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Match Report: Women move to top of the table after dominant first half display

Ipswich 71 - 62 Thames Valley Cavaliers

WNBL Division One

Ipswich Basketball Club’s Senior Women moved clear at the top of WNBL Division One with a dominant first half performance against fourth placed Thames Valley Cavaliers on Saturday.

With Anglia Ruskin and Solent both without a league game this weekend, Ipswich had the chance to build on last week’s top of the table win against ARU, and move clear at the top of the league, albeit having played more games than their closest rivals.

Thames Valley came into the game as a one of the more dangerous teams in the division. With some seasoned veteran players, and two of the league’s leading scorers (Kelsi McNamara and Diana Voynova), TVC have recorded some impressive victories in the first season in Division One. However, Ipswich flew out of the blocks in the games first half, playing their usual high paced brand of basketball that few teams are able to keep up with. With all nine Ipswich players playing a key role, Ipswich Coach Nick Drane was able to rotate through his roster without the tempo dropping. The hosts led 27-15 after one and extended that lead to 45-27 by the games half way point, playing some of their best basketball of the season.

The second half, however, was not so spectacular. Ipswich clearly took their foot off the gas, but more so, Thames Valley upped their game – clearly not in the mood to be blown out. The lead was cut to fourteen going into the fourth quarter and cut to as few as seven at one stage. However, Ipswich simply tightened their belts quickly extending things back up to double figures,  eventually holding on for a comfortable 71-62 win.

“I thought we were outstanding in the first half, and not so outstanding in the second half. But some credit must go to Thames Valley, who were really tough today, especially in the second half. Diana Voynova is a handful at any level and you really have to plan for her, and they have some other very good players at this level” Said Ipswich Coach Nick Drane. Drane added “Sometimes I think people forget that there are two teams out there – TVC are an excellent team in this league, so whether we win by one or thirty one, this was a very good day at the office”.

Ipswich now turn their attention to the Solent Kestrels, who they visit next weekend. Solent are sitting on a 8-2 record, and are one of only two teams to beat Ipswich all season, and the only team to win at Copleston. If Ipswich can maintain their 100% start to 2020, they will be in the driving season in WNBL Division One with just five games to play.

Top Scorers:

Harriet Welham 23, Esther Little 16 & Danielle Cazey 9.


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