Only one Women's Game was played this past weekend and it was for the Malta Shield Championship between Luxol and Loyola. Coming into the game Luxol was the big favorite to win their 3rd Cup of the season and did not disappoint. Luxol and Mollie Williams was way too strong for Loyola and Brietta Thomas defeating Loyola 67-51 in the Championship game.
1. Mollie Williams 6'2" F (University of Washington) Luxol has once again been named Eurobasket.com player of the Week. Mollie had a game that will be remember for a long time in Malta in the Shield Championship. Mollie had 29pts, 27rebs, 4stls, 3blks a total dominating performance by the American Forward. Mollie so far is by far the best player in Malta no question along with her team Luxol being by far the best team in Malta this season . Luxol has captured 3 out of 3 cups early on in this season just dominating the competition.
2. Brietta Thomas 5'11" G (LA Tech) Luxol had another very good performance this past weekend in a tough loss in the Shield Championship to Luxol and Mollie Williams. Thomas produced 25pts, 13rebs, 3stls, 1 ast in the championship game but it was not enough to knock off the the top team in Malta.
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League Gzira Athleta 65 Starlites Naxxar 59 (9-11, 12-14, 20-19, 24-15) Gzira Athleta: M. Stefanovic 6, C. Grima 17, B. Beverlee 6, L. Sciberras 11, A. Simmons 19, D. Said Hollier 4, A. Borg 2, J. Schembri, S. Vella, A. Debenay, C. Mifsud Starlites: D. Revol , K. Galea 5, J. Doughty 8, S. Farrugia, K. Pirotta 5, J. Micallef 8, J. Grima 11, P. Arguello 19, E. Magrin, S. Davis 3, A. Lupo Referees: Z. Dobrosavljevic, I. Simic, I. Marjanovic Both sides were assured... [read more]
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League
Gzira Athleta 65 Starlites Naxxar 59 (9-11, 12-14, 20-19, 24-15)
Gzira Athleta: M. Stefanovic 6, C. Grima 17, B. Beverlee 6, L. Sciberras 11, A. Simmons 19, D. Said Hollier 4, A. Borg 2, J. Schembri, S. Vella, A. Debenay, C. Mifsud Starlites: D. