Tauranga City Coasters played hosts to both Harbour Breeze and Te Tai Tokerau Phoenix in week five of the Women’s Basketball Championship (WBC), round featuring five games.
Tauranga City, paced by 19 points from Makayla Daysh, gained their first win of the season defeating Te Tai Tokerau 70-48 on Sunday morning.
Jeannie Cameron gave Te Tai Tokerau the early lead but threes from Courtney Wilson, Cairyn-Marie Rogers and Briarley Rogers led Tauranga to a 19-13 lead.
Breeze Leonard was in good form for Te Tai Tokerau and she, alongside Leylanni Cameron‑Tana, kept the visitors in touch at the main break down 38-31.
Wilson scored 8 points in third stanza as Tauranga City edged further ahead to lead 50-39 with ten minutes to play.
A fourth quarter comeback from Te Tai Tokerau was stymied by Wilson, Kaatia Watene and the Rogers sisters who all made triples. And with Daysh dominating the paint the home team eased to a comfortable 70-48 victory.
Tauranga City Coasters 70 (Daysh 19p/8r, C Rogers 15, Wilson 14, B Rogers 9)
Te Tai Tokerau Phoenix 48 (Leonard 16, Cameron-Tana 13, J Cameron 8p/9r, H Harding 7)
Tauranga City fronted for its second game of the day against Harbour Breeze with its chances severely dented due to the unavailability of Makayla Daysh.
The power forward’s absence allowed Tall Fern Deena Franklin (27pts - 11 from 13 from the field) and Tania Uluheua (17pts/9rebs) to dominate inside.
That domination was evident in the first quarter as Harbour took a 23-10 lead on the back of 12 points from Franklin.
Tauranga City responded in an even second period, Te Hiria Bennett landing a late three to reduce the Harbour advantage to 40-25 at half-time.
A pair of Georgia Agnew’s baskets initiated a 12-2 Harbour run and the lead climbed to over thirty points as Tiarna Clarke and Uluheua made baskets.
To their credit Tauranga City kept persevering as Hemoata Hill and Ngataierua Bennett each landed threes in the fourth quarter before Uluheua capped a fine performance with 10 straight points to conclude a comfortable Harbour win.
Harbour Breeze 88 (Franklin 27, Uluheua 17, Clarke 16, K Tini 9)
Tauranga City Coasters 51 (C Rogers 13, B Rogers 11, Wilson 6, N Bennett 6)
On Saturday Harbour proved too strong for Te Tai Tokerau winning 77-25 in a game also hosted by Tauranga.
Harbour sailed out to an 18-6 first quarter lead extended to 35-15 at half-time.
Anna Lacey made the first five points of the game and the lead was into double figures before Te Arani Daniels made a triple for Te Tai Tokerau.
Junior Tall Fern guard Tiarna Clarke, heading for the University of Northern Colorado later this week, landed a couple of trademark jumpers as Harbour moved to a 52-24 advantage at the end of the third.
Harbour have recently welcomed back Georgia Perrott-Hunt, Katie Diakhaby and Coola Baudry from freshman stints at USA junior colleges and all three made contributions as Harbour eased to a convincing win.
Te Tai Tokerau was well served by Daniels and Reanon Hetaraka-Sadler.
Harbour Breeze (Agnew 12, Perrott-Hunt 11, Clarke 9, Diakhaby 8, Uluheua 8)
Te Tai Tokerau 25 (T Daniels 7, Heteraka-Sadler 7, C Daniels 4)
Also on Saturday Charlisse Leger-Walker, named a few days ago in the Tall Ferns Selection squad, led all scorers with 23 points as Waikato Wizards defeated Taranaki Thunder 62-57 in New Plymouth.
Waikato showed no signs of travel fatigue scoring the first 6 points of the game before Jess Tuki, Vanessa McCarthy and Caitlin Preston steadied the ship for Taranaki.
Waikato then embarked on a 13-0 run to close the first quarter with a 23-6 advantage as Kelcy Ballantyne and Koha Lewis took toll of some suspect Taranaki defence.
The second quarter was much tighter, 13-12 in favour of the hosts Taranaki. Zhanay Hettig scored a couple of baskets for Waikato with a triple from Taranaki guard Simone Cook closing the half – Waikato ahead 35-19.
Taranaki started with more intensity in the third period with Isabelle Cook and Preston sharing 11 points to close within ten points, 31-41, at the 5:50 mark. Simone Cooke landed another three to dent the lead further forcing Waikato to call a timeout.
Leger-Walker responded scoring the final 10 points of the period for her team as Waikato held a 52-43 lead at the end of the period.
Taranaki reduced the margin to five points with under two minutes remaining but could not apply the killer touch as Waikato held on for a sixth straight win and leap frog Taranaki into third spot on the WBC ladder.
Taranaki Thuner 57 (I Cook 17, S Cook 9, McCarthy 9, Tuki 8/9r, Preston 8)
Waikato Wizards 62 (Leger-Walker 23, Hettig 10, Hirawani 10, Lewis 5)
In the third game played on Saturday, Donna Fermanis scored 19 points to help propel Waikato Country Cannons to an 88-74 victory against Capital Swish.
Played in Wellington Waikato Country shot out to a 29-18 first quarter lead as Fermanis, Tenielle Wilkinson-August and Freda Riwai consistently found ways to the hoop.
Capital had much the better of frame two as Renee Savai’inaea, Leah Mafua and Sariah Penese turned the tables on Waikato Country. Lily Murphy put Capital ahead for the first time and they led 40-39 at the break.
Waikato Country opened the second half with a 12-0 run as Breana Jones and Mieke Elkington made threes before Mafua stopped the rot for Capital.
A triple from Chelseah Savage in the shadows of three-quarter time maintained a double figure advantage for Waikato Country, 68-58 at the conclusion of the third.
Consecutive baskets from Penese and a pair of freebies from Tanaka Gapare at the mid point of the fourth reduced the arrears to five points, 73-68. However that was as close as it got as Elkington made her third triple of the night. Along with Jones the pair scored 11 straight points to close out a hard fought 88-74 win.
The seventh straight win moves Waikato Country to a 7-1 record on the WBC ladder.
Capital Swish 74 (Penese 22, Mafua 16, Gapare 9p/8r)
Waikato Country Cannons 88 (Fermanis 19p/9r, Jones 18, Elkington 15, Riwai 8)
7-1 Alloyfold Canterbury Wildcats
7-1 Waikato Country Cannons
6-1 Waikato Wizards
5-2 Taranaki Thunder
4-2 Site Weld Otago Goldrush
4-3 Capital Swish
3-4 Harbour Breeze
2-5 Auckland Lady Rangers
1-6 Rotorua Lady Vols
1-7 Tauranga City Coasters
0-8 Te Tai Tokerau Phoenix
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