Tag: kate gaze

2021 Big V Women’s preview: Round 5

BULLEEN Boomers are the only side that remain undefeated heading into Round 5 of the Big V Women’s with Keilor Thunder suffering their first loss of the season last round and looking to bounce back this weekend. Meanwhile up the other end of the ladder, Whittlesea Pacers are on the lookout for their inaugural win in 2021.

Keilor vs. Southern Peninsula
Saturday, April 17 @6:00pm

Dropping their first game of the season last week by 19 points expect Keilor Thunder to be on the prowl for their next win and to solidify their standings in the top four with a strong performance here. On the flip side, Southern Peninsula have shown glimpses of dominance and will be hoping to find a level of consistency in their performance against Keilor.

Bianca Babic has been a key cog for the Thunder in season 2021 with her tenacity and willingness to drive to the basket a couple of fundamentals in the way she approaches the game. Babic alongside the likes of Emily Suckling, Ally Keating and Ellen Kett will have to be on their a-game if they are to bounce back from last week’s loss and pile on the pressure against Southern Peninsula. When it comes to the Sharks, Tanarly Hood is the main playmaker, able to get her hands to plenty of ball and most importantly score while Ashleigh Wright is the other one to keep an eye out for. Fiona Darnell has proven to be dominant off the boards and will need to be on full alert in this clash while Jayde Popovski will be hoping to recapture her hot form.

Hume vs. McKinnon
Saturday, April 17 @8:00pm

Both sides will be looking to creep their way up the ladder with McKinnon on the hunt for their third win of the season and Hume hoping to notch up their second. Coming into the Round 5 clash both sides will be riding high with McKinnon securing a 37-point win while Hume notched up an impressive 45-point victory.  With this in mind expect both teams to come out firing and to play with great flair and tenacity across the court as they look to replicate their attacking ways.

When looking at McKinnon there are a number of players that are capable of stepping up to the plate with Amelia Todhunter and Rosie Fadljevic capable of leading the way. The duo combined for 42 points last week and will be eager to replicate that type of performance against the lowly Hume Broncos. Other players to keep a key on throughout the clash are Katie Blazer and Isobel Anstey given their ability to bob up and hit the scoreboard. Hume have struggled to generate a wealth of scoring opportunities but when they do it is Leilani Siamoa that leads the way producing a team-high 11 points last round. Tashia Overby and Hailey Wynd will need to up their output if they are to worry McKinnon while Ellen Wright is a strong option off the boards and will have to bring that intensity on Saturday night.

Casey vs. Whittlesea
Saturday, April 17 @8:00pm

Casey will be searching for their fourth win of the season while Whittlesea will be aiming to secure their first for the year. It will be an uphill battle for the Pacers given the dominance of Casey who have proven they have the calibre to mix it with the best, currently holding onto second spot on the ladder.

There is no denying that Shereesha Richards is the main port of call for Casey with her explosive nature and all-round star power often earning her the limelight and for good reason. Coming off a 29 point and 12 rebound haul the Pacers will have their work cut out for them when it comes to finding ways to shut her down. Rachel Bunn is another player that poses a threat while Tegan Fowler and Rebekka Mawdsley are no slouches on the points scoring front. All eyes will turn to Indiana Bodley when she steps out on court for Whittlesea registering an impressive 21 points last round but at a lowly 35 per cent. If she can up the ante it will go a long way in troubling the second placed Casey. She will need support from the likes of Saule Kontautaite and Lyndsey Hoogenhout who have proven to be viable scoring options when given the time and space but just need to ensure they can have a sustained impact.

Sunbury vs. Bulleen
Saturday, April 17 @8:00pm

The final game of the round will see a huge clash between top four sides Sunbury and Bulleen with the latter looking to keep their unbeaten record intact. It is going to be a tantalising matchup as both teams are coming in hot with their ability to attack the rim a key feature in both their game plays.

The Jets will be hoping that Orla O’Reilly and Courtenay Wragg can combine once again to put some fear into the opposition and keep the scoreboard ticking over. Notching up 29 points collectively last round they proved to be real handy across the court while Tahnee Cannan is no slouch given her scoring prowess. Emily Conn is known for her ability to get busy while Bianca Dfelmeier is influential both on the scoreboard and off the boards. But anything that Sunbury can do, the Boomers can do bigger and better boasting a multi-pronged attack filled with WNBL talent. It is hard to ignore the likes of Kate Gaze and  Louella Tomlinson who are simply unstoppable once given a taste. Gaze put up a staggering 47 points in a showing of just how explosive she is while Tomlinson recorded a triple double. But if those two are kept quiet there are a wealth of other options that are capable of taking the reins with Annie Garrick and Kate Sturzaker able to chime in with some handy points and defensive plays to halt opposition teams in their tracks.

2021 Big V Women’s wrap: Round 4

BULLEEN managed to keep its winning streak alive notching up a fourth straight victory in Round 4 of the Big V Women’s competition. The top four battle between Casey and Keilor lived up to the hype with the two plying their trade.

Southern Peninsula (40) defeated by McKinnon (77)

McKinnon dominated in their clash against Southern Peninsula to secure their second win of the season and leapfrog their opponents on the ladder to hold onto fifth spot. McKinnon dictated the terms of the game early creating a handy eight point lead and while Southern Peninsula hit back in the second that was shortly lived, Southern Peninsula were well and truly smothered in the second half only able to register a mere 11 points while McKinnon stacked on 43 points of their own in a white wash.

Tanarly Hood continued her strong start to the season for Southern Peninsula producing a team-high 13 points. She could have had more had she been more accurate from the field only converting at 33 per cent. Ashleigh Wright was a workhorse for her 11 points, four rebounds and four steals as Abbey McNamara also added five points to the scoreboard but it did little to worry McKinnon. The victors looked to both Rosie Fadljevic and Amelia Todhunter to lead the way and put up a competitive total. Fadljevic was the main source of pain knocking back 23 points and 10 rebounds in the win while Todhunter registered 19 and eight steals. Isobel Anstey also made an impact through her 11 points in an impressive shooting display to convert at 100 per cent from the field. Claire Ioannidis also plied her trade to walk away with nine points and three rebounds.

