Collie U18 Women’s basketball team competed in Country Championships this weekend, coming home as winners of Division 3.
Their first game wasn’t until 1:20 in the afternoon on Saturday so the girls made sure they were hydrated and ready to take on Harvey in the stifling heat of Bendat Basketball stadium.
The starting 5 took the court and it wasn’t long before Chloe scored the first 2 points of the game. Collie’s tight defence held Harvey to only 6 points by half time.
A strong offensive second half saw Collie win their first game 26 – 13, with Abbey notably scoring 12 points for her team.
Game 2 was against Dongara, once again in the heat and once again, Chloe opened up the scoring.
The game quickly became a tough, physical contest with a number of fouls from both teams as they continued to sink baskets, keeping the scores close but 2 pts from Kate put us up 16-15 at the half time break.
Early in the second half, a goal from Temilee extended our lead by 2 pt, but Dongara responded with 2 quick goals to put them up by 1.
Morgan drew a foul, went to the line and was able to level the score, then 2 free throws from Tem took us to the lead by 2.
Belle´ copped an elbow to the nose and spent the rest of the half in the First Aid room while her team mates kept the defensive pressure on and finished off the game with a convincing win 22-31.
Our 3rd game of the day was thankfully played in the air-conditioned court, giving the plyers some relief from the heat.
Coach Maus knew this would be a tough game and the girls went out onto the court prepared for some hard competition.
When 2 quick goals from Narrogin put them up 4-0, Collie knew they would have to work hard. Kate drew a foul and went to the line, sinking 1 basket, putting us on the board. 2 points from Abbey, another 2 from Kate working hard in offence gave us a 1 pt lead.
Belle´ took the court, showing it takes a lot more than a nose bleed to stop her, scoring 2 points to even the scores at half time.
After a rev up from Coach Maus at the break, she sent the girls back out with determination to break through Narrogin’s strong defence and make some quick drives to the basket.
After another tough, physical half Narrogin managed to break through our defence and took the game by 2 points. Final score 20 – 22.
After a quiet reflection session with Coach Maus, the girls were determined to come back from defeat and aim to increase their percentage as much as possible.
They took the court against Eaton with renewed intensity and the strong offensive mix of Chloe, Imogen, Abbey, Morgan and Temilee soon had us up 8 – 0.
Strong defence and quick transitions helped the girls increase their lead and by half time they were up 29-8.
The players went out after the break aiming to increase the lead in the second half and continued to put on defensive pressure, but Eaton came out firing on all cylinders, broke through our defence and started to rack up the points.
Collie girls didn’t let this rattle them and Abbey, Chloe and Kate continued to drive through and score enough to maintain a healthy lead for the remainder of the game. Collie were able to finish the long, hot day with a convincing win of 23 – 45.
After a late night, the players were thankful for the air-conditioned court knowing that a big effort was required to win if they wanted to finish on top of the ladder.
The after effects of previous day were evident in both teams as they soon started to rack up fouls. Kate went to the line and scored 3 beautiful free throws taking us to a 7-0 lead.
Both teams were fighting hard to take the ball to the basket, but fouls were constantly being called and they struggled to gain momentum.
By half time, Collie held a 6-12 lead with 8 points being scored from free throws.
The second half was much of the same type of play, with Collie managing to score a few more field goals to increase their lead and finish the game victorious by 5 points.
After a long wait for the results to come through, Collie finished top of the ladder and went straight through to the grand final.
The Grand Final was against Narrogin, the only team to defeat us all weekend, and there was no way Collie was going to let them win again!
Having just watched the U16 boys win their grand final, the girls were super pumped to take the court and it showed right from the tip off.
Chloe once again scored the first 2 points, boosting the girls into strong defence.
They played great transition, switching from zone to man on man to box on one showing Narrogin that Collie were serious.
Belle´ and Jade were both playing great defence on Narrogin’s top point scorer to keep her out of the game.
Strong rebounding by Kate, and Morgan’s great ball control helped bring the ball back down the court.
Imogen’s timely points helped Collie strengthen their lead, while Temilee’s defence made it almost impossible for Narrogin to break through, until an elbow to the nose sent her to the First Aid room.
By half time, scores were low, but Collie held the lead 8 to 4.
The second half saw Collie’s defence hold Narrogin to only scoring 5 points and kept them scoreless for the last 14 minutes of the game.
Abbey put the pressure on the Narrogin defence, driving to the basket and drawing fouls, adding crucial points to our score and solidifying our lead. On the final siren the score was 18 – 9.
Congratulations to Temilee Mumme and Abbey Barber who were both recognised for their contribution to the game and were awarded MVP medals at the presentation ceremony.