Facing the first team who beat them this season, followed by the team at the top of the ladder, this weekend is a defining one for the Integra Ballarat Rush.
The Rush host the Frankston Lady Blues at the MARS® MINERDOME this Saturday night for a rematch of the April outing which the Blues won. Before that game, Frankston were able to conduct some thorough scouting during their week off while the Rush were playing their third game in seven days. This time, the Rush know what to expect and have had adequate time to prepare, so are expecting a different outcome.
A tough road trip in Tasmania which inflicted two losses will have the team fired up and more determined than ever, and the talent certainly is there.
Four Rush players are scoring in double figures including Steph Cumming who is the league’s leading scorer. Senior players Kristy Rinaldi and Nya Mason have been reliable as always, while youngsters Sophie Alexander, Abbey Wehrung and Kasey Burton have each proven their ability to step up when needed.
Frankston are not short of firepower either with Maddie Garrick, Nicole Romeo and Kelly Bowen combining for an average 50 points, 18 rebounds and eight assists per game. Although Frankston are not in Ballarat’s conference, this game is crucial for the Rush to get back on track.
On Sunday the Rush head to Dandenong to face the league-leading Rangers who are undefeated on their home floor.
While the Rangers have a host of WNBL talent, their strength this season has arguably been their ability to work as a team – Lauren Scherf is their top scorer with just 14.1 points per game, but even their seventh-top scorer delivers close to nine points.
The Rush will have to be at their best to take two wins this weekend, but if they do, the sky’s the limit.
Tip off against Frankston is at 6pm at the MARS® MINERDOME followed by the GMHBA Ballarat Miners versus Mount Gambier at 8pm in the SEABL Men’s Game of the Week.