Power outclassed by accurate Meteorettes
BASKETBALL: Mackay Meteorettes showed why they are one of the teams to beat in the women's QBL after a clinical 87-49 win against McDonald's Gladstone Port City Power on Sutarday night.
The visitors won 87-49.
Full Ray Cooper interview:
Despite the best efforts of Kayla Kiriau with 19 points and centre Cassie Rochel (10 points) in their first games for their new club, the Meteorettes had too many options inside and outside the paint.
Micaela Cocks (21 points) was superb as was Nadeen Payne who collected 16.
The Power were well and truly in the hunt in the first quarter, only being down 20-17, but Mackay showed their might in the second.
"We came out kind of a little bit relaxed and Mackay picked up the tempo a fair bit as well so we are not really used to that just yet as a group," Power coach Ray Cooper said of the second quarter.
Mackay's Jaye Willis and Payne were instrumental in an 11-0 burst as the Meteorettes exploded to blow the game open to lead 42-18.
There was a mini- renaissance from the hosts and they closed the margin to within 20 points.
The absence of Rochel (three fouls at that stage) was massive and Mackay capitalised with their size superiority.
Kiriau was doing all she could and carried the ball with aplomb and she is a fair replacement for Maddy Willey.
Veteran Charmiane Mellars tried valiantly with nine points despite being a little rusty with her shooting.
Full Carl Teske interview:
She will be much better for the run in coming matches and Gladstone will be a lot more powerful with a fit and firing Mellars inside the paint to help Rochel.
Swift ball movement in transition was the Meteorettes' trademark as Payne gunned down another triple.
Tahnee Guinea, in her return to the court for the Power, returned the favour.
Gladstone can take something away with the first and final quarters during which both teams shared 19 points.
It means the Power can match it, but it's a question of maintaining the intensity throughout the whole duration of a game.
And that's something Cooper said he will be focusing on.
"We take away a couple of quarters there and it is disappointing a 40-point loss, but at the end of the day we come around with knowing the girls are getting up each other and getting into each other, we all stay on the same page," he said.
"It's a work in progress, our first game of the season, our first game together and it was really tough to play against a team like that in the first round."
Cooper was impressed with Kiriau and Rochel and he got a good gauge of his players' capabilities as a whole.
"It's good to see out of that game what everyone can do and and in training we can only see a little bit, but not as much as you see in an actual game."
Mellars contemplated retirement and Cooper was pleased she decided to continue.
"She's the captain for us and leads by example with her effort and she doesn't give up, keeps working and is a great mentor for all the girls," Cooper said.
Meteorettes' mentor Carl Teske was a proud coach especially after Mackay rolled Rockhampton the previous night.
"We're happy, two wins on the Central Queensland swing and I don't think many teams get away with that," Teske said.
"We know that Gladstone have a young team and are building for the future and we have a lot of WNBL experience."
Teske said experience was a telling factor.