Auckland Dream laid down a marker on the opening day of the 2019 Women’s Basketball Championship (WBC), at Cowles Stadium, Christchurch on Friday crushing defending champions Otago Gold Rush 62-25.
After the two teams split 24 points in the opening quarter remarkably Otago were held to zero points in the second quarter and only added 13 in the whole of the second half.
In another quirky statistic Auckland had 11 scorers but no player in double figures – Casyn Buchman led their scorers with 9.
Earlier Harbour Breeze, led by a 26 points haul from forward Ash Kelman-Poto, proved too strong for Waikato Wizards winning 73-46. Westlake Girls teenager Emme Shearer and Tall Fern Deena Franklin scored 11 apiece whilst another Tall Fern Krystal Leger-Walker top scored for the Wizards with 8.
The livestreamed game was largely one-way traffic with hosts Alloyfold Canterbury Wildcats crushing Taranaki Thunder 91-24. Russian forward Maria Davydova completed a double double (11 points/11 rebounds) in just 17 minutes of action whilst NZ age-group internationals Helen Mathews (19pts) and Rosalia Samia (13pts) led the Wildcats scoring. Rochelle Fourie was the best for Taranaki with 8 points.
Basketball fans were unfortunately robbed of seeing three of New Zealand’s best young Tall Ferns in action as Tessa Boagni (Canterbury), Penina Davidson (Harbour) and Charlisse Leger-Walker (Waikato) are all sidelined with ankle injuries.
In Division 2 action there were wins on day one for Harbour Zephyr, Northland Phoenix and Wellington.
Round 1 results:
Waikato Wizards 46 – Krystal Leger-Walker 8 Miriam Stevens 7, Koha Lewis 6
Harbour Breeze 73 – Ashleigh Kelman-Poto 26, Deena Franklin 11, Emme Shearer 11, Yume Negishi 8
Auckland Dream 62 – Casyn Buchman 9, Charmian Mellars 8, Natalie Taylor 8, Kalani Purcell 7
AM I FIT Otago Gold Rush 25 – Natalie Visger 6, Natalie smith 5, Nicole Ruske 5
Alloyfold Canterbury Wildcats 91 – Helen Mathews 19, Rosalia Samia 13, Sapphire Warau 12, Maria Davydova 11/11r
Taranaki Thunder 24 – Rochelle Fourie 8, Teesha Smith 5
Wellington 70 – Tanaka Gapare 18/18r, Leah Mafua 15, Emilena Motu 10, Jyordanna Davey 10
Rotorua Lady Geysers 45 – Aroha Haumaha 20, Awatea Leach 7
South Canterbury Stealers 50 – Dallas Frederikson 22, Jorja Miller 8, Jessica Davidson 8
Northland Phoenix 61 – Jaimee-Lee Tito 13, Leylanni Cameron-Tana 12, Lelani Tautiepa 10
Capital Swish 64 – Letava Whippy 27, Arielle Parai 12, Dalen Pilitati 9
Harbour Zephyr 71 – Tiarna Clarke 15, Wuanyei Ah Hing 13, Jess Moors 12, Raykesha Fiatau 12