Basketball: Perth Redbacks start finals with losses

Stock image.
Stock image.

THE Perth Redbacks had a tough start to the finals, with both the men’s and women’s teams losing game 1 of their respective series.

In the Men’s SBL, the battle of fourth against fifth between the Redbacks and South West Slammers always shaped as being the most exciting of the quarter-final contests and that was certainly the case with game 1 at Belmont Oasis on Saturday night.

It was a game of momentum and both teams had their chances to go on runs during the first half.

The Redbacks scored the game’s first four points and led by as much as seven during the first quarter but the visitors led 46-43 at the break.

The Redbacks turned things around in the third quarter and were on fire after the break with the opening 11 points.

They ended up leading by as much as 13 points and still by 10 heading into the fourth quarter.

All season long the Slammers have shown they are never out of games and that they are capable of stunning fightbacks.

Game 2 will now take place at Eaton Recreation Centre on Saturday night and if the Redbacks win, game 3 back at Belmont Oasis on Sunday.

In the Women’s SBL, the second-placed Magic hosted the Redbacks in Mandurah and claimed a seven-point win.

The Redbacks scored first but Mandurah then piled on the next 13 points to lead 13-2 after four minutes.

The Magic remained in control, leading 22-7 by quarter-time and 40-20 by half-time. The game was effectively over as a contest but the Redbacks showed good fighting spirit in the second half to outscore the Magic 39-26.

They did get back to as close as five points in the fourth quarter but could not quite break that barrier.

The Magic will be happy with the dominant start but not so much the second half that gives the Redbacks some heart heading into game 2 on Saturday night at Belmont Oasis.