Casey (87) defeated Keilor (68)

Casey got the job done against Keilor Thunder to earn third spot on the ladder and push their opponents down the ladder. It was a strong showing from the opening term for Casey as they peppered away at the basket to create a handy 11-point ball game to commence the first break. This momentum trickled into the second quarter before establishing a 20-point lead at half time alone. Keilor managed to cut into the deficit marginally in the third term but that was short-lived as Casey claimed bragging rights in the final stanza of play and ultimately the game itself to run out 19-point victors.

Shereesha Richards was at her damaging best once again for the winners producing a scintillating 29 points at 77 per cent while also securing 12 rebounds in an all-round impressive performance. Rachel Bell did a lot of the heavy lifting for Casey thanks to her 26 points, five rebounds and six assists. Tegan Fowler was the sole other player able to make it to double-digits thanks to her 10 points to accompany her eight rebounds and three assists. Bianca Babic was the main playmaker for the Thunder side knocking back 21 points at 40 per cent from the field. She also managed five rebounds with only Ellen Kett out-rebounding her thanks to her nine. Emily Suckling was a force to be reckoned with draining 13 points as Ally Keating also kept the scoreboard ticking over for Keilor with 11 points in 30 minutes.

Bulleen (82) defeated Wyndham (71)

Bulleen picked up where they left off downing Wyndham in another convincing performance. The Boomers made all the running in the first quarter to create a five-point lead before Wyndham worked their way back into the contest, outscoring their opponents 22-20. That momentum was only shortly lived as the Boomers came out firing in the second half, playing with some serious conviction to add to their tally and limit the opportunities for Wyndham.

It was a phenomenal performance from Kate Gaze who simply had the ball on a string. Gaze was everywhere and could not be denied scoring over half of Bulleen’s points thanks to a staggering 47-point performance. She single-handedly led her side to victory and while Louella Tomlinson chimed in with a handy 16 points and managed a triple double thanks to her 12 rebounds and 11 assists it was Gaze’s game. Gaze converted eight of her 12 attempts from down town while also reeling in five rebounds and three assists. Kate Sturzaker plied her trade in her 14 minutes on court producing eight points. The efforts of Georgia Tauschke and Courtney Middap did not go unnoticed with the pair producing 17 and 15 points respectively. Jamilee Pearce was a strong option for Wyndham registering 12 points and 10 rebounds with teammate Jessica Slade also chiming in with a handy 10 points but not enough to bypass the Boomers.

Hume (90) defeated Whittlesea (45)

It was a tough day at the office for Whittlesea Pacers as Hume doubled their score to reign supreme and claim their first win of the season. It was a convincing performance by the Broncos leading from start to finish and never giving the Pacers a chance to build any form of momentum. Keeping Whittlesea to just seven points in the first quarter while adding 22 points of their own it was clear that Hume came to play and were going to capitalise on a flailing Pacers outfit. The Broncos outscored Whittlesea every quarter in a real showing of dominance, cleanliness and star power to not give up the chase and intensity.

There were a couple of key figures for Hume that paved the way with Hailey Wynd leading the charge credit to her 19 points. She was a commanding presence off the boards as shown through her 13 rebounds while she also racked up four dimes. Ellen Wright made her mark with 12 points in her 25 minutes on court while also producing seven rebounds. Charlotte Lord contributed nine points to Hume’s winning margin as Leilani Siamoa also posted nine points of her own albeit at 44 per cent. The reliable duo in Saule Kontautaite and Lyndsey Hoogenhout were formidable for Whittlesea with 17 and 11 points respectively. Kontautaite’s game did not stop there recording a double-double with her 10 rebounds, five assists and five steals.

Big V: Stats leaders – Round 3

WITH three rounds of the Big V competition done and dusted some of the top performers are coming to the fore in both the men’s and women’s. Draft Central takes a look at who is dominating in their respective areas and which teams are impressing so far.


Average points:

Luke Sist (Keilor) 24
Matt Turner (Western Port) 23
Daryl Corletto (Western Port) 21.33
Bul Niop (Blackburn) 21
Aaron Dolny (Wyndham) 20

Luke Sist has been a force to be reckoned with for Keilor, leading the way averaging a whopping 24 points each time he steps out on court. Western Port has proven to have a multi-pronged attack with both Matt Turner and Daryl Corletto lighting up the court with 23 points and 21.33 points respectively per game. Bul Niop is a steady stream of points for Blackburn while Aaron Dolny is a strong option for Wyndham thanks to his 20 points.

Average rebounds:

Luke Sist (Keilor) 23
Trevon Clayton (Sunbury) 14.33
Mark Steiner (Hawthorn) 11
Nathan Frost (Chelsea) 10
Mackeui Puondak (Hume) 9.67

Sist is not only a menace on the points-scoring front but so too when it comes to rebounds, leading the competition with 23 while Trevon Clayton is hot on his heels with 14.33 per game. Clayton has been integral for the Sunbury Jets, consistently bobbing up when needed and reeling in the rebounds – much like Mark Steiner for Hawthorn, who averages 11 per game. Nathan Frost is strong for Chelsea with 10 while Mackeui Puondak is lively for the Hume Broncos.

Average assists:

Matt Spencer (Keilor) 6.67
Jordan Geer (McKinnon) 6.33
Nic Laycock (McKinnon) 6
Mitch Lukey (Keilor) 5.67
Shayan Mahboobi (Hume) 4.67

Matt Spencer leads the way for assists producing 6.67 per game for the Thunder while Jordan Geer is handy with ball in hand for McKinnon registering 6.33 assists. Teammate Nic Laycock is also a dominant presence for McKinnon recording six assists each outing while Mitch Lukey is a reliable player for Keilor Thunder recording 5.67 assists. The final player to make it into the top five is Shayan Mahboobi with the Broncos representative registering 4.67.

Average blocks:

Jordan Vandenberg (McKinnon) 1.33
Nathan Marshall (Sunbury) 1
Tonga Matapule (Keilor) 1
Anthony Dell’Orso (Hume) 1
Tomi Ayilara (Wyndham) 0.67

McKinnon’s Jordan Vandenberg tops the table with 1.33 blocks per game while Nathan Marshall, Tonga Matpule and Anthony Dell’Orso are also influential with one block apiece. Tomi Ayilara averages just under one block per game with 0.67 to his name for Wyndham.


