Sunday’s Big V Youth League action got underway with the Ballarat Rush taking on the Nunawading Spectres at the MARS® MINERDOME.
The Rush’s Kasey Burton looked to be aggressive right from the game’s opening, forcing her way to the free throw line and scoring the majority of Ballarat’s points in the early going.
The Rush began clicking on all cylinders, and all five starters had scored within the game’s first four minutes. The home side quickly opened up a double digit lead and forced the Spectres to take their first timeout of the contest.
Nunawading regrouped out of the timeout and had a slight rally to end the opening period and cut the lead.
Molly Mathews showed off her shooting prowess throughout the second term – consistently nailing deep jumpers with confidence.
An incredible second quarter for Ballarat saw a 19-0 run in their favour as they blew the game wide open. Lydia Brooks dominated the glass as usual, ripping down eight rebounds in the first half alone.
Burton continued to control the tempo of the game well, getting rebounds and setting up her teammates for good shots.
The Rush continued to share the ball and play with confidence and looked to have the game won as they entered the locker room at halftime.
A slow start offensively to the second half for both teams made a Nunawading resurgence begin to look even more unlikely – as a combined two points between the sides were scored in nearly four minutes of action.
Ash Stainer led a late third quarter rally for the Spectres, as they cut a 21 point lead to just 13. However, Ballarat’s Claire Constable calmly drilled a three-pointer coming out of a timeout against the flow to steady the ship.
The Rush proved too good as the game continued throughout the fourth quarter. Up by more than 30 and the result beyond doubt, it gave coach Darren Govan a chance to give valuable minutes to some of the younger girls.
Ballarat closed out the game and took victory, 76-55.
Kasey Burton put up 15 points and 8 rebounds, while Lydia Brooks was also strong with 13 rebounds.
Ash Stainer was the shining light for the visitors, tallying 13 points.