Hawaii Wahine vs Sth Island invitational wrap-up

The touring University of Hawaii Rainbow Wahine women’s basketball team was made to work extra hard before beating a NZ Premiere South team, made up of players from Canterbury, North Canterbury and Otago, holding off a strong second half challenge from the South to win the entertaining encounter 54-49 in Cowles Stadium last evening. The visitors settled quickly, opening up a 18-8 first quarter lead before the southern team started to gell together.

By half-time the NZ Premiere team had reduced the lead to 27-19 and later in the fourth with Tesa Boagni (10), Helen Mathews (10) and Charlotte Whittaker with 9 points all contributing to a strong comeback.

Hawaii made good use of turnover ball, scoring 27 to Souths 6. With such a large bench of 14 players they capitalized scoring 24 off the bench to Souths 14. The biggest lead was 14 points at 34-20.

Three otago players in the South side had plenty of work to do with Soraya Umaga-Jensen, Danielle Frost and Natalie Smith making good use of their court time.

Charlotte Whittaker had a nervous first half but stepped up to claim loose ball and rebounded stronger in the second half. As the South team were desperate to close the gap in the fourth quarter former Tallfen Shea Crotty produced two mighty steels while NZ Junior Helen Mathews (Kaiapoi High) penetrated the Hawaii defence at every opportunity. Canterbury Wildcat, Connie Poletti, fresh from the U23 nationals, struggled to find gaps in the Hawaii defence, scoring just one basket but never gave up trying.

Result and scorers were :

University of Hawaii Rainbow Wahine 54 (Makenna Woodfolk 9, 10R) NZ Premiere South 49 (Tessa Boagni 10, 9R, Helen Mathews 10, Charlotte Whittaker 9, 9R). HT: 27-19.



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