Average points:

Rebecca Cole (Bulleen) 30.5
Shereesha Richards (Casey) 26
Orla O’Reilly (Sunbury) 20
Louella Tomlinson (Bulleen) 19.67
Kate Gaze (Bulleen) 19.33

It is no surprise that three of the top five players when it comes to scoring are from Bulleen, given their dominance over the competition. Rebecca Cole has been a shooting sensation averaging 30.5 points a game while Louella Tomlinson and Kate Gaze are dynamic registering 19.67 and 19.33 points respectively. Shereesha Richards has been a consistent figure for Casey with 26 points while Orla O’Reilly has also proven to have a hot hand averaging 20 points per game.

Average rebounds:

Shereesha Richards (Casey) 13.33
Sian Gillam (Hawthorn) 13
Lyndsey Hoogenhout (Whittlesea) 13
Louella Tomlinson (Bulleen) 12.33
Fiona Darnell (Southern Peninsula) 9.67

Richards is not only handy on the scoreboard but so too off the boards, leading the competition with an average of 13.33 rebounds a game. Hawthorn’s Sian Gillam is the next in line with 13 rebounds per outing while Lyndsey Hoogenhout is a real livewire for the Whittlesea Pacers able to reel in the rebounds. Tomlinson has made her presence felt with an average of 12.33 rebounds while Fiona Darnell rounds out the top five thanks to her 9.67 rebounds.

Average assists:

Ellen Kett (Keilor) 7.33
Rebecca Cole (Bulleen) 7
Taylor Lee (Casey) 5
Sophie Byrnes (Hume) 5
Tegan Fowler (Casey) 4.33

Ellen Kett leads the way for assists producing 7.33 per game while Cole is hot on her heels proving to be a key facilitator for the Boomers with an average of seven per game. Taylor Lee is handy with ball in hand dishing off five dimes a game for Casey while teammate Tegan Fowler also features in the top five thanks to her 4.33 assists. The last player is Sophie Byrnes with the Hume Broncos representative racking up an average of five dimes a game.

Average blocks:

Louella Tomlinson (Bulleen) 6.67
Jessica Azzopardi (Hume) 2
Hailey Merrigan (Bulleen) 1.67
Fiona Darnell (Southern Peninsula) 1.33
Ella Crump (Hawthorn) 1

When it comes to blocks, Tomlinson has been a star leading the competition with a whopping 6.67 a game while Jessica Azzopardi is strong boasting two blocks a game. Hailey Merrigan is a force to be reckoned with for the Boomers credit to her 1.67 blocks as Darnell and Ella Crump round out the top performers in this respective field with 1.33 and one block per outings.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 4 preview

BIG V Women’s Round 4 commences on Saturday with Hume still on the hunt for their first win of the 2021 season. Meanwhile Sunbury Jets and Keilor look to make it four on the trot and create some ladder separation on the ladder.

Southern Peninsula vs. McKinnon
Saturday, April 10 @5:00pm

Southern Peninsula is enjoying a bit of a purple patch recording two wins in a row while McKinnon is coming off a narrow one point win. Although Peninsula sit higher on the ladder thanks to its two wins to one, both sides have proven they know how to win in close contests making for an enthralling clash.

Tanarly Hood is a real playmaker for Southern Peninsula, able to play large amounts of game time and hit the scoreboard at a regular rate. Teammates Shanara Notman and Fiona Darnell have both proven to be exciting players for the Sharks with their tenacity and rebounding ability a couple of key factors. Claire Ioannidis had a game to remember last round and will be eager to replicate her form after posting 19 points and five rebounds while Amelia Todhunter can be a real game changer when given enough time and space. Todhunter was relatively quiet by her standards but that does not happen twice so expect a big performance from the Bendigo Spirit representative. Katie Bluzer and Maxine Allan are also known to chime in with some handy points.

Casey vs. Keilor
Saturday, April 10 @6:00pm

Keilor currently boast an undefeated record with three wins straight and will have no intention of ruining that streak against Casey. Casey will be ruing their missed chance from last week, narrowly going down by a point and will be chomping at the bit to make amends and assert themselves on the competition. Expect a hotly contested game between the two sides given their scoring proficiency.

There is no denying that Shereesha Richards is the go to girl for Casey, often able to light up the court with her flair and sheer determination to work her way to the basket and score. She led the way in Round 3 with 14 points and will be looking to back up that performance this round. Georgia Koopmans chimed in with a handy 10 points while Rebekka Mawdsley will be one to keep an eye on in this clash. Keilor have multiple players that are capable of demanding the ball and changing the course of a game as shown through Emily Suckling’s performance last round. Zoe Zwerling and Ally Keating are other notable names for Keilor with the pair able to knock back the points.

Bulleen vs. Wyndham
Saturday, April 10 @8:00pm

The contest between Bulleen and Wyndham will be an interesting one with Wyndham dropping the last two games and Bulleen undefeated. The Boomers are littered with star players across the court and will be looking to expose Wyndham who have lacked a sense of consistency.

Rebecca Cole was missing from action last week but her addition would push the Boomers even further ahead given her explosive nature and scoring prowess. Teammates Louella Tomlinson and Kate Gaze both stepped up in her absence and are more than capable of single-handedly controlling the outcome of a game combining for 37 points last week alone. Kaylah Pangbourne and Kayla Vitale are also point scorers for the Boomers. Courtney Middap will be hoping to continue her hot start to the season with another strong outing as will Jessica Scannell who managed 11 points. Nicola Handreck cannot be underestimated able to turn on the heat when needed to hit the scoreboard and get her side the win. But it will have to be a full team effort if they are any chance to topple the undefeated Boomers.

Hume vs. Whittlesea
Saturday, April 10 @8:00pm

It will be a battle of the winless sides as Hume and Whittlesea go head-to-head in search of their first victory for the season. The Broncos have struggled to get points on the board in season 2021 and will be hoping to rectify that issue against Whittlesea in order to claim their maiden win. Similarly, the Pacers have been unable to find any real form, and are coming off a big loss in Round 3.

