WBC Div 2 Round 6 Preview

WBC Div 2 Round 6 Preview

A festival of women’s basketball takes place this weekend as four Women’s Basketball Championship (WBC) Division 2 teams converge on Queen Margaret College, Wellington.

Capital Swish, Wellington, South Canterbury Stealers and McAlpines M10 MEGA North Canterbury Spirit will play three games apiece in a round robin series over Saturday and Sunday.

Much interest will focus on the game between Wellington and Spirit as both teams enter the weekend with a perfect 3-0 record – that game wraps up proceedings on Saturday.

Sunday has been dubbed ‘Derby Day’ as the two Canterbury teams will clash at 10.00am followed by a match up to decide bragging rights in the capital between Wellington and the Swish at midday.

Division Two Round 6 Schedule

All games played at Queen Margaret College, Wellington

Saturday June 15 – South Canterbury Stealers v Capital Swish at 9am

South Canterbury Stealers head coach Sean Fuller will be hoping his team can kick start their season with a first win of the campaign in the opening game on Saturday. Stealers captain Annabelle Quinonez leads the league in assists with 5.3 dimes per game and her play making ability will be important to the Cantabrians chances.

Predicted Starters

  • Swish – Letava Whippy, Arielle Parai, Dalen Pilitati, Maia Jean Watene, Laura Talbot
  • Stealers – Dallas Frederikson, Annabelle Quinonez, Jorja Miller, Milly Ford, Abbie Hennelly

Key Numbers

  • Swish guard Letava Whippy leads the league in scoring (29.3ppg) and steals (4.3spg). She needs just 12 points to tally 100 points for the season.
  • The Stealers also have a league leader. Dallas Frederikson has converted 6 from 13 three-point attempts at a competition high 46%.

Saturday June 15 – McAlpines M10 MEGA North Canterbury Spirit v Wellington at 11am

Wellington welcome back Sariah Penese for the clash with the Spirit, the two unbeaten WBC Division 2 teams. Penese has recently returned from her NCAA Division 1 freshman year at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She featured in 22 games and started in 6, for the Retrievers. 

Opposing her will be a trio of NCAA Division 1 athletes in the Spirit line-up. Esra McGoldrick (North Carolina State), Charlotte Whittaker (University of Colorado) and Amy West (Liberty University) will be keen to preserve the Spirit’s unbeaten record.

Predicted Starters

  • Spirit – Kendal Hastie, Esra McGoldrick, Kat Jones, Caoimhe Colgan, Amy West
  • Wellington – Sariah Penese, Leah Mafua, Grace Vaofusi, Emilina Motu, Renee Savaiinaea

Key Numbers

  • Spirit forward Esra McGoldrick is second in the league in both points (24.0ppg) and rebounds (11.3rpg).
  • Captain Leah Mafua is leading from the front for Wellington. She leads the team in points (15.0ppg), assists (4.3apg) and is second in rebounds (6.0rpg)

Saturday June 15 – McAlpines M10 MEGA North Canterbury Spirit v Capital Swish at 4pm

The two leading scorers will oppose one another in this clash. Letava Whippy is averaging almost 30 points a game for Capital and Esra McGoldrick 24 points for the Spirit.

The Spirit may have the edge in the front court where McGoldrick and Charlotte Whittaker, will reunite – the teenage pair recently named to the Tall Ferns squad for the tour of Japan and Taiwan.

Predicted Starters

  • Spirit – Kendal Hastie, Esra McGoldrick, Kat Jones, Caoimhe Colgan, Amy West
  • Swish - Letava Whippy, Arielle Parai, Dalen Pilitati, Maia Jean Watene, Laura Talbot

Key Numbers

The battle on the boards should be a good one with the competitions three leading rebounders on show. Capital’s Arielle Parai (11.3rpg) and Letava Whippy (11.0rpg) will oppose Esra McGoldrick 11.3rpg)

Saturday June 15 – South Canterbury Stealers v Wellington at 6pm

Tall Ferns 3X3 representative Tanaka Gapare will lineup for Wellington in this one after missing the morning fixture against the Spirit. Gapare made her senior international debut at the FIBA 3X3 Asia Cup in China last month. Wellington’s leading rebounder, averaging 9.7 boards per game, will give her team added presence in the paint.

