ROUND 9 - Men
Gladstone Port City Power Surge v USC Rip City
The Power suffered their eighth straight defeat as they were no match for the visiting Mackay Meteors in Round 8. Gladstone did not win a single quarter as they eventually fell by 24 points. Despite the have loss, Paul Aleer was impressive for the home side finishing with 20 points and 10 board. The Power only managed to convert on two shots from behind the arc, an area they’ll need to improve if they are any chance to snap their losing streak. USC are also backing up after a heavy loss, this time at the hands of Logan. Rip were able to pull the game back to a 21-point margin in the final few minutes after trailing by as much as 29 in the final term. The Tueta brothers were both massive as Isaih had 30 points, closely followed by Josh’s 21. Rip allowed a whopping 118 points on the defensive end as the Thunder shot at 58% for the game. This is a great opportunity for USC to get back on the winners list after losing their past two matches. Gladstone are 0-5 at Kev Broome Stadium with an average losing margin of 16. Despite USC struggling as of late they should prove too strong for Gladstone.
Townsville Heat v Gold Coast Rollers
The Heat enter Round 9 full of confidence after smashing the 1-9 Toowoomba Mountaineers by 26 points at Townsville StarFM Stadium on Saturday night. Townsville led by 25 at three quarter time which allowed them to empty the bench see valuable minutes for all players. Mines and Wilcher put in 19 apiece as Anderson had 17 of his own. Gold Coast have pushed their win streak to 5 games, this time coming off a 14-point big road win over the Pirates. The Rollers now find themselves in second position on the QBL ladder boasting a 7-1 record. Gold Coast’s defensive pressure was outstanding against South West as they recorded 15 steals which led to a whopping 25 turnovers committed by the home side. Rhys Martin led the way for the Rollers with 19 points, 6 assists and 5 steals. In what looks to be the QBL Game of the Week between 2nd and 4th this match will go a long way towards securing home court for the winner. As good as Gold Coast have been to this point in the season, we favour Townsville to expand on their undefeated home record in 2019 in a close one.
Brisbane Capitals v North Gold Coast Seahawks
The Capitals open up a home double header weekend as the North Gold Coast Seahawks come to Auchenflower Stadium. Brisbane kept their undefeated season alive smashing the 13th placed Spartans by 32 points in Round 8. Despite having an off shotting night, Cadee had a double-double with 23 points and 10 assists, as Volkman and Magnay also pulled down points-rebounds double-doubles. Brisbane’s bench contributed a massive 41 points in the contest, highlighting the overall depth in their 2019 squad. The Seahawks got themselves back on the winners list with a low-scoring 6-point victory over Phoenix on the Sunshine Coast. North Gold Coast restricted Sunshine Coast to a season low 65 points as their shooting numbers plummeted to 28% for the night. Goldfinch put in 20 points whilst Campbell added 19 of his own. Tom Howard managed 11 and 11 off the bench. The win has kept Seahawks somewhat in reach of the playoffs as they now find themselves in 11th on the ladder. Brisbane move to 9-0 easily.
Logan Thunder v Toowoomba Mountaineers
The Thunder have gotten their season back on track as they moved to 5-4 on the season after two big Round 8 victories. Logan begun the weekend with a 13-point win over Ipswich and followed it up with a 21-point flogging of USC, both at Cornubia Park Sports Centre. Mitch Young led the team with impressive averages of 23 points, 8 rebounds and 2 blocks across the two wins. Mitch’s big weekend led him to being awarded the QBL Player of the Week for Round 8. Bryan Coleman also put up 21.5 points and 7.5 rebounds, while Simmons averaged 14.5 points, 9.5 assists and 2.5 steals. Toowoomba are coming off a tough northern road double where they were no match for Cairns and Townsville, losing both by 22 and 24. The Mountaineers remain the league’s second lowest scoring team at 79.1 a night as they continue to look for more threats on the offensive end. Logan will be looking to return the favour against a Toowoomba outfit who took the W in their Round 6 contest – which is their only win on the season to date. The Thunder will be too strong in this one.