Indiana Bodley is the main facilitator for the Pacers able to consistently hit the scoreboard and ply her trade at either end of the court. She racked up 21 points in Round 3 while Lyndsey Hoogenhout and Saule Kontautaite are other key players for Whittlesea. The Broncos rely on a number of players being able to step up to the plate and hit the scoreboard instead of relying on the services of one players. Leilani Siamoa is known to bob up and hit the scoreboard for the Broncos as is Hailey Wynd and Tashia Overby. Sophie Byrnes is another livewire for Hume that will be looking to get amongst the action on Saturday night.

Hawthorn vs. Sunbury
Sunday, April 11 @2:00pm

Sunbury is yet to drop a game this season and up against the winless Hawthorn could make it four wins straight. The Magic have not been successful in terms of victories so far this year but have shown glimpses of brilliance to get within touching distance of their opponents. On the other hand, the Jets have been in scintillating form, with a number of their key players hitting the scoreboard with great ease.

Emily Kurkowski is coming off a strong Round 3 performance thanks to her 14 points and five rebounds while Bella Niven-Brown is another to keep an eye on after topscoring with her 15 points. The support from the likes of Ella Crump and Gemma Fyffe will also be important if the Magic are any chance of running over the top of the unbeaten Sunbury side. there are a handful of players for the Jets that are more than capable of keeping the scoreboard ticking over. Orla O’Reilly has been a consistent figure for the Jets coming off a 15-point, three-rebound, four-assist and three-steal performance. Courtenay Wragg and Tahnee Cannan are a dynamic duo for the Jets that are able to light up the court with their points scoring capabilities as is Emily Conn.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 3

ROUND 3 of the Big V Women’s saw Sunbury and Bulleen remain undefeated notching up convincing wins in their respective outings. McKinnon registered their first win of the season with a thrilling narrow victory over Casey.

Sunbury (74) defeated Hume (47)

Sunbury made light work of Hume Broncos disposing of them by 27 points. It was a fast start by the Jets and that ultimately set the tone as Hume were forced to play catch-up and they simply could not match the output of Sunbury. The Jets played with a sense of urgency and most importantly attacking prowess to keep the scoreboard constantly ticking over and keep the game well and truly out of reach from Hume.

The Jets had no shortage of players bob up and ply their trade in the win with Orla O’Reilly leading the pack with her 15 points, three rebounds, four assists and three steals. Courtenay Wragg and Emily Conn both came up big with 14 points apiece. It did not stop there for Wragg who racked up seven rebounds, four rebounds and two blocks as Conn dished off seven dimes. Tahnee Cannan was the only other player to reach double figures for the Jets finishing the match with 13 points to her name. Points were hard to come by for the Broncos but Leilani Siamoa was the main contributor producing 11 points albeit at a lowly 50 per cent from the field. Hayley Wynd worked relentlessly for her eight points and four rebounds as did Tashia Overby who managed five rebounds on top of her eight points.

McKinnon (52) defeated Casey (51)

It was a tight tussle between McKinnon and Casey with the game decided by a mere point showcasing the intensity of the match. In the end it was McKinnon that got the last laugh, doing enough to just limp over the line and secure their first win for season 2021. Casey burst out of the blocks limiting McKinnon to a lowly 15 points in the first half before they came out a whole new side in the second half to take out the win.

Claire Ioannidis did the damage for McKinnon recording a team-high 19 points while also dragging in five rebounds, all of which were defensive. The scoring fell off after that with the next closest Amelia Todhunter with nine points. Todhunter also managed six rebounds and four assists in the win while Morgan Ili just fell short of a double-double with nine points and nine assists. For Casey, the ever-reliable Shereesha Richards made her presence felt finishing with a double-double, reeling in 14 rebounds and 14 points in an all-round strong performance. Georgia Koopmans plied her trade with 10 points while Stephanie Leclerc managed eight points in her 16 minutes.

Keilor (78) defeated Wyndham (66)

The Thunder kept their undefeated record intact, proving they are a real threat to be reckoned with this season. Both sides were neck and neck for majority of the game as Keilor tried to break away but Wyndham lingered to keep fans guessing which way the game was going to go. But Keilor’s ability to withstand the barrage of attacking forays was evident, riding out the wave from Wyndham and then counterpunching to hit the scoreboard themselves and deliver.

There were a trio of stars that did the heavy lifting for Keilor as Emily Suckling produced a game-high 22 points at 50 per cent from the field. Ally Keating also chimed in with a handy 16 points, five rebounds, three assists and four steals in a strong showing while Zoe Zwerling also impacted the play thanks to her 10 points. Olivia Tsantarlis impressed in her 18 minutes on court recording eight points and 10 rebounds. For Wyndham, Courtney Middap continued her hot start to the season with 18 points, four rebounds and five assists. Teammate Jessica Scannell was the next closest finishing with 11 points as Nicola Handreck proved to be a menace off the boards credit to her 10 rebounds and seven points.

Bulleen (95) defeated Whittlesea (57)

A scintillating first quarter from Bulleen all but set up the win against a struggling Whittlesea side. The Boomers inflicted a wealth of scoreboard pain thanks to their 24-6 first term margin and from there they never looked like losing. In the opening half alone they managed 54 points and although the scoring died off in the second half as the Pacers upped the ante the damage was already done. It was all one-way traffic with the Pacers never really finding their groove despite winning the final term – albeit by two points – as Bulleen ran out with a convincing 38-point win.

The Boomers were missing key cog Rebecca Cole but that did not seem to faze the side as Louella Tomlinson spearheaded the attack thanks to her 23 points, 14 rebounds, four assists, three steals and five blocks. Kate Gaze was up to her usual tricks posting 14 points, six rebounds and two steals in another strong performance. Kaylah Pangbourne and Kayla Vitale were the other two players to reach double figures with 13 and 10 points respectively. But it did not stop there, with every single player on the Boomers list managing to register on the scoreboard, highlighting just how much of a team effort the win was. For the Pacers, it was Indiana Bodley that proved to be the go-to girl knocking back 21 points, four rebounds and two assists while teammate Saule Kontautaite plied her trade thanks to her 16 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Although Lyndsey Hoogenhout only managed two points in her 35 minutes on court, her strength off the boards was unmatched reeling in 12 rebounds.

