The first Queensland derby of the year certainly didn’t disappoint, with the Lorna Jane Queensland Firebirds being edged out in the last quarter by the Sunshine Coast Lightning 40 -36.
The Firebirds had a blistering start to the game, notching up five goals before the Lightning could get on the board.
Shooters Romelda Aiken and Gretel Tippett showed why they are one of the most formidable attacking ends in the competition, looking comfortable and in control from the get-go.
The 12-8 lead didn’t worry the Lightning though as they warmed to the task, pulling back the deficit to go into half time 19-18.
The third quarter saw a fresh approach from the Firebirds, with the ever-versatile Gabi Simpson stepping in for a run at centre, Hinchliffe moving to wing defence and Cassidy into wing attack.
The Australian Diamond vice-captain provided excellent strength in defence troubling the Lightning mid-court with her trademark speed and footwork.
With the third quarter wrapping at nine a piece the game was up for the taking.
Turnovers proved costly for the Firebirds who couldn’t quite hold on in the end, Lightning shooter Peace Proscovia putting in a dominant 90% shooting display getting the Sunshine Coast over the line.
The Firebirds will come up against a new look Adelaide Thunderbirds side also itching for their first win of the pre-season tournament.
Session three of the #TeamGirls Cup is underway, the Firebirds will take to the court this evening at 8pm local time.
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