Glasgow Rocks Senior Women made a successful start to their National League campaign, with a 19 point victory over St Mirren on Sunday afternoon.
Both sides started off in energetic fashion and the game was close, but the Rocks began to settle and take control early with Siobhan Moore dominating inside. She scored 9 of her 24 points in the first period, giving her team an early 9 point cushion over the visitors.
St Mirren’s zone defence was routinely exposed by the Rocks, who played with patience and moved the ball well enough to find gaps and knock down the shots.
From there the defending National League champs were never really threatened and they raced out to a 16 point lead at the end of the first half.
But St Mirren managed to gain a bit of confidence in the third period, slowing the Rocks down somewhat by changing to a man defence. The change worked as the visiting side marginally won the third period 17 – 15.
The Rocks also began to pick up a lot of fouls and St Mirren looked inside to forward Rosie Barr to draw more. It was a tactic that paid off, as Ailidh Hood went early in the fourth period. She was then followed by Siobhan Moore, who fouled out with 5:39 remaining and the Rocks up 62 – 51. Both players were forced to take in the rest of the action from the bench.
Fouls were a big concern for Rocks coach Shirley Birch. She said:
“I think we need to adapt to the new refereeing calls that are getting made. There was a lot of fouls, a lot of our players were on four fouls at the end of the game. We were a bit tight and tense.”
Despite losing the inside presence of Siobhan, the Rocks managed to hold onto the lead for the rest of the fourth period. Rona Corkindale provided most of the scoring punch, she finished the game with 24 points, and the Rocks sealed a 75 – 56 win.
Although it was a comfortable victory for the Rocks overall, Shirley insisted her team has to improve. She said:
“We have a bit of work to do on the defensive end, but we performed well enough and it’s good enough for our first game. But we can do better.”
Next up for the Lady Rocks is a clash with Falkirk Fury at St Maurice’s High School, on Sunday 23rd September.
Starting 5 for Glasgow: Mairi MacNeil, Nadele Strain, Rona Corkindale, Ailidh Hood, Toni Carvill
Starting 5 for St Mirren: Rebecca Cumming, Gemma Black, Robin Lewis, Lauren McKinlay, Katie Fergus
MVP: Siobhan Moore with 24 points
HOT: With time expiring on the shot clock in the fourth period, the ball was in the hands of Rona Corkindale at the top of the key. She managed to take her player off the dribble and make the off-balance shot, whilst drawing a foul on St Mirren’s Gemma Black. After making the difficult shot, she missed the free throw
NOT: Foul situation
Game Notes: The Rocks played in white and St Mirren wore black… only two players for the Rocks scored in double figures, Rona Corkindale and Siobhan Moore…Basketball Scotland Development Officer David Evans predicted the 19 point win.
Written by MICHAEL DOTT / photo: Colin Ross Smith