Hawthorn (56) defeated Southern Peninsula (63)

It was a close contest between Hawthorn and Southern Peninsula with the latter just sneaking over the line with a seven point win. After an even start to the game Southern Peninsula put the foot down in the second term to really claim the ascendancy and create some much needed separation with a 21-12 term.

There were two main contributors for the Magic with Bella Niven-Brown topscoring with 15 points and a whopping 14 rebounds, with nine of them defensive. Emily Kurkowski was another main port of call for Hawthorn racking up 14 points, five rebounds and a block. Teammate Ella Crump also had an influence despite being in a losing side posting nine points and six rebounds. For Southern Peninsula, Tanarly Hood did the most damage with 16 points while reeling in eight rebounds all of which were defensive as she continued her hot start to the season. Shanara Notman was dynamic for her 12 points, three rebounds, three assists and two steals as teammate Fiona Darnell also made a splash thanks to her eight points and eight rebounds.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 3 preview

ROUND 3 of Big V Women’s is set to be a blockbuster with the unbeaten Sunbury kickstarting the weekend while Bulleen and Casey will also have a keen eye on keeping their unblemished record intact. On the other hand, Whittlesea and Hawthorn are searching for their first win of the season.

Sunbury vs. Hume
Saturday, March 27 @ 6:00pm

With two wins under their belts Sunbury will be striving for their third straight up against Hume Broncos on Saturday. The opening game of the round will bring plenty of excitement and intrigue from fans as they hope to impress. It is a tale of two very different stories with Hume yet to register a win this season while the Jets are yet to drop a game making for an interesting matchup given the vast ladder differences.

Orla O’Reilly is coming off a game to remember posting up 25 points in Round 2 to guide the Jets to victory while Tess Barnes and Bianca Dufelmeier are other handy options for Sunbury when looking at adding points to the scoreboard. The options do not stop there with Emily Conn a commanding figure off the boards along with Tahnee Cannan who is able to mount the pressure through her accuracy to the basket. Sunbury have no shortage of threats while Hume can struggle at times to generate any scoring power with only two players managing double figures in their last outing. Leilani Siamoa is a handful on the basketball court with her drive and tenacity a potential problem for the Jets while Sophie Byrnes has proven to be a consistent figure for the Hume side notching up 10 and 11 points respectively across the two rounds. Sunbury will have to look out for the likes of Ellen Wright who managed to impose herself off the boards and will be eager to replicate that performance to ruffle the feathers of the Jets.

McKinnon vs. Casey
Saturday, March 27 @ 5:30pm

Casey have enjoyed a hot run of form over the first two rounds, claiming back-to-back victories and asserting themselves as competition favourites. Both wins have been over 20-points highlighting their strong defensive ability, paired with their attacking intent to pile on the scoreboard pressure and suffocate their opponents. McKinnon have not had the ideal start to the 2021 season and will be fighting to restore their campaign.

There is no denying that Shereesha Richards is the go-to girl for Casey and often controls proceedings with not only her dead-eye accuracy but power to out-position opponents and reel in the intercepts. Richards knocked down 29 points and 10 rebounds last round, a small window into the powerhouse player she is and just what she is capable of. Expect Richards to draw a lot of attention from McKinnon however Alannah Gillespie and Rebekka Mawdsley are both known to pop up and contribute for Casey. It is no surprise that Bendigo Spirit aligned star, Amelia Todhunter is the player to watch for McKinnon given her ability to get free and cause all sorts of headaches on the scoreboard. Teammates Rosie Fadljevic and Katie Bluzer are others that are able to chime in whether it be off the boards or on a points scoring front.

Keilor vs. Wyndham
Saturday, March 27 @ 6:00pm

Wyndham have had a mixed bag of results to kickstart their 2021 campaign with a win and a loss headlining their season. The loss was at the hands of the unbeaten Sunbury Jets while the win was credit to a convincing performance against Whittlesea meaning they will be looking to consolidate this round. Keilor have also had an up and down season but have shown that they know how to win when under pressure, able to effectively grind out games.

The points are often shared around by Wyndham with Courtney Middap, Lauren Jones and Jamilee Pearce all able to throw their weight around and have an impact. Their efforts are not only felt on the scoreboard but so too in defence able to collect multiple rebounds. Another exciting prospect for Wyndham is that of Nicola Handreck who is coming off a 21 point and five rebound performance highlighting just how damaging she can be when given enough time and space. The Thunder have a shared mentality with multiple players able to ply their trade to keep the scoreboard ticking over. Bianca Babic is a livewire and is not afraid to get her hands dirty given her ability to pick up steals and register blocks. Emily Suckling is also a viable option for the Thunder as is Ellen Kent given her endurance and overall smarts.

Bulleen vs. Whittlesea
Saturday, March 27 @ 6:00pm

Bulleen boast a perfect record after two rounds and will have every intention of keeping that winning streak alive. The Pacers have not had the same luck still currently sitting winless, comprehensively beaten in both outings. Bulleen are a well-oiled team that use their silky ball movement down court to attack the rim and score freely while Whittlesea often struggle to find the right level of synergy to impact the scoreboard at a consistent rate.

The Boomers ooze class and boast one of the most prominent attacking units with Rebecca Cole, Kate Gaze and Louella Tomlinson all capable of running amuck. The trio combine seamlessly in both offence and defence with Cole coming off a stellar performance thanks to her 30 point, six rebound and seven assist effort. Gaze is just as exciting able to light up the court in an instant while Tomlinson is a force to be reckoned with off the boards. Hayley Merrigan and Annie Garrick are others that are able to chime in and impact the game. For the Pacers Indiana Bodley is the go to girl able to hit the scoreboard and reel in the rebounds while Lyndsey Hoogenhout will be keen to keep the good times rolling and get busy. Teammate Saule Kontautaite will have to have another big performance if she is to worry the Boomers and give her side a chance of stealing a win.

Hawthorn vs. Southern Peninsula
Sunday March 28 @ 2:00pm

The final game of the round gets underway on Sunday as Hawthorn and Southern Peninsula battle it out. Hawthorn are looking for their first win of the season while Southern Peninsula are aiming to secure back-to-back wins, meaning it will be a high intensity match as they aim to assert themselves and subsequently leapfrog their way up the ladder. Hawthorn fell agonisingly short in Round 1 and were well beaten last round.

