ROUND 11 - Men
Sunshine Coast Phoenix v Brisbane Capitals
For the first time in the 2019 QBL season the Sunshine Coast Phoenix find themselves outside of the playoff picture. Round 10 saw Gold Coast come to town and defeat the Phoenix by 8 points in overtime. Sunshine Coast took a 13-point lead into the major break but struggled on the offensive end in the second half to let the Rollers back into the game. McAlister put in a massive 31 points and 13 boards whilst playing all 45 minutes. Brisbane suffered a major scare to their undefeated season surviving a last-minute nail biter against the Force. Aaron Anderson’s clutch 4-point play with 13 seconds to go gave the visitors a 1-point lead and the eventual victory. The Capital’s backed up with a 25-point flogging of Logan on Sunday. Jason Cadee starred with 50 points and 7 assists including 7 made 3-pointers. Cadee was a more than worthy Player of the Week winner, averaging 43.0 points and 6.5 dimes in what was another 2-0 weekend. Phoenix limp into this contest winning only 1 of their past 6 matches and with this form we don’t see them getting close to the 12-0 Capitals. Brisbane by double figures.
Gold Coast Rollers v USC Rip City
The Rollers move into outright second on the QBL ladder after a 2-0 weekend which saw them making light work of Ipswich before surviving an overtime thriller against the Phoenix. Spencer Parker put in two massive performances and finished the weekend with impressive averages of 29.0 points and 5.0 rebounds in the two victories. With 5 of their remaining 6 games of the regular season against teams outside of the Top 8, it appears the Rollers are in a strong position to cement home court advantage come playoff time. USC managed to split their home double 1-1 with an impressive win over the struggling Toowoomba after a disappointing loss to Southern Districts. Jerron Jamerson was a welcome inclusion averaging 27.0 points on 70% shooting, whilst Jalen Bradley averaged 29.5 points over the weekend. The wins just keep coming for the Rollers and they should record another one over the visiting Rip as they put another dagger into their Playoff aspirations.
Cairns Marlins v Rockhampton Rockets
The Marlins bounced back in strong fashion following their Round 9 loss to Gold Coast pumping the visiting Meteors by 19 points. A commanding first quarter which saw Cairns leading by 16 at the first change set up the strong performance for the home side. Jurlina, Fisher and Krslovic all put in 20+ as they were able to step up in the absence of Loughton. The Marlins lock down defence had the visitors in all sorts as the Meteors were kept to their lowest offensive tally of the season. The Rockets put a close on their 6-game home stand with a 14-point win over the struggling Seahawks. The victory is the fourth straight for Rockhampton and now has them pushing on the heels of the Top 4. Sean O’Mara put up a huge 26 points and 18 rebounds as he dominated the paint without Ogilvy. In what will be one of the Men’s QBL Games of the Week this is a huge contest between 5th and 6th on the ladder. The Rockets will be looking to square the ledger against the Marlins who defeated them in Rockhampton back in Round 6. Marlins in a close one.
Logan Thunder v Gladstone Port City Power Surge
Logan suffered a disappointing loss at the hands of the undefeated Brisbane Capitals by 25 points at Auchenflower Stadium. The Thunder had no answer for Capitals guard Jason Cadee who went off for 50 points and 7 assists. The loss puts an end to Logan’s three-game win streak and only a game inside the Top 8. Logan struggled on the offensive end only managing 86 points which is their second lowest scoring output for the season. Look for Mitch Young to bounce back after his quiet game where he only managed a season-low 10 points. Gladstone had another disappointing result in Round 10 going down to the Seahawks by 16 at home despite North Gold Coast backing up for the second game in as many days. Young and Tipene kept up their strong form scoring 22 and 21 respectively. Logan will have a point to prove after their disappointing efforts against the competitions benchmark and they will comfortably extend the Power’s losing streak to a 12th consecutive game.
