The Kilsyth Lady Cobras were eliminated from the 2018 SEABL postseason on Saturday night, losing to a red-hot Bendigo Braves team at home, 93-64.
With team MVP Steph Blicavs away with Australian Opals duties, the Lady Cobras struggled to keep pace with Bendigo’s high-octane offence, with a third quarter explosion by the Braves proving to be the difference in this one. After Bendigo closed the second quarter with four quick points to take a 10 point lead into halftime, the floodgates opened in the third period, with the Braves erupting for a 19-4 run to start the period to blow the game wide open.
And the Lady Cobras couldn’t recover, going ice-cold from the field over the final 20 minutes of play to fall just short of a Grand Final berth for the second consecutive season.
“It was a disappointing way to end the season,” Lady Cobras head coach Sam Woosnam said.
“When it comes down to it if you can’t make shots you don’t win games.”
Kilsyth shot just 33 percent from the field in the second half, while the Braves seemingly could not miss, shooting a blistering 20-for-30 from the field over the final two quarters to run away with the win. The Lady Cobras cold streak was a tough one for Woosnam and co. to swallow, having put themselves in a position to win early on before cooling off late.
“I felt we did a great job in the first quarter and first half,” Woosnam said.
“We followed the scout with only a few defensive lapses and came out of halftime and started well.
“But after a couple of minutes they really turned it on and shot the ball extremely well. We couldn’t covert offensively and that was the story for the remainder of the game.”
Jasmine Gill led Kilsyth with a team-high 14 points, Hope Terdich was solid off the bench, finishing with 12 points and seven rebounds, while Chelsea D’Angelo and Angela Beadle chipped in with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Without their leading scorer in Blicavs, the Lady Cobras simply could not match the offensive firepower of Bendigo on Saturday in a Finals matchup Woosnam had hoped would take place one week later.
After steamrolling through the regular season en-route to a perfect 20-0 record, the Braves were stunned at home by Launceston in their first round Final, resulting in a Bendigo having to play in a Preliminary Final on the road. That meant the league’s top two regular season teams battled it out one week early, and without Blicavs there to make the big plays, the shorthanded Lady Cobras were unable to keep pace with an impressive Bendigo team.
“Bendigo did us no favours by losing their first round final,” Woosnam added.
“We knew we would be without our MVP (Blicavs) for the Preliminary Final and certainly didn’t expect to meet Bendigo before the Championship Game.”
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