Bella Niven-Brown was a gamechanger for the Magic producing 22 points last week and will be hoping to replicate that form once again here but this time in a winning side. Emily Kurkowski is another one for the Magic that is able to lend her hand on the points scoring front while Georgia Gray is never out of the contest thanks to her basketball nous. The combination of Tanarly Hood and Jayde Popovski is the one to watch for Hawthorn as the pair are able to seamlessly connect and cause scoreboard headaches for opposition sides. They are both renowned for their ability to get busy off the boards while Mikaela Watson impressed in Round 2 putting up 24 points at 64 per cent from the field.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 2 wrap

WITH Round 2 of Big V Women’s done and dusted there are a couple of sides such as Bulleen and Sunbury that remain undefeated while Keilor notched up their first win of the season. The round played host to a number of blowouts with teams flexing their muscles and subsequent scoring prowess with the closest game a 10-point ball-game.

Casey (86) defeated Hawthorn (57)

Casey made light work of Hawthorn with their scoring prowess really coming to the fore in the second quarter piling on 24 points to 12. After an even start to the game, Casey put their foot down to claim some ascendancy on the game and never looked back growing with confidence as the game went on. But Casey left their performance until the last quarter adding a whopping 30 points to 11 as their defensive and offensive skills shone through and they stunned the Magic.

Sheeresha Richards took centre stage for Casey throughout the clash posting a game-high 29 points in her 28 minutes on court. Richards was a real livewire for Casey and made the most of her chances shooting at 93 per cent from the field. Her dominance did not stop there though amassing 12 rebounds while Alannah Gillespie threw her weight around contributing 15 points and four steals. Rebekka Mawdsley was the next best for Casey as she managed 11 points and four rebounds. For the Magic Bella Niven-Brown led the charge with a commanding 22 points and could have had an even bigger day had she been accurate converting at 44 per cent. She was ably assisted by Emily Kurkowski who piled on 10 points of her own in her 30 minutes on court while Georgia McBean added seven points to the Magic’s tally. Her day did not stop there as she picked up two rebounds and three steals in the loss.

Hume (60) defeated Bulleen (84)

The Boomers powered past Hume Broncos on Saturday recording a 24 point win to sit undefeated after two rounds. Despite a sluggish start to the game, Bulleen hit back in the second and third term to get the game back on their terms and inflict some serious scoreboard pain. Hume only managed 29 points in the middle two quarters while the Boomers piled on 52 points themselves to completely dominate the play.

The Broncos had their work cut out for them up against a well-oiled Bulleen side but that did not stop Leilani Siamoa from finding the basket. She led the way for Hume knocking back 21 points at 64 per cent from the field while also registering six rebounds. Teammate, Sophie Byrnes also chimed in for Hume producing 11 points, five rebounds and 10 assists while Ellen Wright was a menace off the boards with 10 rebounds. The Boomers were inspired by the big three in Rebecca Cole, Kate Gaze and Louella Tomlinson. Cole starred thanks to her 30 points, six rebounds and seven assists as Gaze also managed 23 points, five rebounds and three steals. Tomlinson had a game to remember thanks to her double-double walking away with 18n points and 14 rebounds while also wowing fans with her eight blocks.

Whittlesea (56) defeated by Southern Peninsula (72)

Southern Peninsula got the jump on the Pacers from the opening quarter and never looking like losing from then on out. Their tenacity and accuracy immediately put Whittlesea on the back foot, forcing them to play catch up basketball which was a feat they simply could not match. Although Southern Peninsula lost the final term the damage had already been done with Whittlesea unable to really worry their opponents, and seeing Peninsula record a 16-point win.

Southern Peninsula shared the rock around throughout the game with a number of players stepping up to the plate and delivering the goods on the points scoring front. Ashleigh Wright impressed in the win posting 24 points at 64 per cent from the field while also amassing five rebounds. Teammates Fiona Darnell and Tanarly Hood bobbed up to get their side over the line recording 14 and 12 points respectively. Darnell was particularly strong off the boards registering a whopping 15 rebounds (11 defensive), three assists and a steal. Pacers looked to Saule Kontautaite to do the heavy lifting, posting 26 points to accompany her five rebounds, one steal and one assist. Lyndsey Hoogenhout was electric knocking back 13 points and reeling in 17 rebounds as Indiana Bodley also inflicted some scoreboard pain thanks to her 10 points.

Wyndham (54) defeated by Sunbury (64)

Sunbury sit undefeated after two rounds, notching up their second win of the season this time against Wyndham. Both sides worked in overdrive and never let the lead blow out too much highlighting the overall closeness of the contest. Each quarter the Jets extended the lead albeit marginally to eventually run out with a 10 point victory. Wyndham out-rebounded the Jets (46-34) while Sunbury shone when it came to steals (11-5).

There were two main producers for Wyndham with Nicola Handreck and Jamilee Pearce doing the most damage for their side with 21 and 13 points respectively. Handreck also dragged down five rebounds while Pearce secured 11 and two steals. Jessica Slade had an influence with nine points and 10 rebounds in a strong showing for her side despite the loss. The Jets were inspired by the efforts of Orla O’Reilly who managed a game high 25 points playing 38 minutes, but struggled with accuracy all round while also six rebounds and four steals. Tess Barnes did not muck around, posting 15 points and two rebounds while Bianca Dufelmeier shot at 57 per cent from the field in the win.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 2 preview

THE opening round of Big V Women’s brought plenty of close encounters and exciting performances from players with Round 2 gearing up to be just as exciting. Whittlesea Pacers and Southern Peninsula go head-to-head with the winner of the clash earning their first victory of the season as the contest between Wyndham and Sunbury will leave one side undefeated.

Casey vs. Hawthorn
Saturday, March 20 @ 6pm

Casey are coming in off a dominant win in Round 1 and will be hoping to solidify their standings with another commanding performance against Hawthorn. Boasting a number of scoring options it allows Casey to have a multi-pronged attacking unit that will be raring to go against Hawthorn to make it a two-zip start to the season.

