Sevenoaks Suns 74-47 Cardiff Met Archers (18-6, 40-15, 53-31, 74-47)
(Suns: C.Carr – 14, L.Da Silva – 12, R.Busch – 11; Archers: M.Ball – 17, C.Bigica – 9, R.Lewis – 7)
Nottingham Wildcats 72-61 Manchester Met Mystics (12-18, 35-21, 50-47, 72-61)
(Wildcats: C.Shumpert – 29, S.Costa – 15, M.Lundqvist – 11; Mystics: N.Fong Lyew Quee – 14, S.Song – 14, G.Jones – 12)
Durham Palatinates 47-80 Leicester Riders (18-18, 24-45, 32-66, 47-80)
(Palatinates: C.Paxton – 17, L.Van Straaten – 13, J.Gyulai – 11; Riders: A.Smith – 17, M.Brewer – 16, H.Robb – 12
Caledonia Pride 90-96 London Lions (16-23, 41-48, 72-66, 90-96)
(Pride: M.Ranger – 27, E.Doherty – 25, S.Phillips – 17; Lions: K.Leonard – 29, S.Umeh – 26, C.Breen – 21)
Sevenoaks Suns guard Ta’yani Clark and Manchester Met Mystics guard Nicolette Fong Lyew Quee both reached their 1000th WBBL Championship points today as the Suns, Nottingham Wildcats, Leicester Riders and London Lions all secured victories as they all continue their form in the top half of the table.
The Suns were the first team to tip off as they hosted the Cardiff Met Archers, and the Surrey based team remained undefeated as they blitzed the visitors in the first half, racing into a 25-point lead at half-time as captain Catherine Carr had already achieved a double-double not more than 12 minutes into the game.
Lavinia Da Silva, Renee Busch and Millie Stevens all contributed more than ten points each for the Suns, who remained in control throughout the game as they shot over 50% as a team from the field.
Marlee Ball was impressive for the visitors as she scored 17 points in just over 27 minutes of game time, as well as grabbing five rebounds, while Cristina Bigica scored nine points off the bench as well as contributing seven rebounds for her team.
In Nottingham, Chelsey Shumpert stole the show as her incredible 29 points-performance proved crucial with the Wildcats defeating the Mystics by 11, while she also set up her teammates for buckets on seven occasions and made an impressive six steals too.
Moa Lundqvist almost achieved a double-double as she scored 11 points and grabbed a game-high of eight rebounds, including three on the offensive boards, while Simone Costa scored 15 points as she went 75% from the field as she knocked down all of her free-throws and converted her only three-point attempt to in a very efficient performance.
Milestone reacher Fong Lyew Quee scored the joint most points on her team with teammate Sophia Song, as they both put up 14, with Georgia Jones following just behind with 12 and Rheanne Bailey from off the bench with 11 – but it was their second quarter that let them down as they managed just three points as a team, 23 less than what they managed in the third and 20 less than what the Wildcats managed in the second.
The Championship leaders Leicester Riders tipped-off shortly after the final buzzer in the previous game and they raced into a comfortable lead against the Palatinates after the first quarter, which ended 18-18, but some fantastic defending from the visitors restricted the hosts to just 14 points over the second and third quarter combined, less than what they achieved in the first and fourth quarter alone.
The Riders had five players reach double-figures for scoring, including 17 from centre Amber Smith and ten from Azania Stewart who managed a double-double as she also grabbed 12 rebounds, a game and team-high which Holly Winterburn was the only Rider to get close to it as she grabbed eight as she also put up seven and made five assists in a well rounded performance from the guard.
Claire Paxton also put in a double-double performance, as the Palatinates captain scored 17 as she went 61% from the field, and she also grabbed ten rebounds, while Lies Van Straaten and Jazmin Gyulai were the only other Palatinates to score more than two points each, scoring 13 and 11 respectively.
The result put the pressure on for the Lions as both the Suns and the Riders won at the top of the table, and they were already travelling to Scotland with just nine players, presenting 15-year-old Ines Goryanova the opportunity to make her first WBBL start, as she put up ten points to help the visitors to victory in a tight contest against the Pride.
Three Lions managed to score more than 20 points, as Cassie Breen (21), Kennedy Leonard (29) and Stephanie Umeh (26) all starred for the team, while the latter managed a double-double as she also grabbed 11 rebounds for her team, while Leonard came close to a triple-double again as she made seven assists and grabbed eight rebounds in another very impressive performance.
Maud Ranger and Ella Doherty made it very difficult for the Lions, scoring a very impressive 27 and 25 points respectively, while Ranger also was active on the back-boards, grabbing eight for her team as only Sian Phillips won more, as she contributed 11 to supplement her 17 points for another double-double, but in the end the Lions’ little bit extra just about pushed them over the line.