Rockhampton Rockets v Sunshine Coast Phoenix
The Rockets have backed up their massive Round 7 win over Townsville with a 16-point drumming of the Mackay Meteors, all but ending their 8-game win streak. All five Rockhampton starters contributed in a big way as Jamaal Robateau had another efficient game finishing with 29 points on 64% shooting. Ogilvy and O’Mara combined for 43 points and 20 boards, while Bruce and Mitchell combined for 17 dimes. After such a promising start to the season, Sunshine Coast have quickly found themselves at 8th place on the ladder after a 1-1 weekend and dropping 3 of their past 4. Phoenix only managed a season-low 65 points against the visiting North Gold Coast Seahawks as the fell by 6 points. Luckily the squad was able to quickly regroup and take a 12-point win over the Force to close out the round. This game will open up a challenging three game stretch where they face not only the Rockets but the top two placed teams in the coming weeks. Rockhampton appear to have put their early season struggles behind them and they extend their winning streak to a third game.
Cairns Marlins v Gold Coast Rollers
Cairns extended their winning streak to five with a dominant 22-point win over the struggling Toowoomba Mountaineers. The Marlins have kept their opponents to an astonishing 76.4 points a night, whilst outscoring them by an average of 17 points over this stretch. The squad continues to share the offensive load with no player scoring more than 14 points, yet five players reaching double figures in the victory. George Blagojevic stuffed the stat sheet with 13 points, 14 rebounds and 7 assists. Gold Coast will have another challenging task ahead of them, backing up the night after a hit out in Townsville against the Heat. Similar to the Friday night Heat v Rollers game, we are giving the home team the slight advantage. The Marlins enter the round undefeated at Early Settler Stadium and should be able to account for the tired Rollers.
South West Metro Pirates v Ipswich Force
The Pirates missed an opportunity to go above .500 for the first time this season, falling to the 7-1 Rollers by 14 points at Hibiscus Stadium. In what was a strange game by South West where they were +22 on the glass but lost by double figures, largely due to committing an unforgivable 25 turnovers. Five players hit double digits but a big focus this week will be on taking care of the ball to maximise on their overall dominance. Ipswich suffered two Round 8 losses to Logan and Sunshine Coast to fall to 2-7 on the season. The Force continue to struggle defensively and despite Harvey putting up big offensive numbers it’s not enough to get them over the line on a regular basis. South West to win comfortably at home and put pressure on those teams at the bottom of the playoff picture.
Brisbane Capitals v Gladstone Port City Power Surge
The Capitals and Power will both be playing their second games of the weekend in a rare battle where 1st plays 15th on the ladder. In what looks like a complete mismatch on paper this is the perfect opportunity for Gladstone to gain some respect back from the rest of the league and put in a big effort against the competitions benchmark. We look forward to the exciting match up of Cadee (21 points and 7.5 assists) v Young (19.8 points and 5.9 assists) who are two of the league’s best guards. Cadee will be looking to put up a more efficient shooting night after going at 29% from the field (17%3PT) over his past two performances. This could get ugly for the visitors who will most likely suffer their 10th straight loss come Sunday afternoon.
Southern Districts Spartans v South West Metro Pirates
To this point of the season the Spartans have had a year they would like to forget, sitting at 13th with a 2-7 record at the halfway point. Southern Districts suffered a whopping 32-point loss to their league-leading Capitals in Round 8. The Spartans allowed an unforgivable 21 offensive rebounds and 60 points in the paint in the loss, as Brisbane still managed 115 points despite a sub 50% shooting night. Whitehead still managed 24 points, 7 boards and 6 assists despite attempting 20 shots. South West will be backing up after a Saturday night home game against the Force. The Pirates have a realistic opportunity to go 2-0 for the weekend as they play 12th and 13th on the table. Despite being on the road, South West should enter Rowland Cowan Stadium full of confidence as they look the superior team in the contest. We expect the Pirates to get the win in a close contest and move inside the 8 after two important Round 9 victories.
