Fiebich finishes with firey finals performance
OVER the weekend, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 Finals took place, with the Warwick Senators taking home the Women’s title after dominating their fixture and outperforming each opponent they were faced with.
One of the biggest factors in the not only the deciding match, but their championship run as a whole was Leonie Fiebich, producing big numbers across the weekend.
Playing in the front court, she was one of the most damaging players across the NBL1 West Women’s season with averages of 19.77 points and 12 rebounds on the year, before claiming the grand final MVP in the decider and heading into the National finals in red-hot form.
After big performances against the Bearcats (20 points, 14 rebounds, six steals) and the Spartans (22 points, 13 rebounds, three steals), Riebich was one of the players to watch coming into the league’s decider, and she did not disappoint.
Warwick Senators (83) def. Ringwood Hawks (75)
Leonie Fiebich – 16 points, 18 rebounds, seven assists
With a bit more attention from the defence, Fiebich had to act as more of a facilitator, taking full advantage of the opposition overcommitting to defending her and finding wide open teammates on the perimeter.
With the Hawks doing their best to prevent her from getting the ball, it took the German import a while to get on the scorers’ list, but she was still impacting the contest with some high-flying rebounds. Fiebich was also using her smarts to make that extra pass and allow her fellow Senators to nail the wide open shot. There was a bit of an offensive drought from both sides, with no points scored for just under three minutes, before Fiebich nailed a free throw to get the ball rolling again. Despite only registering one point for the term, it was her work on the boards that had the biggest impact, pulling down seven rebounds in the opening term alone.
FIebich kicked off the second term with a nice steal, reading the opposition play and creating a fastbreak, on which she was able to draw a foul. The following play, she found teammate Chloe Forster open behind the arc, with her three-pointer finding the bottom of the basket. Her rebounding efforts never slowed down, and she finally got reward for effort with a nice back cut resulting in a wide-open layup, her first field goal of the match. Fiebich’s passing abilities kicked in to close out the second term, with four dimes over the span of just three minutes, as her teammates worked hard around the perimeter and were rewarded with some nice dishes. Liebich nailed a couple of buckets as well, and helped her team take a 12-point advantage into the main break.
Fiebich got in a bit of foul trouble to start the third term, committing two in 20 seconds as the Hawks looked to make their charge. By the five-minute mark of the quarter, she had already surpassed 10 rebounds, and was well on her way to a double-double. To close out the period, Fiebich got involved on the scoring end, nailing a three-pointer in the final minute of the game to stretch Warwick’s lead out to seven points heading into the fourth.
With the result still up for grabs, her willingness to fly for boards was crucial in the Senators holding on to their lead. Liebich nailed back to back buckets with six minutes left on the clock, both coming from inside the paint. She continued to chase down the boards until the last second, finishing with a whopping statline and proving to be a very deserving winner of the MVP award.