With nerve-rackingly close losses in the last two weeks, the Integra Ballarat Rush must approach this weekend’s double header in Canberra with confidence.
The Rush take on the Canberra Capitals Academy on Saturday night, who are yet to win a game. Although the team has put on several competitive performances, no player has really stood out consistently at the offensive end of the court, with Sarah Mcappion the leading scorer with just 13 points per game.
Across town, meanwhile, the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence has compiled six wins, and although four of those wins were over teams either last or second-last on the ladder, two came against powerhouses Geelong and Kilsyth. CoE are led by recent WNBA draftees Carly Mijovic (17.8ppg 11.5rpg) and Steph Talbot (13.2ppg 8.6rpg) and point guard Tessa Lavey (14.6ppg 4.3apg).
The Rush have taken some big scalps for themselves with early wins over Nunawading and Bendigo, and have a wealth of firepower in Steph Cumming (23.4ppg), Kristy Rinaldi and Nya Mason (25.3ppg 14.2ppg combined), and youngsters Abbey Wehrung and Sophie Alexander (19.5ppg combined).
There is no doubt the Rush are capable of going 2-0 this weekend and returning to their early-season form. Facing Albury-Wodonga and Sandringham in the following weeks – two teams with only one win between them – Ballarat could find themselves comfortably back in the top four.
Tip off in Canberra is at 5:30 this Saturday night, and midday Sunday against the Centre of Excellence.
Thank you to Thrifty Ballarat for providing all our travel needs.