Supercats extinguish Energy in game three

ECSTASY turned to agony in the span of 24 hours for Latrobe City Energy’s BigV division one women when they bowed out of the finals series yesterday.

Needing to win twice on the road to Geelong to take out its best of three semi-final series and qualify for the grand final, the Energy levelled the ledger 1-1 on Saturday but could not repeat the feat in yesterday’s deciding match.

After taking Saturday’s must-win clash 66-62 over the Supercats, the Energy lost by the same margin in game three to come up just a couple of buckets short of a chicken dinner.

Having lost its home final the week prior Energy faced the tough prospect of stealing two wins on the road against a side which finished one spot above it on the ladder.

Despite the enormity of the task at hand the visitor began the odyssey on the right foot with a four point win in game two.

The Energy led 39-34 at half-time but had to come from behind in the fourth quarter after Geelong snuck out to a two point advantage by the final change.

A 15-9 fourth quarter was enough to get Energy across the line and force a deciding rubber.

Team leaders Shanice Steenholdt (21 points, 18 rebounds, three blocks) and Tanarly Hood (17 points, three steals) were the architects on the offensive end, with help from young gun Chelsea D’Angelo (12 points, five rebounds) and a rotating cast of Energy stars.

With momentum in their corner the Energy appeared steeled to grind out a second successive win yesterday after a dominant opening quarter in the all-important qualifying match.

The Energy darted away to an 18-7 lead by the first change, shooting hot from three point territory, before the host staged a revival in the second term.

Geelong stormed back into contention, and within a point of the Energy by half-time, with a 26-16 second quarter effort.

It was even keel in the third, which ended at 14 points apiece, leaving Latrobe City with a one point lead and as many quarters left to hold on.

The task proved too much as Geelong upped its defensive pressure and forced Energy into some difficult shots, resulting in a field goal percentage of 26 for the final quarter, as the Supercats clawed out a four point victory.

Steenholdt played a full 40 minutes for a game high return of 23 points, 18 rebounds and three blocks, Hood hit 13 points while Alysha Marcucci, Laura Joyce and D’Angelo cropped up for contributions.

Energy curtailed danger player Candice Rogers reasonably well, limiting the Geelong star to 17 points and 18 rebounds, but the Supercats’ depth off the bench proved the difference at the end of an exhausting double-header.