Lynx outlast Boomers in overtime thriller
THE 2021/22 season of the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) season rolled on over the weekend, with some big clashes taking place around Australia for Round 10. One of these was the matchup between the Melbourne Boomers and the Perth Lynx at the Gippsland Regional Indoor Sports Stadium on Sunday night. Both teams are enjoying strong starts to their respective seasons, so this was slated to be a blockbuster clash, and it certainly lived up to these expectations. It was a tense affair throughout the entire regular period, with neither side able to gain ascendancy in this time. By the time the fourth quarter concluded, the two teams could not be separated, with the match heading into overtime, where the Lynx were able to emerge victorious to the tune of five points.
The match opened with the two sides unable to get their offence rolling in the first few minutes of the term. The Lynx looked to make a bit of a run halfway through the period, as they gained a slight edge over their opponents on the scoreboard. However, the Boomers were able to keep themselves in the contest and prevent Perth from breaking away, sinking some big shots towards the end of the term. A late jump shot to Tiffany Mitchell gave the Boomers a two-point lead at the first break, with the match living up to the expectations of a close affair early on, keeping viewers entertained.
The close fashion of the match continued into the second period, but this time both sides were able to lift their offensive outputs from the first term. The Boomers were able to keep their opponents at bay for the first half of the term, before the Lynx fought back to steal the lead as the time progressed. Import guard Jackie Young was a big reason for this, providing a reliable avenue to score as she not only scored her own baskets, but was vital in creating opportunities for her teammates. By the time the buzzer sounded to mark half time, the Lynx had erased the deficit from the previous break and proceedings were tied heading into the second half.
Once again, the two teams played out yet another extremely close term, with neither side able to build a meaningful lead over the other. The lead changed hands multiple times, with both squads fighting tooth and nail for each possession. The second half of the quarter saw the Lynx have a slight advantage over their opponents, but could not turn this into a substantial lead, with the margin always sitting at three points or less. A jumpshot from Young found the bottom of the net late in the term, giving the Lynx a two-point lead over the Boomers, setting up a thrilling final term.
The final period of regular time saw the Boomers look to turn things around, quickly stealing the lead off the Lynx. However, much like their opponents in the previous term, they could not turn this into a match-winning margin, with Perth always staying in arms’ length of their opponents. Things looked good for Melbourne as they took a three-point lead into the final 10 seconds of play, but a clutch three-pointer from Alex Sharp tied things up and sent the match into extra time.
The Lynx were finally able to get some momentum going in extra time, getting a fair lead on their opponents in this time. The duo of Young and Lauren Scherf were massive in driving this offensive push, as the Lynx finally got a lead that was substantial enough to put their opponents under some pressure. By the time Perth were able to build a five-point lead, things looked over for the Boomers, as they could not match the output of their opponents in overtime.
CLOSING THOUGHTS …
For the victors, there were none better than Young and Scherf, both of whom were vital in driving their side to victory. Young finished with 26 points, eight rebounds and six assists in a true point guard’s performance, stuffing the stat sheet in all three key categories. Scherf was a monster in the paint, racking up a huge double-double of 19 points and 18 rebounds as she controlled the skies with ease. For the Boomers, Lindsay Allen fought hard to keep her side in the contest with 17 points as she nearly dragged Melbourne over the line.