Starring in Round 1 with a scintillating 35 points Shereesha Richards will be the one to stop for Hawthorn on Friday night with Richards proving to have an insatiable thirst once she gets going. Richards is also a menace off the boards reeling in 14 rebounds and posing a real threat, while Taylor Lee is also another exciting prospect for Casey. Rebekka Mawdsley started proceedings last round and will be wanting to up the ante in this outing.

Hume vs. Bulleen
Saturday, March 20 @ 6pm

Bulleen pulled out all the stops in Round 1 with all their big guns firing and announcing themselves as serious contenders. Sharing the points between a trio of a-list players Bulleen proved their versatility and potency something Hume will be aware of ahead of their Round 2 clash. The Broncos failed to get on the winners list last week and will be hoping to flip the script in this outing with some more precise ball movement attacking forays.

The Boomers are littered with stars across the court with Rebecca Cole coming off a 31 point showing and likely to turn that type of heat on, once again to lead her side to victory. Accompanying her is Kate Gaze and Louella Tomlinson with the duo able to effectively ply their trade with their scoring and rebounding ability paramount to the side’s success. For Hume, Sophie Byrnes proved to be a handy option but will need the likes of Nikki Spencer and Jade Azzopardi to step up and given the Boomers something to think about if they are to worry them.

Whittlesea vs. Southern Peninsula
Saturday, March 20 @ 8:30pm

It will be a battle of two winless sides as Whittlesea and Southern Peninsula go head-to-head on Saturday in hope to secure their first win for the Big V season. The Pacers were well and truly covered in their first outing as were Southern Peninsula who went down by 14 points but will be looking to bounce back in this matchup.

Expect the likes of Tanarly Hood to lead the way for the Sharks having topscored last week and also making a name for herself throughout the Country Basketball League. Hood alongside Jayde Popovski and Abbey McNamara could pose a real threat thanks to their combined rebounding ability and skill to keep the scoreboard ticking over. The Pacers have a couple of promising options with Indiana Bodey impressing in the opening game and likely to spearhead the squad once again while the efforts of Saule Kontautaite and Lyndsey Hoogenhout could prove to be the difference in getting Whittlesea over the line.

McKinnon vs. Keilor
Sunday, March 21 @ 3pm

The Sunday game between McKinnon and Keilor will be an interesting one as the two sides fight to make an impact on the competition and claim some early ascendancy. Failing to register a win last round, McKinnon will be eager to make amends for their efforts and notch up that all elusive “W”.

Despite being well beaten in Round 1 the likes of Amelia Todhunter and Rosie Fadljevic still managed to effectively ply their trade and inflict scoreboard pain, a feat they will be hoping to replicate against Keilor. Todhunter was strong on the rebound as was teammate Katie Bluzer finishing with 10 to her name showcasing her strength off the boards which could be a concern for their opponents.

Wyndham vs. Sunbury
Sunday, March 21 @ 1pm

It will be a fiery clash as both Wyndham and Sunbury look to keep their hot start to the season going and claim two wins straight off the bat. The Jets prevailed comfortably against Southern Peninsula but had a sluggish start an area they will want to address heading into the game. Wyndham also made light work of their opponent in Round 1 and will be aiming to keep that fast-paced, scoring mentality going to create some handy ladder separation.

There were three main stakeholders for Sunbury in their opening match with the trio recording double-figure points but will be looking for added depth in this match. In saying that, Bianca Dufelmeier led the charge producing 16 points and will more than likely be the main port of call in the game. Emily Conn and Tahnee Cannan are lively characters as is Nyomi Stowers. It is a similar story for Wyndham who boast another of scoring options as Courtney Middap, Lauren Jones, Jamielee Pearce and Sam Moodie all look to maintain that hot form.

2021 Big V Women’s: Round 1

ROUND 1 of Big V Women’s kicked off over the weekend with the closest game decided by 14 points. The round was dictated by dominant scorers and individual efforts with a number of players stepping up to the challenge and leading the way for their respective sides as Sunbury, Casey, Wyndham and Bulleen registered wins.

Southern Peninsula (46) defeated by Sunbury (60)

It took a while for both sides to get going with Southern Peninsula only recording a mere three points in the opening term. However Sunbury were not that much better finishing the quarter with nine points to their name. Scoring opened up in the second term as they both got a feel for the game and settled into the contest with Sunbury extending their lead at half time. The third term followed suit with the Jets piling on the scoreboard pressure thanks to their 16-12 point quarter. That ascendancy filtered into the final stanza of play as Sunbury overcame a sloppy and slow opening term to run home 14 point victors.

Tanarly Hood spearheaded the attack for Southern Peninsula knocking back 12 points and reeling in a whopping 10 rebounds. Teammate Jayde Popovski also played a crucial role for Peninsula posting 11 points albeit at a lowly 37 per cent while also producing six rebounds and two steals. Abbey McNamara and Mikaela Watson slotted six points apiece with the former also managing four rebounds. Sunbury was led by a trio of stars with Bianca Dufelmeier topping the tally thanks to her 16 points at 67 per cent from the field. Emily Conn and Tahnee Cannan were other handy options for the winners knocking back 12 points each along with a combined 14 rebounds.


Casey (77) defeat Hume (45)

In a one-sided affair it was Casey that walked away with the four points thanks to their 32-point demolition job of Hume. Casey jumped out of the blocks quickly claiming the ascendancy as shown through their 23 to 11 first term of basketball. That pressure did not falter throughout the contest as Casey looked to inflict a wealth of pain on their opponents who simply had no answers for what was being thrown at them. With the damage already well and truly done Casey took the` foot off the pedal in the final quarter.

It was a one woman display for Casey as Shereesha Richards dominated on the scoreboard with a whopping 35 points. Her efforts were undeniable, exploiting her opponents’ weaknesses and attacking the rim with great anticipation. Her stat line also saw her collect 14 rebounds, with 12 of them defensive highlighting her overall presence. Taylor Lee was the next best posting 14 points to accompany her six rebounds, five assists, four steals and one block. No player from the Broncos was able to really find their stroke, instead Hume relied on a couple of players to chip away at the scoreboard. Sophie Byrnes topscored with 10 points as Jessica Azzopardi slotted six points, eight rebounds, two steals and two blocks.  Nikki Spencer was dynamic in the loss adding six points to the tally while also collecting four rebounds, two steals and a block.