North Gold Coast Seahawks v Ipswich Force
The Seahawks split their road double header weekend 1-1 with a loss to the Rockets followed by a strong bounce back victory over Gladstone. North Gold Coast entered the main break only down 2 points against the Rockets but their inability to score consistently with the game in the balance proved costly as they eventually fell 65-79. The Seahawks took full advantage of the struggling Power putting up a season-high 105 points in their 16-point victory. Goldfinch contributed well across both games as he finished the weekend averaging 19.5 points. After a disappointing Friday night loss to the Rollers, Ipswich nearly pulled off a miraculous upset against the ladder-leading Capitals falling by the smallest of margins in devasting fashion. Two more losses see the Force fall down the 13th on the ladder with a 3-9 record heading into the final month of the regular season. League scoring leader Kyle Harvey again put in a huge weekend with 32.0 points and 13.5 boards. A matchup between 12th and 13th looms with us giving the nod slightly to the Seahawks as they search for their second consecutive victory.
Toowoomba Mountaineers v Rockhampton Rockets
The Mountaineers went down 112-94 to USC on the Sunshine Coast in Round 10. A 29-15 second quarter was the difference in the contest as Toowoomba had no answer for the Rip’s new duo in Jamerson and Bradley who combined for 57 points. The lead extended to as much as 29 in the final term before the Mountaineers pulled the margin back to a somewhat respectable final margin. Daniel Sims had an impressive game for the visitors finishing with 25 points, 7 assists and 5 steals. The Rockets will be playing their second game of an unorthodox triple header weekend which sees them heading south despite a Friday night game in Cairns. With the Mountaineers still only sitting on the one win for the season the Rockets should walk into Clive Berghofer Arena confident of adding to their 2019 pain. Expect Toowoomba to be extremely competitive against a side that will be run down by the travel but Rockhampton should prove to have too much firepower.
Southern Districts Spartans v Sunshine Coast Phoenix
The Spartans have kept their slim Playoff hopes alive with an important 13-point road victory over USC in Round 10. Scott Kenny was huge off the bench for Southern Districts finishing with 33 points which included knocking down 8 three-pointers. Chris Whitehead continued his strong form with 26 points on 80% shooting. With another winnable game against the struggling Phoenix in sight this is another perfect opportunity for the Spartans to continue their push for one of the couple remaining playoff positions. Sunshine Coast will be backing up after a tough matchup against the 12-0 Capitals and with their season slowly slipping away from them, this match is as equally important for both teams. Although Rowland Cowan Stadium hasn’t exactly been a fortress for the Spartans, Southern Districts should get the W on their home court.
Mackay Meteors v Townsville Heat
The Meteors will be keen to get back on the winners list after dropping both games on their northern road double to Townsville and Cairns. Mackay were in. a strong position entering the fourth quarter in Townsville but were outscored 20-36 in the final term to go down by 8 points. Washington was again a beast with 29 points and 13 boards whilst playing all 40 minutes. The slow finish from Friday led to a slow start Saturday in Cairns, falling behind by 16 at the first break. The Meteors pulled the game back within 6 during the third before the Marlins were able to extend their lead and runaway with the comfortable win. Townsville will head into this match up full of confidence after their comeback victory over one of their biggest rivals last week. Jamell Anderson was impressive with 19 points in the win, whilst Wilcher and Crawford had 22 and 21 respectively despite off shooting nights. With Rockhampton and Cairns both within 2 games off the fourth spot this is a must win game for the home side. In what will be a must watch game across the league, Mackay should keep their undefeated record at McDonald’s Mackay Stadium alive.
South West Metro Pirates v Rockhampton Rockets
The Pirates Round 10 bye came at a much needed time following their two Round 9 losses to Ipswich and Southern Districts. After winning 3 of 4, South West have lost their past three to find themselves at 4-7 and 10th on the QBL ladder. Despite struggling over previous weeks the Pirates are still only one game out of 8th position but have found themselves in a difficult position where they need a lot to go their way over the final month. This will the start of a busy period where the Pirates play 7 games over a 28-day span. It all kicks off with one of the league’s hottest teams coming to town, in the Rockhampton Rockets. This will be the Rockets third game of an extremely busy weekend and their fourth since the Pirates last stepped onto a playing court. South West will not get a better opportunity to knock off the 5th placed Rockets who will no doubt be playing off adrenalin come Sunday afternoon. We expect the Pirates to scrape through with a victory and continue to apply pressure to the Top 8.
