A late flurry of goals from the Melbourne Vixens has given them a four-goal buffer over the Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic in the ANZ Championship grand final in Melbourne.
In front of a loud sell-out crowd of 9,400 at Hisense Arena in Melbourne, the hosts have taken a 22-18 lead to halftime.
Building on an 8-7 advantage at the quarter break, the Vixens turned the screws, with the visitors' midcourt put under plenty of pressure.
The hosts hit a four-goal lead though a Casey Williams intercept helped the Magic to get back within one.
Vixens goal attack Tegan Caldwell missed two consecutive shots and the visitors levelled the game at 15-15 through Irene van Dyk.
Another Caldwell miss had the Magic off the hook but then goal shoot Karyn Howarth got a hand in the way and helped the hosts win back possession and a two-goal lead.
Magic goal keep Leana de Bruin performed well in picking up four rebounds in the second quarter, but a late burst from the hosts got them into a good position.
Both teams' shooting was suspect, but the Vixens put up 20 shots in the second quarter, netting 14, compared with the Magic's 11/13.
The hosts have shot 22 from 33 in the first half and the visitors 18 from 22, with van Dyk 10 from 10.
The Magic have turned the ball over 11 times to the Vixens' seven.
- © Fairfax NZ News