This round featured a lot of close games but not too many surprises. A few shifts around the rankings occurred while everything else stayed pretty much the same. Overall, it was a nice week for Australian women's hoops with young stars continuing to shine.
Note: Last week's rankings are in parentheses.
1. Melbourne Boomers (1)
The Boomers took on the Townsville Fire in a sold-out crowd. They fought tooth and nail to come out with a victory and they did just that, defeating the Fire 86-76 on their home turf.
Tiffany Mitchell returned and didn't seem to skip a beat. She finished with 22 points and was joined in double-digit scoring by Cayla George (16 points, eight rebounds, five assists, and a steal), Kristy Wallace (18 points, seven assists, and a steal), and Olivia Nelson-Ododa (11 points and seven rebounds).
2. Bendigo Spirit (4)
The Spirit's place at 4th on the rankings was short-lived and for good reason. Their loss against Southside last week served as a type of heat check which allowed them to regroup for their 78-66 win over the Adelaide Lightning.
Anneli Maley was dominant per usual. Her stat line is shown in the tweet above but typing out her 24 rebounds is an absolute must. Aside from the three mentioned in the tweet, there are a few players that I'd be remiss not to include.
Alicia Froling recorded 11 points, nine rebounds, and two blocks while Megan McKay also contributed 11 points.
3. Southside Flyers (2)
The Flyers faced the struggling Capitals team at home and came out with a nice 76-54 victory. By some standards, this game was relatively close due to how good of a team Southside is and what people expect them to do against inferior teams.
As seen in the tweet above Sara Blicavs was everywhere on the court with her stat line while Maddi Rocci showed out and produced a double-double. Kayla Thornton contributed well in the win with 13 points, six rebounds, and four assist game.
4. Townsville Fire (3)
In a sold-out crowd at home, it seemed like the Fire were going to pull off the upset against the Boomers. They lead Melbourne all the way through the third quarter until the Boomers asserted their strength and dominance.
Mikaela Ruef was the start of the show, recording a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Stephanie Reid scored 21 points while Lauren Nicholson ended with 14.
5. Perth Lynx (5)
The Lynx played a tight game against the Adelaide Lightning that resulted in an 82-72 home win. They relied on their inside and midrange shooting more when their perimeter shooting was non-existent.
Lauren Scherf anchored the Lynx rebounding and defensive game recording a double-double of 11 points, 14 rebounds, eight assists, three steals, and four blocks. Amy Atwell joined in on the fun with 14 points and eight rebounds. The scoring machine known as Chloe Bibby rocked the Lightning's world, exploding for 25 points and nine rebounds.
6. Adelaide Lightning (6)
This round marked the start of something new after Kierstan Bell left the team to return to the United States to prepare for this upcoming WNBA season. They suffered two losses, a 66-78 one against Bendigo and a 72-82 one against Perth.
Steph Talbot continues to dominate opponents on all ends. She finished with a double-double of 21 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, two steals, and two blocks against Bendigo and another double-double of 12 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists, two steals, and two blocks. Jacinta Monroe joined in on the double-double party against Perth with 23 points, 10 rebounds, two steals, and a block.
7. Sydney Flames (7)
Sydney's young stars keep looking better and better as the season progresses. Sure their wins only came against the Canberra Capitals, including this round's 81-70 win.
Shyla Heal continues to show she's the future of Australian point guards boasting a stat line of 26 points, six rebounds, seven assists, and a steal. Jocelyn Willoughby contributed with 12 points, five assists, and two steals. Keely Frolling's veteran presence continues to show on the court with her double-double of 21 points, 13 rebounds, and two blocks.
8. Canberra Capitals (8)
I'm running out of words to describe the mess that are the Canberra Capitals. Again, they have young talent which deserves recognition. But their 54-76 loss against Southside and 70-81 loss to Sydney sticks out more than the play of their young talent.
Jade Melbourne played a decent game against the Flyers, recording 10 points. Nicole Munger shined in both games, recording 15 points, five rebounds, three assists, and two steals against Southside and 13 points, five rebounds, and two steals against Sydney.
Rae Burrell wasn't the most consistent this round due to scoring two against Southside but played really well against Sydney with 15 points. The shining star of the Capitals this round was none other than Shanice Swain. Swain torched both teams' defences with 22 points and four steals against Southside and 21 points and five rebounds against Sydney.
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