Flames fire up with QBL finals in sight
THE Townsville Flames are warming up for their QBL finals charge after taking down the Logan Thunder 89- 60 at Townsville Basketball Stadium on Saturday night.
The Flames were coming off their first home loss of the season to Gladstone last weekend, but they were clinical against the Thunder as they improved their record to 9- 5.
WNBL stars Darcee Garbin ( 23 points, 9 rebounds) and Mia Murray ( 13 points, 10 rebounds) set the tone for the Flames and coach Mike StMaurice felt it was a good team performance.
“Everyone knows Darcee’s a player that we rely on and other teams key in on her, but despite all the attention she attracted she was still scoring and facilitating,” St- Maurice said.
“Mia Murray has been battling that back injury all year, but I thought she showed some great leadership for us. We had a rough trot the week be- fore against Gladstone and that took away our unbeaten record at home, so we wanted to prove we belong with the top teams.”
The Flames will round out the regular season with a tough southeast Queensland triple- header this weekend against the USC Rip City, Sunshine Coast Phoenix, and Brisbane Capitals.
It’s an exhausting road trip heading into the finals, but St- Maurice was confident Townsville had a strong enough squad to handle the workload of three games in three days.
“I said a tthe beginning of year we’re one of the deepest teams in the league and triple- headers are the time when we can back up that claim,” he said. “We’re comfortable with the group we’re taking away being able to match it with anyone. We’ll only travel with nine on Friday, but we’ll have the full group of 10 by Saturday, so our goal is to go 3- 0.
“We’re a process- driven team and we know the effort that we put in at training bears fruits on the weekend.
“We’ve been building towards being a good team all year.”
The Townsville Heat still have a shot to claim the men’s minor premiership after notching their fifthstraight win against the Logan Thunder 100- 75.
Josh Wilcher, Justin Baker, and Peter Crawford all scored 17 points in a well- rounded performance from the home side as they dominated every quarter.
The win sees Townsville move to an 11- 3 record ahead of this weekend’s triple- header, setting up a showdown with the Brisbane Capitals ( 12- 3) on Sunday which could decide top spot.