Whittlesea (57) defeated by Wyndham (76)

Wyndham wasted no time asserting themselves on the match, quickly creating some scoreboard separation between them and Whittlesea. The Pacers were forced to play catch-up immediately and ultimately were unable to work their way back into the contest such was the pressure and game plan implemented by Wyndham. A blistering third term from Wyndham all but set up the win, keeping the Pacers to as much as eight points while going on a scoring spree of their own sinking 26 points. Although Whittlesea bit back in the fourth it was too late to mount a comeback as the damage had already been done. It was the perfect way for Wyndham to kickstart their 2021 campaign producing a comprehensive win and most importantly digging deep to withstand the fightback.

Indiana Bodley took the reins for the Pacers knocking back 24 points and 11 rebounds in an all-round strong showing. Saule Kontautaite chipped in with 13 points and it did not stop there as she collected 10 rebounds, four assists and a whopping eight steals. Teammate Lyndsey Hoogenhout also made her presence amassing 11 points, 10 rebounds, four steals and two blocks. For Wyndham there were four players that hit the double-digit mark as both Courtney Middap and Lauren Jones topscored with 14 points. Middap managed six rebounds as Jones amassed seven assists and four steals. Sam Moodie slotted 13 points while Jamielee Pearce finished the match with 11 to her name alongside six rebounds, two assists and three steals.


Bulleen (88) defeated McKinnon (65)

A dominant second half of basketball gifted Bulleen with the win over McKinnon after the Boomers were caught napping in the opening two quarters. Bursting out of the gates, McKinnon made their intentions clear but could not sustain that high octane style of basketball, well and truly tiring in the third as Bulleen let loose. The Boomers unleashed in the third nullifying McKinnon in every which way possible to keep them to six points as they piled on the pain through their 26 points. That level of intensity continued into the final term as Bulleen could sense a victory and McKinnon were all out of moves, eventually going down by 23 points, despite their initial efforts.

Headlined by a trio of Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) stars the Boomers made their presence felt with Rebecca Cole doing plenty of the hefty lifting thanks to her 31 points. Although not overly accurate from beyond the arc her range from the charity strip was solid converting at 71 per cent. It did not stop there for Cole with the Southside Flyers represent reeling in 11 rebounds, seven assists and four steals. Cole was ably assisted by Kate Gaze who produced 21 points in the win. Gaze managed seven rebounds and three assists as Louella Tomlinson chimed in with 18 points at 67 per cent from the field. Tomlinson also impressed defensively thanks to her seven blocks, nine rebounds and two steals. There were only two players that managed double-digits for McKinnon as Amelia Todhunter stepped up to the challenge producing 21 points. Todhunter was strong off the boards with nine rebounds as Rosie Fadljevic walked away with 16 points and six rebounds to her name. Morgan Ili was a star off the boards for McKinnon credit to her 12 rebounds while also producing nine points, four steals and six rebounds.

At time of publishing results for Hawthorn and Keilor had not been confirmed.

WNBL Preliminary final: Townsville Fire v. Melbourne Boomers

IT is a do or die clash for the Melbourne Boomers and Townsville Fire as both sides aim to keep their grand final hopes alive with a win in the preliminary final. Melbourne is chasing its first premiership in over a decade while the Fire have enjoyed a rapid rise up the ladder and will be hoping not to bow out in straight sets.

The Boomers switched on the fireworks in their semi-final win against two-time premiers, UC Capitals and will be wanting to replicate those highs against a young and inexperienced Fire side. On the other hand, Townsville fell victim to a rampant Southside Flyers outfit that was eager to make amends for its shortcomings last year, succeeding with a dominant first term that set up the win.

In terms of recent results, the two sides cannot be separated with the Boomers and Fire winning three of their past five outings to highlight just how evenly poised they are. There has not been too much time between their last encounter with the second and fourth ranked sides meeting in Round 5, when Townsville Fire reigned supreme by six points. The Fire had the better of Melbourne, making them work in overdrive and shutting down a couple of their key figures, an area Melbourne will be hoping to address ahead of their preliminary final clash tonight.

Statistically speaking, the Fire have proven to be more potent in attack than their competitors; averaging 82 points across their 14 games while the Boomers have managed a lesser total of 77. If the Fire are able to find easy avenue to the basket, the Boomers could be in trouble. However, the Boomers’ strength lies in their defensive prowess with the side recognised for its ability to slow down opposition teams and be a real menace off the backboards, boasting 30 more rebounds than the Fire (565-535). Melbourne also reigns supreme in blocks (62-21) and steals (108-105) indicating its defensive minded techniques. When it comes to shooting percentage it is hard to split the two, however the Fire have the upper hand in all areas; going at 46.3 per cent from the field, 75.4 from the charity strip and 35.1 per cent from outside the arc compared to Melbourne’s 43.4, 73.2 and 33.1 respectively.

There are plenty of exciting players across the court with Lauren Nicholson and Shyla Heal likely to light it up for Townsville. Nicholson was awarded All-WNBL honours for her performances throughout the season, averaging 18.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.4 steals, 0.08 steals while shooting at a 48.1 field goal percentage. Heal has also been recognised for her breakout season, winning the Youth Player of the Year award and will be eager to keep her scintillating form going heading into the preliminary final. She has registered averages of 15.2 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.2 steals per game while another one to keep an eye out for is Zitina Aokuso, with her ability to come on and impact the play. Players such as Kate Gaze, Nadeen Payne and Stephanie Reid are also handy inclusions that are able to make a splash.

The Boomers are not without their plethora of stars, with Ezi Magbegor leading the pack. The defensive star averages some impressive numbers (14.8 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.8 steals and 1.1 blocks) and knows what it takes to perform on the big stage, converting at a 56.2 per cent clip. Partner in crime and Boomers captain, Cayla George is another dynamite player, able to leave a lasting imprint with her hot hand and rebounding ability; averaging 14.1 points, 9.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.4 steals and a little over a block a game. Maddy Garrick also has an uncanny ability to sense the moment and star, amassing averages of 10.9 points a game, 2.8 rebounds and 2.7 assists. Meanwhile, Tess Madgen is a force to be reckoned with alongside the likes of Ashleigh Karaitiana and Kalani Purcell.