ROUND 9 - Women
Townsville Flames v Gold Coast Rollers
The Flames managed to avoid a home defeat to Toowoomba last weekend escaping with a 4-point win thanks to a massive final quarter comeback. Kourtni Perry top-scored for the home side with 18 points; Alicia Froling and Lisa Brennan had 17 each whilst Rachel McCully impressed with 12 assists. Froling was also massive in D with 16 rebounds and 3 blocks as the Flames recorded their fifth win of the season to keep in touch with the eight. Townsville will take on a Gold Coast side who have now won four on the trot thanks to another 20-point win over the Pirates in Brisbane last week. The Rollers are in the middle of a three-week away stretch and wins against teams like the Pirates are vital to their playoff chances. Jacquie Luna-Castro led the way for the Coast with 26 points, whilst Siarn Woods had 6 threes in her 20 points on the night. This matchup should be a great test for the Rollers on their northern double-header as they look to cement a place in the top eight, whilst Townsville should benefit from some big new inclusions. Round 9 will be off to a great start with this encounter and it should go down to the wire.
Gladstone Port City Power Breakers v USC Rip City
Gladstone face Round 9 with a home and away weekend first up hosting the USC Rip City on Friday. The Power are still searching for their second win of the season having put up a good effort against Mackay last weekend eventually going down by 12 points. Depth continues to be a problem for Gladstone with just eight taking the court last Sunday and two of those eight playing just two minutes. Amarah Coleman continued her good form with 19 points, whilst Akilah Bethel had a day out registering 15 points, 15 rebounds and 7 assists. The Rip make their second trip to Central Queensland for the season and will be looking to get back on the winners list after a 29-point thumping at the hands of Logan last round. Tahlia Tupaea led the way for the Rip with 19 points and Maddison Rocci was the only other player to hit double-figures with 11 as USC were demolished by a fired-up Logan outfit. Rip City sit two games outside the eight and will target this game as a must-win to elevate their chances of playing in the post-season this year. Rip to win in a close one.
Brisbane Capitals v North Gold Coast Seahawks
Despite a spirited effort against the competition-leading Spartans last weekend, the Capitals remain winless in 2019 going down by 25 points at home in Round 8. Brisbane have a home double-header this week with matchups against Gladstone on Sunday and the Seahawks first up on Saturday night at Auchenflower. Shanavia Dowdell returned for her second game of the season with 26 points and a whopping 20 rebounds, whilst Madi Woodford had 12 points in the loss. The Seahawks have dropped to seventh on the ladder after a tight 6-point loss to the Phoenix on the Sunshine Coast last weekend. Deja Middleton and Lauren Jansen combined for 39 points, whilst Casey Samuels recorded 10 rebounds and 9 assists as the Seahawks failed to peg back a fourth quarter deficit. This games becomes highly important now for North Gold Coast who need a few wins to ease the pressure and maintain their position in the eight. The Seahawks have had the wood on the Capitals having won their last two encounters including the Round 3 clash this year and should have enough to get another win here.
Logan Thunder v Toowoomba Mountaineers
Logan recorded a 1-1 weekend in Round 8 going down to Ipswich in a thrilling game before thumping USC the next day by 29 points. Ash Taia and Mikaela Ruef each averaged 21 points across the weekend and Mikhaela Cann had 14.5 points, whilst Ruef grabbed 19 boards and Cann had another 11 assists per game for the Thunder. Despite these big stats, the Thunder have struggled for consistency this season and see themselves sitting precariously in eighth position on the ladder with a 5-4 record. This weekend they host the Toowoomba Mountaineers who almost pulled off one of their biggest ever victories in Townsville going down to the Flames narrowly by 4 points having led the game well into the final quarter. This spirited performance came off the back of a 22-point thumping to Cairns the night before which left the Mountaineers empty handed on their trip to the north. Anita Brown had a massive weekend for Toowoomba registering averages of 29 points, 10.5 rebounds and 5 assists and was well supported by Demi Skinner with 21.5ppg, 3.5rpg and Kristina King who had 18.5ppg, 5rpg and 2.5apg. Logan got the win over Toowoomba a fortnight ago and at home should have the weapons to take down the Mountaineers again.
