Harbour Breeze meet Waikato Wizards in WBC Final

Waikato Wizards forward Miriam Stevens knocked down a couple of free throws to draw first blood in the first WBC Championship semi-final against Auckland Counties Manukau Lady Hawks.

 The Wizards held a slender 19- 15 lead at the end of the first quarter.

 The Wizards cause was aided when Hawks forward Kalani Purcell headed to the bench after picking up a third foul early in the second period. A nice balanced scoring effort from the Wizards gave them a 43-34 half-time advantage, Jordan Hunter’s three late triples keeping ACM in touch.

 ACM fell behind by as many as 16 points in the third quarter but gifted free throws courtesy of some Waikato defensive ill-discipline the deficit was just 56-44 with ten minutes remaining.

 

Waikato Wizards forward Miriam Stevens knocked down a couple of free throws to draw first blood in the first WBC Championship semi-final against Auckland Counties Manukau Lady Hawks.The Wizards held a slender 19- 15 lead at the end of the first quarter.

The Wizards cause was aided when Hawks forward Kalani Purcell headed to the bench after picking up a third foul early in the second period. A nice balanced scoring effort from the Wizards gave them a 43-34 half-time advantage, Jordan Hunter’s three late triples keeping ACM in touch.

ACM fell behind by as many as 16 points in the third quarter but gifted free throws courtesy of some Waikato defensive ill-discipline the deficit was just 56-44 with ten minutes remaining.

A tiring Waikato team retained their advantage in the final period but when Hawks point guard Jordan Hunter sunk a couple of free throws the lead to the Wizards was just six points, with 1:40 left on the clock. The Hawks charge gathered momentum as the Wizards committed a couple of turnovers and Kalani Purcell scored four quick points.The outstanding Krystal Leger-Walker drained a three with 0:58 remaining and then calmly slotted home three from four free throws to help the Wizards to a deserved 72-61 victory.

Leger-Walker and Jess Tuki scored 16 apiece for the Wizards, Charmian Mellars and Natalie Taylor 18 each for ACM Lady Hawks.

In the second semi-final North Harbour Breeze led at the first quarter buzzer 21-16 against Waitakere Lady Rangers. The Rangers opened the second quarter with a 6-0 run, Harbour guard Brooke Blair igniting a 9-0 run in response, Breeze ahead 33-25 at half-time. Tera Reed (11pts) led the Harbour scoring at the main break, Wuanyei Ah-Hing (10pts) to the fore for the Rangers.

The Rangers started the third period strongly, Stevee Theyers and Keziah Kelly reducing the Harbour lead to 41-36 but a strong nine point finish courtesy of the Blair sisters and Anna Lacey produced a 52-37 advantage with ten minutes remaining.

The Lady Rangers ran out of steam in the final period, Harbour Breeze able to utilize a full bench of 12 players and ease to a comfortable 74-47 victory. Tera Reed (13pts) and Jaycin Tini (11pts) led the Breeze effort, Stevee Theyers scored a dozen for the Rangers.

The Breeze meet the Waikato Wizards in Saturday’s final not a match up many would have predicted when the tournament commenced on Thursday.

The Plate Final will be between New Zealand Home Loans Canterbury Wildcats and Capital Flyers.

 

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