The battle for the Mitchell-Greenwood trophy often brings out the best in the Hobart Chargers and Launceston Tornadoes and last weekend was no exception as the Chargers won an overtime thriller, 85-84.
The Tornadoes moved in front 6-4 early but never led again as Hobart took control and led by as much as 19 points at one stage.
Launceston made a comeback though via a 15-5 run in the final five minutes as Lauren Nicholson scored the last four points of the game to send it into overtime.
Newcomer Zoe Mitchell (six points, four assists) had a heave at the buzzer which missed and then Sharna Thompson began the extra period in style for Hobart with a three-pointer.
Kathleen Scheer made it a 7-0 run to start overtime for the Chargers but again Nicholson responded, scoring five quick points herself.
Paige French (12 points) then nailed a triple herself and Thompson missed two free-throws on the subsequent play which left the door open for the Tornadoes, trailing by a point with 18 seconds remaining.
Nicholson was unable to hit the game-winner though, squeezed between two Hobart defenders as she drove to the rim.
Thompson has continued her rise as one of Hobart’s key players, despite being just 17 years of age, and she finished with 33 points on 9-14 shooting including 6-8 from long distance.
In her first game back for the club, Kathleen Scheer was also outstanding with 23 points, 19 rebounds, five assists and two blocks to help counter the best efforts of Nicholson (39 points, 12 rebounds, five assists) and Ellie Collins (16 points, 13 boards, five assists, two steals).
The Chargers were also buoyed by 18 combined points off the bench from Alex Finlayson and Josie Greenwood to get the club on the winners list while Launceston have fallen to 0-2 and are now searching for a new import following a devastating knee injury to Mikaela Ruef.
ROUND 2 RESULTS:
Alongside Kilsyth on top of the ladder, Nunawading own a 3-0 record and have won by an average margin of 12 points following another consummate performance against Diamond Valley. Albury/Wodonga strung together a rare winning streak to begin the season before falling to Melbourne who claimed their first scalp of the season. The CoE, who are eligible for finals in 2018, recorded their first victory and now sit at 1-3 while Frankston are languishing at the bottom of the ladder and things do not get any easier as they prepare for a clash against the Spectres next week.
BA CoE def. Ballarat 85-81
Sandringham def. Frankston 77-53
Sydney Uni def. by Albury/Wodonga 53-64
Diamond Valley def. by Canberra 57-64
Dandenong def. Sandringham 74-61
Melbourne def. Albury/Wodonga 87-58
Nunawading def. Diamond Valley 87-68
Kilsyth def. Frankston 78-54
Launceston def. by Hobart 84-85
Canberra vs. Ballarat (game abandoned due to stadium blackout)
BA CoE def. by Sydney Uni 50-57
Adam Smith of the Hobart Mercury recapped the Charger’s victory over the Thunder: http://www.themercury.com.au/sport/chargers-bounce-back-to-crush-arch-rivals-an-open-seabl-account/news-story/d16f81417c39d6bda586684067945a17
Smith also wrote about Kathleen Scheer’s return to the Hobart women’s team: http://www.themercury.com.au/sport/basketball/european-stint-has-star-seabl-forward-confident-she-can-take-her-game-to-greater-heights/news-story/f987e4a50930ffd452bd7d9a9eb42f15
Caden Helmers covered the blackout which saw both Canberra games abandoned for the Sydney Morning Herald: https://www.smh.com.au/sport/basketball/the-lights-go-out-on-canberra-s-seabl-home-openers-20180415-p4z9pv.html
Deba George’s perimeter game leads the Bandits to victory wrote Chris Young for the Border Mail: https://www.bordermail.com.au/story/5343423/deba-george-on-fire-as-albury-wodonga-bandits-split-road-double/
Young also covered the Lady Bandits’ success over Sydney Uni: https://www.bordermail.com.au/story/5343396/lady-bandits-improve-to-2-1-with-road-double-split/?cs=10
Andrew Mathieson analysed the Tornadoes’ last minute efforts in a narrow loss to the Chargers: https://www.examiner.com.au/story/5342579/tornadoes-left-in-spin-over-dramatic-finishes/?cs=96
More bad news for Launceston with a Mikaela Ruef knee injury in the last game of her European season meaning she will miss #SEABL18 for the Tornadoes: https://www.facebook.com/launceston.tornadoes/posts/896343180548053
Photo Credit: Beetle Black Media