Fire win Game 1 of the Grand-Final series

March 19, 2023 | Townsville Fire news

The JCU Townsville Fire will head to Melbourne with one game advantage over the Flyers following a dominant display in the opening game of the grand final series. All bar a few spectators were able to enjoy a nerve free night of entrainment, with the home team turning in a terrific performance from start to finish, in front of club record crowd attendance of 3717. Courtney Woods was ecstatic everything went to script.

“Obviously playing in front of that many people it was absolutely incredible. Nearly 4000 is amazing! And I’m glad we could give them a 30 point win and thank them for coming out.”

The guard finished with 11 points from 14 minutes of action, while Shyla Heal hitting her first shot straight after stepping onto the floor, was a sign of what was to come from the late season recruit. She scored a game high 23 points, half of the hosts huge total off the bench, compared to 14 from Southside’s non-starters. The significant difference didn’t surprise Shannon Seebohm, who’s spoilt for choice.

“I really am and that’s the great thing with our team, and when they’re called on they’re ready, and everyone is happy for everyone else’s success, so yeah we got some great contribution off the bench and hopefully we get that again.”

He sat Tianna Hawkins down for the first the first time in the playoffs, after her 20 point haul helped wrap up the 94-63 blowout by the end of the third quarter. The American eventually accepted his decision.

“I didn’t know what to do, I had to stand up for a little bit. I looked at Shannon and I was like hey what’s going on, but he was like oh it’s fine and I looked up at the scoreboard and I was like oh ok, I got you.”

The Fire’s fifteenth consecutive win was the biggest in their streak so far, but the coach is adamant securing a sixteenth straight victory and the championship on Wednesday won’t be as easy.

“We’re really happy to have got game one, obviously anything can happen in a finals series. They’re a great team, Cheryl’s a great coach and they’ve got some stars, so I’m sure they’ll regroup and come firing out in game 2.”

The Minor Premiers will fly out of Townsville on Tuesday, Woody won’t be travelling with her entourage though.

“Not only are the fans coming out to the games, nearly everywhere we go people are stopping us and saying go the Fire, all the businesses are supporting us. I feel like a bit of a celebrity walking around town because there are that many supporters, it’s incredible!