Four Grand Finalists have been decided for Divisions 5-8 of the 2014 DOOLEYS State League follow today’s (Saturday 30 August) Semi Finals at the Anne Clark Centre.
Winners of each Major Semi Final advances directly to the Grand Final while the loser players the winner of the Minor Semi Final in next Saturday’s (6 September) Preliminary Finals to determine which team will claim the final spot in each decider.
Major Semi Final: Blue Mountains 51 def Bankstown City 45
Blue Mountains had the edge early in the first quarter before Bankstown City hit the front with six minutes to play in the term, holding on to lead 13-12 at the first break. Blue Mountains was quick to level in the second quarter and soon got away to a two-goal lead but neither team was able to gain further ascendency, the buffer still two at halftime, 28-26 to Blue Mountains.
After an intense third quarter where the teams were still only separated by two goals, 38-36, Blue Mountains broke away in the fourth quarter on the back of some great full court defence with their shooters converting the extra ball to lead by as many as 10 goals. Bankstown City fought back to get within seven at the final whistle but Blue Mountains had already booked their place in the decider.
Minor Semi Final: Hills District 60 CSNA/Sydney Uni 53
Hills District scored the opening five goals of the game and it took some time for CSNA/Sydney Uni to settle in once they added to the scoreboard, trailing Hills 17-9 at the first break. It was a tighter contest in the second quarter, but Hills District had a strong target in the shooting circle, helping them stretch their lead to 15 at halftime, 34-19.
CSNA/Sydney Uni started to make some inroads in the third quarter, closing the gap to nine goals at the final break, 45-36. They lifted their intensity again in the fourth quarter as they made their final push, but Hills District remained composed and held off CSNA/Sydney Uni to win by seven goals, 60-53.
Major Semi Final: Illawarra 33 def Blacktown City 31
Illawarra’s strong defensive rebounding allowed them to get away to an early lead in a low-scoring first quarter, 10-6. It was a grinding affair in the second quarter before Blacktown City broke through in the final minutes, closing the term on a scoring run to level at 14 goals apiece then take the lead for the first time, ahead by two goals at halftime, 16-14.
Illawarra’s shooters traded bibs for the third quarter and the change seemed to pay dividends with Illawarra stealing back the lead to hold a 27-23 advantage at the final break. Blacktown City stormed home in the final minutes, closing within one goal with less than two minutes remaining but were unable to add to their tally, Illawarra victors by two goals, 33-31.
Minor Semi Final: Ku-ring-gai 52 def Randwick 43
It was a close tussle in the opening minutes before Ku-ring-gai raced away to lead by nine at the first break, 19-10. Randwick started to chip away at the margin in the second quarter, closing within two goals but the Ku-ring-gai goal keeper twice denied them with intercepts in the final minute of the term to allow her team a three-goal buffer at halftime, 29-26.
It was an enthralling third quarter with neither team giving an inch, the margin just two goals at the final break, 37-35. Ku-ring-gai stole the momentum again in the final quarter with fresh legs in the defence end and steady play, edging away to win their place in the Preliminary Final with a nine-goal victory.
Major Semi Final: Campbelltown 42 def CSNA/Sydney Uni 28
Campbelltown scored first but it was CSNA/Sydney Uni who claimed a narrow 8-6 lead at the first break. Campbelltown got back on top in the second quarter, holding off CSNA/Sydney Uni’s last attempt at goal to lead by seven goals, 19-12 at halftime.
The third quarter was all Campbelltown as they kept CSNA/Sydney Uni to just five goals in the third quarter, while putting up 11 of their own to hold a comfortable 13-goal lead at the final break, 30-17. Campbelltown surged again in the final quarter to put the result beyond doubt, sealing their place in the decider by 14 goals.
Minor Semi Final: Blue Mountains 53 def Inner Western Suburbs 37
Inner Western Suburbs escaped to a 14-10 lead at the first break after a tense opening quarter. Blue Mountains settled in the second term, leveling at 15 goals apiece four minutes in, before surging ahead to lead by as many as six. Inner West were not to be outdone however, and they closed the gap to just three goals at the main break, 23-20.
After Inner West scored the opening goal of the third quarter Blue Mountains went on a scoring rampage, adding nine goals before Inner West got on the board once again, setting up a 43-27 advantage at the final break. It was goal-for-goal in the final term with Blue Mountains smothering degence ensuring Inner West made no inroads into the margin, taking victory by 16 goals and advancing to next week’s Preliminary Final.
Major Semi Final: Central Coast 56 def Eastwood Ryde 36
Central Coast had jumped out to a 15-7 lead at the first break and while Eastwood Ryde was finding it tough to get the ball into their shooting circle, their goalers took advantage of every opportunity to go to the post.
The full-court defence from Central Coast, led by their goal attack, gifted them the opportunity to go ahead by 13 at the long break, 29-16. Although Eastwood’s defenders managed to pick up a few intercepts in the second half, Central Coast continued to build on their lead to take the win by 20 goals and advance straight to the Grand Final.
Minor Semi Final: Bankstown City 58 def Liverpool City 48
A strong first quarter from Bankstown City saw them take a 15-8 lead into the first break. Liverpool City got back within five early in the second quarter before Bankstown City’s defensive pressure began to pay dividends as they escaped to a 33-18 advantage at halftime.
The high ball into their shooting circle was working well for Bankstown City, making the feeders’ jobs easier while Liverpool City worked the ball around and fought back to trail by just 12 at the final break. The teams went goal-for-goal in the final quarter before a late surge from Liverpool City, but the margin was too great to make up, Bankstown City victorious by nine goals and through to the Preliminary Final.