ROUND 3 PREVIEW
Preview a short round this weekend as the Sydney Metro Blues host the Be Active Western Stars and the Queensland Comets welcome the Red Dust Lady Heelers.
Sydney Metro Blues v Be Active Western Stars- Saturday 21st April @6pm
Sydney Metro Blues v Be Active Western Stars- Sunday 22nd April @10am
At the culmination of Round 3, we will have a much better understanding of the Championship favourites as the second-placed Blues host the first-placed Stars in back-to-back contests this weekend.
Due to the Kevin Coombs Cup beginning next Wednesday, Round 3 has a short schedule but this clash remains very important as Sydney Metro could move into first spot on the ladder with two wins while two defeats could see them fall to third if Queensland have success against Red Dust.
They have done well to get to their current position with a limited roster and they will again hit the court without Bridie Kean or Courtney Ryan which puts the pressure on Georgia Munro-Cook (who sits fourth in the league for scoring and third for rebounds), Jess Cronje and Kylie Gauci to shoulder the load.
Their defensive effort on Amber Merritt and Chihiro Kitada will be key though, after the Stars easily dealt with Sydney Metro by 46 points in Round 1.
Merritt had a triple-double of 34 points, 17 rebounds and 11 assists in that clash while Kitada added 14 points. With those two powering the Stars’ offence, they are very difficult to stop but oppositions cannot forget about Georgia Inglis either who impressed with 12 points and ten assists against the Blues.
With those weapons, the Stars will head into the weekend as favourites but the Blues cannot be counted out due to their experience and determined nature.
Queensland Comets v Red Dust Lady Heelers- Saturday 21st April @6pm
Queensland Comets v Red Dust Lady Heelers- Sunday 22nd April @10am
Three straight victories last weekend over Kilsyth moved Queensland into third spot and they will now be aiming to take advantage of another team below them on the ladder to potentially earn a top two berth by Sunday afternoon.
Crispin was the standout for the Comets across the weekend, averaging 28.3 points, 11 boards, four assists and 4.3 steals but Alison Herring impressed as well, hitting double-digits in all three games despite coming off the bench on Friday night while Ashley Wardman averaged 11 points per clash.
With Georgia Bishop-Cash and Ella Sabljak complementing those scorers, Queensland possess a depth that will be difficult for Red Dust to contain, especially with just six players expected to suit up this weekend.
However, the Lady Heelers can take confidence from their Round 1 clash when they got the better of the Comets by two points. Red Dust gave up 16 more field goal attempts but held their opponents to 31% shooting while also out-rebounding them by 12 points and a player like Taylah Perry will be crucial to the battle on the boards.
The Lady Heelers will also need similar performances from Shelley Chaplin (18 points, six rebounds, five assists in that last meeting) and Kathleen O’Kelly-Kennedy (nine points, 14 rebounds) to repeat the result from just under a month ago.