After a long break, Sunday evening saw the Nottingham Wildcats host the Newcastle Eagles for their WBBL Championship fixture with the Eagles winning against the Nottingham Wildcats 67- 47.
The Eagles took control of the game early, building a 24-point lead in the first half.
Despite a much improved second-half effort from the Wildcats in which they won both the final quarters, the damage had already been done.
Antoinette Lewis had 18 points and 8 rebounds, whilst Marina Fernandez Pardo added 14 points and six rebounds.
The Wildcats got 14 points and 13 rebounds from Kennedy Nicholas and Kayla Shaw added 10 points and six assists.
Lewis opened the scoring for Newcastle with a hook shot. However, neither team managed to muster much scoring in the first five minutes – until the Eagles put together an 11-0 run to close out the quarter. Lewis had her way with seven points total.
In the second Courtney Clasen connected from downtown giving Newcastle a 14-point lead.
Macy Cook stopped any further momentum scoring inside plus the foul, calmly sinking the free throw.
However, Lewis and Maggie Justinak sparked another 12-0 run – capped off by Rachael Bland’s corner three-pointer.
With Natalie Charity scoring for Nottingham, Lewis answered right back with another triple – giving the Eagles a 24-point lead.
Nottingham emerged in the second half rejuvenated.
They connected on their first three baskets, scoring eight straight points and trimming the lead to 18.
The Eagles were able to keep finding easy scores with Justinak connecting on a triple and Fernandez Pardo scoring inside.
In the fourth, Newcastle clung to their lead – with Clasen, Lewis and Chloe Gaynor coming up with big defensive stops. Bland’s three-pointer pushed the lead to 24.
However, Nottingham came back to within 13 points through five points from Imani Whittington. Nicholas and Shaw also added a pair of baskets each.
Fernandez- Pardo locked in and closed out the game with five unanswered points, giving the Eagles the victory.
The win moves Newcastle to within two points of the Sheffield Sharks who currently hold the 5th spot in the table. The Wildcats remain in 10th place.
Nottingham Wildcats 47 – 67 Newcastle Eagles
(6-15, 5-29, 15-12, 21-20)
(Wildcats – Nicholas 14, Shaw 10, Whittington 8; Eagles – Lewis 18, Fernandez Pardo 14, Justinak 11)
Report Source: WBBL