Tussling for supremacy on the boards will be Stealers leading rebounders Abbey Lang and Jorja Miller.

Predicted Starters

  • Stealers – Dallas Frederikson, Annabelle Quinonez, Jorja Miller, Milly Ford, Abbie Hennelly
  • Wellington – Sariah Penese, Leah Mafua, Grace Vaofusi, Emilina Motu, Tanaka Gapare

Key Numbers

  • Stealers captain Annabelle Quinonez leads the league in assists with 5.3 dimes per game.
  • Wellington forward Tanaka Gapare leads the league in percentage free-throws made, averaging 90% (16/18).

Sunday June 16 – McAlpines M10 MEGA North Canterbury Spirit v South Canterbury Stealers at 10am

Dallas Frederikson and Jorja Miller appear to be key players if the Stealers are to spring a surprise and defeat their North Canterbury neighbours. The pair average 26 points a game between them and will be looking for a similar output on Sunday. Kendal Hastie, Caoimhe Colgan and the other Spirit guards will be alive to the danger those two present in what should be a hotly contested game.

Predicted Starters

  • Spirit – Kendal Hastie, Esra McGoldrick, Kat Jones, Caoimhe Colgan, Amy West
  • Stealers – Dallas Frederikson, Annabelle Quinonez, Jorja Miller, Milly Ford, Abbie Hennelly

Key Numbers

  • Jorja Miller is second in scoring and rebounding for the Stealers averaging 9.7 points per game and 7.0 rebounds.
  • Also averaging 9.7 points per game is experienced Spirit playmaker Jody Hikuroa-Jeffrey.

Sunday June 16 – Capital Swish v Wellington at midday

Leah Mafua is due to leave for her NCAA Division 1 basketball scholarship at Washington State University, Coach Kenny McFadden’s former school, in a few weeks but first up is a local derby dual with Wellington.

Also for Wellington Terrelle Onesemo makes a welcome comeback after suffering an ACL injury early in 2018. Onesemo played a key role in the St Mary's College 2017 Secondary Schools Championship winning team playing alongside Sariah Penese, Grace Hunter and Renee Savai’inaea.

Expect that quartet to be prominent in a game that could well go a long way towards deciding Division 2 top four placings.

Predicted Starters

  • Swish - Letava Whippy, Arielle Parai, Dalen Pilitati, Maia Jean Watene, Laura Talbot
  • Wellington – Sariah Penese, Leah Mafua, Grace Vaofusi, Emilina Motu, Tanaka Gapare

Key Numbers

  • Capital’s Dalen Pilitati is averaging 9 points per game leading into the weekend.
  • 15 year-old Wellington guard Jyordanna Davey, MVP at the 2018 U15 Nationals last year, has made a good start to her WBC career averaging 8.7 points per game.

Article Mike Lacey

WBC Division 2 Standings

  • 3-0 Wellington, North Canterbury Spirit
  • 3-2 Harbour Zephyr
  • 2-1 Capital Swish
  • 2-4 Rotorua Lady Geysers
  • 1-4 Northland Phoenix
  • 0-3 South Canterbury Stealers

Livestats

Available for all game click here.

Season Stats

Available for games click here.

More Info

Div 1 Livestream

Watch selected 2019 Women’s Basketball Championship games through livestream on BBNZ’s Facebook @basketballNZ hashtag #NZWBC or website www.nz.basketball/tv.  Round 6 livestream games:

  • Friday June 14 – Harbour Breeze v Auckland Dream, 7pm at AUT Fitness & Sports Centre
  • Saturday June 15 – Waikato Wizards v Alloyfold Canterbury Wildcats, 1pm at St Peter’s School, Cambridge
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