THE Joondalup Wolves stormed past the East Perth Eagles in the National Basketball League (NBL)1 West Women’s on the weekend, largely thanks to a massive offensive showing from Robbi Ryan, who dominated with ball in hand.
It was a game that the Wolves were expected to win, given the contrast in standings between the two sides. The contest ended up panning out as expected, with Joondalup proving a class above as the Eagles were blown away across the span of four quarters and fell with the final score of 105-70.
It was the Wolves’ 13th win of the season, as they remain unbeaten after as many outings. They will be extremely tough to be stop moving forward, and Saturday evening’s win at Herb Graham Recreation Centre emphasised how damaging they can be on on any given night. On the other hand, the Eagles sustained their 10th loss from 13 outings, and are now going to seriously struggle to make finals come season’s end.
Far and away the best player on the court proved to be Joondalup’s Ryan, who dominated the game and certainly put her stamp on the contest. She was a beast on the offensive end, leading all scorers and proving too much for the East Perth defence. Ryan was also able affect the rebounding battle in a big way, topping the count in this category too. She was reflective of her side’s dominance throughout the game and produced a terrific statline.
Robbi Ryan vs. Eagles – 39 points, 14 rebounds, two steals
Ryan’s offensive output was a class above her peers on the court, seemingly creating something on every possession. She was a machine both inside and outside the three-point line and displayed an ability to find the bottom of the net in a number of ways.
Inside the arc is where she put up most of her shots, with 14 of her 22 field goal attempts coming from this area. As she showed internationally at Arizona State in previous years, Ryan could punish the opposition’s poor interior defence with a number of strong drives to the hoop, which often resulted in two points.
Ryan also cashed in from downtown, nailing five threes on just eight attempts from this range. It was a strong display of her offensive arsenal, and it made life extremely difficult for the offence to guard her. If they committed to guarding Ryan from behind the arc, she would blow by and score inside, but if they left her open, she would drain the three more often than not.
To add another string to her bow, Ryan was the best rebounder on the court as well, pulling down a game-high 14. The most important factor of that number is the fact that five came on the offensive end, showing how ruthless she could be when the ball was in the air.