”
Parker says he was impressed by the performance of the senior playing group, however it was import Sami Whitcomb who stood out.
Whitcomb took home the WSBL Player of the Round Award with her dominating performance of 34 points, 14 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 steals.
“Sami Whitcomb definitely stood out, she’s going to play in the WNBA in about 4 weeks time so she’s as good as you would expect,” Parker said.
“She brings a lot of leadership, a lot of experience and a desire to win,
“She has a competitiveness and attention that she plays with which takes everything up a level.”
The Tigers will have to make the most of playing alongside Whitcomb, as she will be moving back to the USA after round four to play for Seattle Storm in the WNBA.
Parker says the younger players will benefit from learning from such an experienced leader while they have the chance.
“Whitcomb shows the younger players what they need to do to get to the next level.” Parker said.
The Tigers will be happy to have Whitcomb on side this week as they get ready to take on the Stirling Senators this Sunday.
It’s still early days in the season, so Parker says the focus leading into the game is on gaining experience as a playing group.
“We haven’t played much together as a group so we’ve just got to make sure that we are all on the same page and everyone knows what they’re doing,” Parker said.
Parker plans on experimenting with zone defence based on last weekend’s success, but says the focus is still on getting his team ready.
“We might play the zone again this week but I don’t think it’ll be as effective as it was last week, so we will start with our man to man and try shut down a few key players,” Parker said.
“It’s still very early days so we’re still trying to get what we do right and hopefully the rest will follow on from there.”
The Tigers will take on the Stirling Senators at Warwick Stadium at 12pm this Sunday. The SBL game tips off at 2pm.