Horror second quarter cripples Tactix in Auckland
One dreadful quarter has again cost the Tactix any chance of an upset victory.
The red-and-blacks were beaten 65-62 by the Northern Mystics in Auckland tonight with an error-ridden second quarter the architect of their demise.
In the opening quarter, the Tactix made a lively start to the game, cashing in off the Mystics' turnovers to take a 20-14 lead into the first break.
It was a brilliant start from the Tactix, who converted turnover ball and were sharp on attack. Midcourters Keshia Grant and Jade Clarke were able to deliver some beautiful passes into the shooting end. Skipper Anna Thompson was busy at goal attack, alongside Malawi international Mwai Kumwenda, with the pair flawless in the first quarter.
Inconsistency has plagued the Tactix this season and mistakes crept into their play in the second term. The Mystics fought their way back into the contest, winning the term 20-11 to build a three-goal halftime advantage.
Mystics' coach Debbie Fuller switched around her defensive end to start the second quarter in an effort to stem the Tactix' attack.
Impressive rookie Temalisi Fakahokotau was injected on at goal keep and Julie Corletto pushed forward to wing defence. Former Silver Fern Temepara Bailey, who answered an SOS over the weekend to help the Mystics' injury depleted midcourt, was also inserted into the game during the second quarter.
The Mystics took advantage of turnovers from the Tactix going on an 8-0 run to snatch the lead
Little separated the teams during the second half with the Tactix keeping themselves in the contest through their slick attack play and some hard-fought turnovers.Mystics' shooter Cathrine Latu, who had not missed a goal in her previous two games, was again dominant under the hoop.
She finally missed an attempt in the third quarter, ending her streak of 121 consecutive goals.The Tactix locked up the scores late in the contest, but were unable to get the break they needed on defence.
When Zoe Walker was called for held ball in the dying stages, the Mystics converted to go up by two goals and seal the result.
Aside from their disappointing second quarter, the Tactix will draw a lot of positives from the game. Kumwenda again starred with 43/44 goals and showed some brilliant athleticism and elevation.
Thompson had one of her best games of the season and looks to have made the goal attack bib her own. Grant was also steady at wing attack, getting through a power of work.
Tactix defender Jess Moulds left the court in the second quarter with a suspected left Achilles injury and did not return. The Mystics will also be sweating on star defender Anna Harrison, who was forced off late in the game with a calf injury.