Basketball: weekend dishes up mixed SBL fortunes for Willetton Tigers

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IT was a big weekend for the Willetton Tigers, with four crucial games played between the men and women.

Starting the weekend away to the Rockingham Flames, the women played hard but fell short after a poor second quarter that saw the home team sink 29 points to just 12. Willetton rallied in the second half to win the next two quarters, but it wasn’t enough to avoid a 60-75 loss.

In a low-scoring game, Ashli Payne top-scored for the Tigers with 10 points.

They had better luck at home against Stirling on Sunday, coming away with the 82-76 win.

Willetton jumped out of the blocks with a 27-19 opening quarter before Stirling pegged back the score in the next two to be up 57-52 at the end of the third.

A strong finish from the Tigers in the fourth, which saw them pile on 30 points to just 19, helped avoid a double weekend loss.

Carla Drennan dominated on the score board with 20 points, while Samatha Norwood and Payne had 13 points each.

The Willetton men had similar results, dropping 21 points short of Rockingham on Friday in a 107-86 loss.

Rockingham got off to a hot start in the first quarter to jump out to a 11 point lead, a deficit the Tigers would struggle to make up for the remainder of the game. Despite the disappointing result Badou Diagne was hard to stop, sinking 25 points, while Damien Scott netted 16.

After watching the women secure a win against Stirling on Sunday, the men backed it up with an 83-69 win themselves.

It looked like being an up-and-down affair as the teams traded buckets in the opening quarter but the Tigers were able to settle and despite a fight back from the Senators were able to hold onto the 14-point win.

Diagne again topped scored for Willetton with 19 points, while Kyle Armour sank 18.

After 12 games Willetton’s women are sitting third on the ladder behind Lakeside and Rockingham, while the men are fifth after 14 games.

Willetton will next take on Lakeside Lightning on June 2 at the Lakeside Recreation Centre.

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