The U/14 Ballarat Rush proved to be too strong for seventh placed Altona on Friday night at the Mars Minerdome, with the Rush securing the win by eight points. A few key players for the Ballarat Rush were Alana Bodey with eight points, Brydi Hutchinson hitting 10 points and Maggi Kratochvil scoring 15 points for the match.
Opening the first playing period was a fast paced, but low scoring opening quarter. Altona and the Ballarat Rush initially struggled to get the points on the board, missing a few open field goals and opportunities in the paint. A brilliant 3-point shot by Alana Bodey closed the playing period with Ballarat having a six-point lead over Altona (10-4).
The second quarter saw another high intensity, fast paced quarter. The U/14 Ballarat Rush got off to a flying start, getting six points up on the board within the first two minutes of the quarter. Strong defensive pressure by Ballarat forced multiple turn overs in Altona’s back court. Tight defence on Altona’s behalf enabled them to bring the game back within three points, until Ballarat’s Alana Bodey nailed a three-point field goal with five seconds to go, the Ballarat Rush maintained their lead of six points as they pause for the half time break. (22-16).
During the third term, a high foul count for both Ballarat and Altona saw both sides having a number of trips to the free-throw line. The Ballarat Rush maintained their lead as prepared themselves for an outstanding fourth term.
In the final playing period, the U/14 Ballarat Rush came out firing, with some fantastic offensive and crafty plays enabling the Rush to extend their lead by 12-points. Strong defence by the Rush limited Altona’s chances for easy baskets, permitting them only to take contested shots and free-throws. A strong finish by the Rush saw them bring home victory by eight-points over Altona (45-37).
Head Coach of the U/14 Ballarat Rush, Ryan McKew, was very pleased that “the girls come out with a lot of energy and the mindset to compete”, he added that “these two aspects demonstrated by the girls was the main reason behind them securing the victory”. McKew stated that the win tonight will certainly give the girls a confidence boost going into the first round of VJBL finals next week. “The girl’s ability to commit to teamwork will really help us going into the first round of finals”.
The U/14 Ballarat Rush’s Brydi Hutchinson was Most Valuable Player for the match, for displaying outstanding offence and defence for the duration of the match.
Match Report: J.Ronan, K.Gannon.