Cairns Dolphins v Gold Coast Rollers
The Dolphins have now recorded three straight wins thanks to a commanding 101-79 win over Toowoomba last Friday night. Angela Tompkins received the QBL Player of the Week for Round 8 on the back of a 26 point, 16 rebound and 4 assists game, whilst Janee Thompson also produced her best performance of the year with 26 points and 5 assists. Shaneice Swain continued her impressive form with 19 points as the Dolphins aim to surge up the ladder with their second half of the season. The Rollers will be backing up from a trip to Townsville the night before and will hope that a clash against the Flames can put them in good shape for a tricky contest with the Dolphins. Luna-Castro continues to be the go-to player in the middle as Gold Coast have put on a terrific four-game unbeaten streak. With another tough away double-header facing the Rollers next weekend it will be important for them to come away from the north with at least one win and this game will be well and truly winnable for the Coast. Two teams in great form should ensure a cracking contest in Cairns.
Rockhampton Cyclones v Sunshine Coast Phoenix
The Cyclones have moved to second on the QBL ladder thanks to a close 5-point win at home over the Mackay Meteorettes. Brooke Blair was dominant for the home side putting up 27 points including 7-12 from downtown as well as 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Jess Thomas was close to a triple-double with 20 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists, whilst Davis and Vandenberg combined for 26 rebounds in the win. The Cyclones are starting to find their form at a crucial part of the season and welcome a spell of home games to set up their push towards the playoffs. The Phoenix travel up north for the second time this season sitting in fifth position with a 6-3 record. Alexis Hyder had another fantastic weekend averaging 20 points, 18 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game and was well supported by Smith 15ppg, Huland El 13ppg and Brown who had 13.5ppg. The Phoenix finished the weekend with a 1-1 record after recorded a close win over the Seahawks but were no match for the Force at home on Sunday. It’s 2 vs 5 in this contest and with the home advantage look for the Cyclones to take this one out and cement a top-two position by the end of the week.
South West Metro Pirates v Ipswich Force
The Pirates come into Round 9 facing two of the best teams in the league and under pressure with a 4-5 record outside of the eight. South West fell to the Rollers at home in Round 8 and now have the tough task of taking on an in-form Ipswich team and the competition-leading Spartans away from home. Mia Loyd hit 19 points for the Pirates last week against Gold Coast but will be hoping for some more support particularly from the middle court. Ipswich are starting to hit their straps with two impressive wins last weekend away from home. The Force got a narrow win in Logan over the Thunder before taking apart the Phoenix on the Sunshine Coast on Sunday. Amanda Johnson continues to be the star for Ipswich averaging 21 points and 15 rebounds a game, whilst Amy Lewis has also been a good contributor with 14 points per game this season. It will be tough to see the Pirates getting over the top of Ipswich based on both teams’ form of late, however, at home and desperate for a victory, the Pirates need a massive performance to get the W in this one.
Brisbane Capitals v Gladstone Port City Power Breakers
It’s a battle of the cellar-dwellers at Auchenflower when the Capitals host the Power on Sunday afternoon. Both teams are desperate for a win with any chance of playing post-season seemingly evaporating in the past couple of weeks. The youthful Capitals team have been good in patches this year but nowhere near consistent enough and find themselves winless in a disappointing campaign. The addition of Shanavia Dowdell should provide much-needed experience and star quality to the team and coach Marshall will hope that the import can galvanise this proud club. Gladstone have experienced just the one win this season and will have the added pressure of having to travel down to Brisbane having hosted the Rip on Friday night. There have been good contributions from Coleman, Bethel and Kelman-Poto throughout the season, however, the Power’s lack of depth has been exposed and the reliance on these three has taken its toll. Brisbane have the home crowd advantage and their loyal fans will be doing everything they can to get the team their first win of the season. Capitals to break their duck at home.
Carina Leagues Club Lady Spartans v South West Metro Pirates
The final game of Round 9 sees the table-topping Spartans take on the South West Metro Pirates at Rowland Cowan Stadium. The Spartans have dominated opposition in 2019 and once again flexed their championship credentials against the Capitals last week with an 83-58 thrashing. Leah Scott top-scored with 31 points, whilst Aja Parham-Ammar and Odette Isaac both had good games with 21 and 20 respectively. The Pirates face the toughest test of the competition on Sunday already backing up from a clash against Ipswich the night before. It’s always an intense rivalry when the Spartans and Pirates meet and for South West’s sake, they will hope that this contest can bring the best out of their players. The Pirates cannot afford to turn over cheap ball to the defending champions otherwise they will see the chances of finals basketball slowly slip away from them. Spartans at home should make it 10 from 10.