INDEPENDENT NEWS

Determined Stars Pipped In Tight Tactix Contest

Published: Mon 22 Apr 2024 04:40 AM
Trident Homes Tactix defeated the Stars 59-54 in Christchurch
An impressive third quarter fight back hasn't been enough to stop the Stars from losing 59-54 to the Trident Homes Tactix in their round 2 ANZ Premiership match in Christchurch.
Both teams made a polished start to the contest, working hard to string phases together and trading goals back and forth.
Defender Lili Tokaduadua made her first start in the goal keep bib after a glowing debut against the Pulse and worked hard to put pressure on the Tactix' shooters alongside Kate Burley.
Equally at the other end, Rahni Samason and Maia Wilson were being made to hustle for every goal, with Tactix defensive pairing Karin Burger and Jane Watson breathing down their necks in and out of the goal circle.
The Tactix ultimately made the most of ball won and took a narrow 16-14 advantage into the second quarter.
Summer Temu came on for her ANZ Premiership debut in the second quarter at goal shoot and showed promise with some cool and calm play under pressure seeing her hit all of her second quarter shots at goal.
Both teams upped the tempo, with the Stars unable to maintain the pace at times and allowed the Tactix to regain possession and build on their lead, up by as many as eight goals.
The Stars continued to fight though and managed to close the gap to six goals, down 33-27 at the half.
Whatever was said at half time by coach Kiri Wills at half-time it certainly worked, as a reinvigorated Stars bounded out the gates with purpose to begin the third quarter.
While their defensive endeavours were fruitless in the first half, the Stars showed relentless hunger, with Kate Burley, Khanyè-Lii Munro-Nonoa and Holly Fowler helping win multiple turnovers, as the Stars surged forward and chipped away at the deficit.
At the other end of the court Wilson was staunch under the hoop, while Temu showed incredible poise, continuing her flawless shooting performance as suddenly the Stars had a well deserved lead.
The Tactix responded with some strong play of their own as the scored were locked at 43-all as an enthralling contest entered the final quarter.
It was to be a case of who would blink first as both teams cautiously moved the ball trying not to make any crucial mistakes.
Unfortunately it would be the Stars who would crack first, with the Tactix pouncing on some loose ball and able to fend the Stars off for the remainder of the contest.
The Stars remained defiant through to the final whistle and will be buoyed by a number of positives that emerged.
Temu was named player of the match on debut, netting all 20 of her shots at goal in a fantastic display.
Burley, Munro-Nonoa and Fowler were industrious all game, combining for five intercepts and 10 deflections.
The Stars are back home next week where they'll host the Avis Magic on Saturday.

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