Perth Lynx continued their good form into Round 8 as they headed to Dandenong Stadium to take on the Rangers. It was a Courtney Williams special, as the guard totalled 21 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists to help the Lynx blitz Dandenong and record a 74-62 point win.
Without Sara Blicavs, the Rangers struggled on the rebound count as Perth recorded 10 more in total. Steph Blicavs tried hard though, recording 17 points for the game but it wasn’t enough to counteract the strong defence from Perth. Both Alice Kunek and Sami Whitcomb made 14 points each for Perth in what was an excellent win for the club, their sixth win in a row.
The Melbourne Boomers ventured up north to take on Townsville, and the absence of their centre Liz Cambage meant this was always going to be a tough one. The Boomers put up a good effort, but the Fire came out on top 73-66. It was a Suzy Batkovic masterpiece, as the veteran finished on 17 points, 17 rebounds and 3 assists as Melbourne struggled to find an answer.
Darcee Garbin was also in exceptional form, totaling 18 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists in her 27 minutes on the court.
Jenna O’Hea was solid for the Boomers with 13 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists.
Next up was the Capitals taking on Bendigo to kick off the series of cluster matches at the State Basketball Centre. The game was extremely fast right from the word go, and it was Canberra who came out with 31 points to kick off the first quarter.
Bendigo slowly fought back, and with some brilliant execution were able to steal the lead towards the end of the match and hang on to take home a 1 point win. Betnijah Laney scored 23 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals as undoubtedly the best performance of this game. Nadeen Payne was also damaging, scoring 18 points including the 3 pointer to put the Spirit in front.
It was a standout performance from the young prospect Ezi Magbegor, who scored 20 points and 4 rebounds in this one. Nat Hurst was again the feeder to her team, totalling 7 assists with 13 points and 7 rebounds.
It was then the Lightning taking on Dandenong at the State Basketball Centre, and a good start but even better finish for Adelaide gave them a 70-49 point win. Nicole Seekamp was damaging with 15 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists, and while Abby Bishop only totalled 6 points her 12 rebounds were essential for this game. Both Natalie Novosel and Colleen Planeta scored 14 points each.
Steph Blicavs tried hard again, and was one of only two Dandenong players to hit double figures with 14 points. Kayla Pederson scored 11 points to go with her 7 rebounds.
It was another intense game when Townsville and Perth met at the State Basketball Centre. Townsville had the strength inside, but Perth managed to execute their game a touch better and finished on 84 to Townsville’s 79.
Sami Whitcomb top scored with 27 points and 6 rebounds, and Courtney Williams dominated as well with 22 points. Alice Kunek also had a big game, scoring 18 points for the Lynx, as they moved to the top of the table with a seventh consecutive win and two straight on their trip to Melbourne.
Suzy Batkovic tried hard with 14 points and 12 rebounds, and American import Lauren Mincy gave a solid effort with 16 points.
Then it was the Boomers hosting Sydney to cap off the round of matches at the State Basketball Centre, but it wasn’t the ending that Melbourne would have wanted.
Sydney’s best in Belinda Snell, Asia Taylor and Alex Wilson dominated for the Flames and Katie-Rae Ebzery held the point strongly. Snell totalled 28 points, Taylor 29 and Wilson with 24.
Sydney’s outside shooting was the difference, with an incredible 17 3-pointers, including 7 from the damaging Snell and 6 from Wilson.
Cambage had a solid game to welcome herself back to the league, scoring 22 points and 7 assists. Brittany Smart was also good for Melbourne with 18 points.