Me­te­o­rettes fi­nals fo­cused

Mackay looks to spark lad­der rise on the road

Daily Mercury - - SPORT - DANIEL MCKEN­ZIE daniel.mcken­zie@dai­ly­mer­cury.com.au

BAS­KET­BALL: The Me­te­o­rettes are con­fi­dent of turn­ing their for­tunes around and spark­ing a run up the Queens­land Bas­ket­ball League lad­der on the road this week­end.

Fresh off a bye fol­low­ing a four point loss to Rock­hamp­ton, things don’t get any eas­ier for the Me­te­o­rettes on the road against QBL new­com­ers the North Gold Coast Sea­hawks (tonight), the Bris­bane Cap­i­tals on Satur­day and top-five side the South­ern Dis­tricts Spar­tans on Sun­day.

Com­ing off a string of tight losses, Mackay Bas­ket­ball busi­ness devel­op­ment man­ager Wade Re­bet­zke said elim­i­nat­ing de­fen­sive lapses could see the Me­te­o­rettes turn their for­tunes around, start­ing against the Sea­hawks tonight.

“It’s a tough trip for the girls, North Gold Coast, Bris­bane and the Spar­tans have all been play­ing good bas­ket­ball. The Spar­tans beat (then) un­de­feated Townsville by 30 on the road last week­end, so they’ve got a fan­tas­tic group, but North Gold Coast has been a re­ally tough all sea­son as a new team and (coach Ian Haughton) is re­ally look­ing for­ward to see­ing how we match up against those guys,” he said.

“We’re go­ing down with the mind­set that we want to get a cou­ple of wins, and we’re right there, it’s just about putting four quar­ters to­gether.

“We’ve tended to have lapses in games where we go to sleep for eight min­utes then it’s a 10 point game... so the girls need to put 40 min­utes to­gether and ex­e­cute the game plan and that’s what’s let us down (this) sea­son.”

While the side sits ninth on the QBL lad­der with three wins from their seven games, Re­bet­zke be­lieves the Me­te­o­rettes are build­ing chem­istry and lead­er­ship as the sea­son pro­gresses.

With a new-look side in 2018, Re­bet­zke said the Me­te­o­rettes were on track and not “far away” from con­vert­ing losses into wins.

“What a lot of peo­ple don’t re­alise is we’ve got a whole new start­ing five and with­out Jill Haughton (for­mer star), we’ve had to find new ways to find lead­er­ship,” he said.

“That’s taken time, but I’ve said from the start we’d be play­ing our best from mid to end of the sea­son and I think that can start this week­end.

“It’s a re­ally im­por­tant trip, and if we can grab two to three wins, the girls can set them­selves up for the rest of the sea­son and make a run at the play­offs.”

Re­gard­less of the re­sults, Re­bet­zke said the Me­te­o­rettes wouldn’t write the sea­son off and would re­main fo­cussed on mak­ing an im­pact in the post sea­son.

“It’s way too early for that (write off)... you play for wins no mat­ter what,” he said.

“We still firmly be­lieve we’re play-offs bound and this week­end is the start of that process and that comes (tonight).

“You knock a team off above you, you move up. We’ve got that op­por­tu­nity this week­end (against) teams above us, so if we do a good job we can start to look at the eight.

“I know the girls have got that at­ti­tude.”

Photo: Daniel McKen­zie

KEY ROLE: Mackay Me­te­o­rettes’ Amer­i­can im­port Mia Loyd will be a key for her side.

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