ROUND 11 - Women
Sunshine Coast Phoenix v Brisbane Capitals
The Phoenix open Round 11 with a home clash against the winless Brisbane Capitals on the Sunshine Coast. The Phoenix see themselves sitting outside the eight and with a double header this weekend must be able to pick up some vital wins heading into the final stretch. Amy Browne had another great game last weekend against the Rollers with 21 points and 10 rebounds, whilst Carlie Smith had 19 and 10 and Caitlyn Clancy chipped in with 17. Sunshine Coast couldn’t bounce back from a first quarter stumble and eventually went down by 10 to Gold Coast. The Capitals almost pulled off an incredible upset against Ipswich but fell heartbreakingly short by 2 points before being defeated by Logan at home the next day. Shanavia Dowdell averaged 17 points over the weekend for Brisbane as well as 16 rebounds to confirm her star status on the team. Madi Woodford didn’t score against Ipswich but was able to put up 21 against Logan the following day. The season is over for Brisbane, but they will be desperate to grab their first win of the season, whilst the Phoenix will be looking to crack into the eight with a big win at home.
Cairns Dolphins v Rockhampton Cyclones
The Dolphins’ chances of finishing in the top eight are starting to slip away after a tough overtime loss to the Meteorettes in Round 10. The Dolphins were outplaying in the extra period only managed 2 points to Mackay’s 15. Angela Tompkins had 28 points and 9 rebounds for the home team, whilst Janee Thompson scored 22 with 8 assists playing the entire game. The Dolphins are back home in Round 11 against the second-placed Rockhampton Cyclones who have now won four straight. It’s a difficult triple-header for the Cyclones however, as a trip to Cairns is followed up by games against Toowoomba and South West Metro in the southeast. The Dolphins will take great confidence going into this game after upsetting the Cyclones in Rockhampton in Round 6. Both teams have plenty to play for in this clash which makes it one of the games of the week.
Gold Coast Rollers v USC Rip City
The Rollers enjoyed a 2-0 weekend away from home in Round 10 defeating Ipswich by a point then backing up with a 10-point win over the Phoenix on the Sunshine Coast. Jacqui Luna-Castro averaged 21 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists over the weekend, whilst Ariana Moorer scored 15 and 24 against Ipswich and Phoenix respectively. Susannah Walmsley was also impressive for the Coast averaging 17 for the weekend. USC finished Round 10 with a 1-1 record, going down to the Spartans by 5 on Friday before demolishing Toowoomba by 22 the following night. New recruit Kisha Lee was outstanding against the Mountaineers with 45 points including 5-8 from behind the arc to go along with 15 rebounds. Tahlia Tupaea was best on court against the Spartans with 29 points, whilst Chevannah Paalvast averaged 18 points for the weekend. It’s a crucial game for the Rip as they look to climb the ladder, however, the Rollers are the team in form and should get home in this one.
Logan Thunder v Gladstone Port City Power Breakers
Logan have now won three on the trot after a commanding 13-point win over the Capitals last weekend. Mikaela Ruef put up big numbers once again with 19 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists to lead the way for the Thunder. Ash Taia had 18 points and 8 rebounds, whilst Mikhaela Cann was again outstanding in attack with 10 assists to go along with her 11 points. The Power had a disappointing loss at home last week getting thrashed by the Seahawks 107-76. Amarah Coleman led the way for the Power with 26 points, Briana Bailey had 20 and Ash Kelman-Poto had 15 shooting at 55%. The Power have suffered from poor shot selection and turnovers so far this season and it looks increasingly likely that they will miss the playoffs for the second consecutive year. For Logan, they need to keep winning to cement a top eight finish and a big win at home this round could propel them into the top four.
