Taking down the Huskies and Tornadoes by a combined 72 points, the Cobras continued their surge towards a top-four finish, moving to within a game of Knox for third place in the NBL1 standings. Now winners of 11 of their last 12 games, the Cobras laser-focus continued on Friday and Saturday, riding an incredible performance by Lauren Nicholson on Friday and across-the-board contributions on Saturday to sweep the once feared ‘Tassie Double.’
“It’s alway a pleasure to get the clean sweep in Tassie,” Cobras head coach Sam Woosnam said.
“The girls really applied themselves to the task of getting both wins so it was great to see real locked-in focus on the road.
“We were in complete control from start to finish against Hobart, and against Launceston, they pushed us early on but we regrouped and put together a great second half. We had to adjust to their small ball but once we did we were able to punish them inside.”
It was the Lauren Nicholson on Friday night, with the superstar guard erupting for a season-high 40 points in just 30 minutes as the Cobras recorded a dominant 102-52 victory over the Huskies.
Nicholson was simply unstoppable, dropping 28 points in the first half alone as the Cobras built an insurmountable 21 point half time lead. Last year’s SEABL MVP shot 13-21 from the field on Friday, including a sizzling 7-for-10 performance from beyond the arc, while fellow starters Klara Wischer (15 points, six rebounds, five assists) and Sarah Boothe (11 points, six rebounds) were also impressive in the win.
It was more of the same on Saturday night, with the Cobras turning it on in the second half against Launceston to record an 85-63 win over the Tornadoes. Leading by just six at the half as they tried to shake the pesky Tornadoes and their small-ball approach, the Cobras began to pound the rock inside to start the second half, with their size proving too much for the Tornadoes to match down low as they cruised to their second victory in as many nights.
Kara Tessari had the hot hand on Saturday night, draining four triples en-route to a game-high 20 points and five assists, Nicholson added 19 points to cap a stellar individual weekend. Taylor Mathers continued her outstanding play off the bench of late, recording 10 points and seven rebounds in just 14 minutes; Alison Downie finished with nine points and 10 rebounds; Wischer (eight rebounds) and Boothe chipped-in with eight points apiece; and Alison Downie (nine rebounds) and Clare Camac (seven points) provided a spark with the second unit.
Woosnam was thrilled with the contributions she received from the Cobras ten-woman roster, with depth a key to navigating the difficult southern road trip. And now with a chance to move back into top-four position this weekend with just three games remaining, Woosnam is hoping that the Cobras depth serves them well once again as they play at Nunawading on Saturday before returning home to host Frankston on Sunday.
“We were able to get great contributions from all ten girls, which is what you need during a difficult road trip,” Woosnam said.
“We still want a top-four finish, and we’re looking forward to a rematch with Nunawading after putting in a sub-par performance against them a few weeks ago.”
The Cobras head to Nunawading on Saturday to take on the Spectres at 5.30pm, rounding out their doubleheader weekend on Sunday when they square-off against the Frankston Blues at home.
Sunday’s showdown with the Blues will see the Cobras wearing their limited edition jerseys featuring Indigenous artwork, and the Djirri Djirri dance group perform a pair of dances as part of the NBL1’s Indigenous Round. The Women tip-off proceedings at 12pm, with the Men to follow at 2pm.
The NBL1 Cobra Men have split their Tasmanian road doubleheader, falling to the Hobart Huskies on Friday before gutting out a gritty win over the NW Tasmania Thunder on Saturday. 📺 @nwthunder 🆚 @KilsythCobras Mens Highlights #NBL1 pic.twitter.com/qc9rsOFQ2J — NBL1 (@NBL1HQ) July 6, 2019 Again without a number of key players – Sean Macdonald
The NBL1 Cobras will be rocking special edition, Indigenous artwork inspired jerseys this Sunday when they play host to the Frankston Blues to highlight the NBL1’s Indigenous Round. The NBL1 celebrates Indigenous Round this week to recognise the important role played by Indigenous Australians in the national basketball community. A number of teams –