SEASON REVIEW: QUEENSLAND COMETS
Wins - 5
Losses – 10
Standing – 4th
2016 result – 3 wins, 12 losses
Improving on last year’s overall results by two wins, the Comets returned to the playoffs after missing out in 2016. They pushed the Stars all the way in the Semi-Final and then fell by just a point in the bronze medal game, proving they certainly belonged in the top four. After averaging just 23.3 points through their first three games, they bumped that point production up to 44.1 by season’s end thanks in large part to the arrival of Mari Amimoto while Alison Mosely, Mel Hall and Ashley Wardman all averaged over eight points per contest and worked by committee on the boards. Ella Sabljak and Georgia Bishop-Cash provided stability to the team with their experience proving critical to keeping the Comets on an even keel as they held off Red Dust for the fourth and final playoff spot.
Queensland’s defence eventually proved their downfall as they gave up the second most amount of points through the season at 56.9 per game. Six times teams scored over 70 points against them and they were unable to reach that mark once in 2017. Amimoto’s absence in five games hurt the Comets’ chances to improve on their five wins while Shelley Chaplin (who averaged 10.3 points and 9.3 assists) was only available for four matches.
Japanese import Amimoto competed against the Gliders during a couple of international friendly tournaments earlier this year but Australian fans loved watching her during her Comets campaign this season. The best long-range shooter in the competition, Amimoto hit 12 three-pointers to lead her to 24.3 points per game (second in the league). She also finished fourth for rebounds (11.5) and fourth for assists (5.7) while her shooting stroke translated to the charity stripe as well where she led the competition for free-throw percentage.
It will be interesting to see if Amimoto returns for a third year in the WNWBL but if she does, the Comets potentially need just one other offensive star to power them to a podium place in 2018. Players like Hall and Alison Herring are coming into their own and could prove to be very valuable players next year while they will be aiming to retain their more experienced players to lead them.