It wasn’t the start to our Round 14 road trip to the West we hoped for as the Perth Lynx lynched and snarled in response to their defeat Saturday night shooting down the Lightning 104-79 at the Bendat Basketball Centre last night…
In the continued absence of Marina Mabrey, the Lynx’s other WNBA import from the Las Vegas Aces put on a clinical first half to finish with 30 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists. Her along with Opals Sami Whitcomb (22 points at 50 percent from beyond, 5 rebounds), Darcee Garbin (14 points at 44 percent from beyond and 6 rebounds) and South Aussie Alex Ciabattoni (13 points at 60 percent from beyond, 7 assists and 4 rebounds) compiled a devastating 14 of 30 at 47 percent beyond the arc. Kiana Williams was solid the whole night with 17 points and 4 assists with Alanna Smith chipping away for 17 points and 7 rebounds for the Lightning.
THE WRAP Q BY Q
The Lynx got off to a fast start in the first with a 6-13 start on the back of 3 of 3 from beyond the arc from Young, Whitcomb and the ever-reliable Ciabattoni. The Lightning then jumped on a mini 2-6 run through their imports Kylee Shook and Williams to drag it back slightly. Some bombs from deep from Whitcomb and Emma Gandini extended the home side margin but Smith’s putback off the offensive board got it back to 26-20 at quarter time.
Perth opened a 32-24 lead early in the second through Young and the returning Lauren Scherf as they bullied the Lightning in the post and that caused Chris Lucas some concerns and a quick adjustment. Brook ‘n’ Shook pulled it back to 34-29 but Young continued to cause issues in the paint and mid-range with a 5-0 run of her own; summed up when she dished to Whitcomb to make it a 7-0 run at 43-31. Steph Talbot and Smith grabbed a couple of buckets as well as a block and assist to cut the margin back, but the Lynx continued to hit tough strokes through Whitcomb and Alex Sharp as the Lightning trailed 54-42 at the half.
Young and Scherf started with a 7-0 run broken by Shook with a much-needed trailing triple. The Lynx however were running some beautiful half-court sets and worked for each other as they pushed their margin out to 66-47. The Lightning pulled it back slightly, but the Lynx continued to answer despite a timeout to the home side on some defensive breakdowns 75-55. Garbin continued to light it up from deep and despite a buzzer beating triple from Williams, the Lightning were looking at their largest three-quarter time deficit of the season 80-59.
The start to the fourth was a three-point blitz from both teams with Garbin, Ciabattoni and Williams making it rain for their respective sides. With the margin 92-71 and a second game in the coming days, the Lightning gave their pine a run to finish the contest with both teams getting ready for the rematch on Wednesday night. The Lynx iced the match comprehensively 104-79 to break the Lightning’s unbeaten road streak in the WNBL 21-22 season.
THE MOMENTS LIGHTNING STRUCK
WHEN THE NEXT STRIKE COMES
Luckily the Lightning will get another crack tomorrow night and with another day to adjust and review some of what happened in this one; expect a much different contest tomorrow and a closer clash in the return bout.
PERTH LYNX 104 (Young 30, Whitcomb 22, Garbin 14, Ciabattoni 13, Scherf 12) DEFEATED ADELAIDE LIGHTNING 79 (Williams, Smith 17, Talbot 13, Shook 12, Brook 8) at Bendat Basketball Centre