December 19, 2017 | WNBL news

RUN HOME TO THE 2017/18 PLAYOFFS

Inside the final fortnight of the 2017/18 regular season, only five teams remain in the fight for a playoff position but no side is secure in their spot just yet.

Perth Lynx: 14-4, First
To Come:
Melbourne (H), UC Capitals (A), Townsville (A).

The Lynx continue to roll on with 13 straight wins and are the first team to officially book their place in the 2017/18 finals. They have now beaten every team in the competition after defeating Melbourne by three points on Sunday and if they get past the Boomers on their home floor this Saturday afternoon, they will own the season series against every other side currently in the top four.

A win in that game would also sew up top spot but even if they lose, they only need to win one of their last two matches to take first place thanks to their head-to-head results against the Fire.

JCU Townsville Fire: 11-6, Second
To Come:
UC Capitals (A), Bendigo (H), Sydney Uni (A), Perth (H).

Townsville have had their struggles against Dandenong this season but responded to two prior losses with a 12-point victory on Saturday and now one more win will book a spot in the playoffs thanks to their season series over Adelaide.

They face a heavy schedule on the run home though including two trips East but will be focused on taking care of business in Round 12 against two teams outside the top four. If they can extend their winning streak to four after next weekend they will be in prime position for a second-placed finish as they own a 3-0 series lead against Melbourne.

Deakin Melbourne Boomers: 11-7, Third
To Come:
Adelaide (A), Perth (A), Dandenong (H)

Melbourne could have been just one game off top spot if they had completed their comeback against Perth on Sunday but a narrow loss may have now resigned them to a place outside the top two.

Round 12 is a daunting task as they visit Adelaide who must win to keep their hopes alive and then Perth in their third and final meeting of the regular season. One win will be enough to secure a playoff spot thanks to their season series against Adelaide and if they all win all three of their remaining games, first place is still a chance. In that scenario, they will need to rely on the Lynx to drop a few more clashes though while without the season series against Townsville, they will also be watching the Fire’s results closely to see if they can move back into the top two by the end of the regular season.

Brydens Sydney Uni Flames: 11-7, Fourth
To Come:
Adelaide (H), Townsville (H), Bendigo (A).

Facing two non-playoff teams last weekend, Sydney Uni did what they had to and they can now clinch a finals spot on Saturday afternoon with a win over Adelaide.

Looking beyond that, they own the season series against Melbourne which will give them hope of moving up from fourth while a final meeting with Townsville in Round 13 will decide that series which means second place is still on the cards for the defending Champions.

MAC Adelaide Lightning: 9-9, Fifth
To Come:
Melbourne (H), Sydney Uni (A), Bendigo (H)

Proving how damaging the absence of Natalie Novosel is, Adelaide could not get past Perth or the Caps last weekend which has put their playoff hopes in serious jeopardy.

Without the season series against Melbourne or Townsville, only fourth spot looks possible for the Lightning but two previous wins over the Flames will give them confidence. It should also help heading into one last meeting with Sydney Uni but a double-header against them and the Boomers in Round 12 is a difficult prospect.

Jayco Dandenong Rangers: 7-11, Sixth
To Come:
Bendigo (A), UC Capitals (H), Melbourne (A)

Dandenong are the walking wounded and on the back of four straight losses are now out of playoff contention. They would still consider their Round 12 double against the Spirit and Caps as winnable games which would hold off a fast-finishing Canberra for sixth place but without the season series against Adelaide, it does not look like they will advance any higher up the ladder.

University of Canberra Capitals: 5-13, Seventh
To Come:
Townsville (H), Dandenong (A), Perth (H).

It has all come too late for the Caps but a three-game winning streak has given the team and their fans a reason to smile. Averaging 75 points per game this season, they scored 91 against Bendigo and 88 against Adelaide but still face two serious tests against Townsville and Perth before the season is over.

Bendigo Spirit: 3-14, Eighth
To Come: 
Dandenong (H), Townsville (A), Adelaide (A), Sydney Uni (H).

On a five-game losing streak, Bendigo still have four games to come in the final ten days including trips to Townsville and Adelaide. They need three wins to get off the bottom of the ladder as they do not own the season series against the Caps after a loss last weekend.