North Gold Coast Seahawks v Ipswich Force
The Seahawks had an up and down trip to Central Queensland last week; beaten by Rockhampton before thrashing the Power in Gladstone the following night. Deja Middleton averaged 27 across the weekend including an outstanding 37 points and 15 rebounds against Gladstone. Casey Samuels had 31 points over the Power, whilst also top scoring with Emily Allen who each had 19 against Rocky. The eighth placed Seahawks tackle an Ipswich team who were down on form last weekend despite going 1-1 at home. The Force were overrun by the Rollers on Friday night losing by a point at the death, before narrowly escaping against the Capitals the following day hanging on for a 2-point win. Amanda Johnson had 25 against the Coast but was kept quite against Brisbane with just 7, whilst Georgia Ralph had an average of 15 points across the weekend and Amy Lewis scored 12 and 14 for the team. The Seahawks have just five games remaining in the season and with the Phoenix breathing down their necks for that eighth position they will be keen to get a much-needed win over the Force at home in this one.
Toowoomba Mountaineers v Rockhampton Cyclones
Toowoomba suffered a heavy defeat on the Sunshine Coast last Saturday going down to the Rip by 22 points. Anita Brown continued her great form with 34 points and 6 dimes, whilst Demi Skinner and Kristina King each scored 23 points. Depth continues to be a big issue for the Mountaineers as the stats show it’s these three leading the way for the girls out west. Next up they host the Cyclones in the second of three games for the Rockhampton team. The Cyclones still sit second on the ladder and will be keen to cement a top-two finish leading into the final month of the regular season. Rockhampton will need to remain fit and healthy for an arduous trip down south coming off a flight from Cairns the night before and will be aiming to put up a big number over the Mountaineers. Rocky should have this one wrapped up but the challenge of playing three games on the weekend could take its toll.
Mackay Meteorettes v Townsville Flames
Mackay take on Townsville for the second week in a row after the Flames picked up a 6-point win at home in Round 10. New recruit Abby Bishop was outstanding in her first outing for the Flames scoring 40 points and picking up 13 rebounds in her QBL Player of the Week performance. Lisa Brennan was the next best Flame scoring 14, whilst Rachel McCully picked up 9 assists in the win. The Meteorettes bounced back strongly after their loss in Townsville to take down the Cairns Dolphins by 13 points the following night. Erica Covile was again the star for Mackay averaging 24 points and 16 rebounds across the two contests. Leeza Burgess, Alex Delaney and Heidi Freeburn were also good over the weekend and will need to be at their best if the Meteorettes are to exact revenge against their northern rivals. This should be the game of the week with both teams looking to finish in the top four by the end of the round.
Carina Leagues Club Lady Spartans v Sunshine Coast Phoenix
The Spartans continued their unbeaten streak holding on for a close 5-point win over the Rip on the Sunshine Coast last Friday and will be going for 12 straight when they host the Phoenix in Round 11. Odette Isaac was the leading scorer for the defending champs with 24 points at 53% from the field. Leah Scott had another impressive game registering 16 points and 9 rebounds, whilst Nat Taylor and Aja Parham-Ammar each scored 12 in the win. The Spartans are seemingly impossible to beat and at their home fortress the task becomes even harder for a Phoenix team going into their second game of the weekend. Carlie Smith and Amy Browne have had the biggest contribution for the Sunshine Coast this season and will hope to put pressure on a Spartans team with stars and depth across the court. Based on form and records it looks like the Spartans express will continue to roll on in Round 11.
South West Metro Pirates v Rockhampton Cyclones
South West Metro will be looking to get their season back on track in Round 11 fresh off the bye and staring down the barrel of five straight losses. The Pirates sit eleventh on the ladder and looking for answers after a horror last month saw them lose to the Phoenix, Rollers, Force and Spartans. Kayla Roberts has been the leading scorer for the team with 16 a game, whilst Madelyn Willey is averaging 10 but the depth continues to be an issue. The Pirates host Rockhampton for the Cyclones’ third game of their weekend and what will be a physically tough challenge. Rockhampton will be hoping to cement a top-two spot after the weekend and with two of their last four games at home will be primed to host another final come August.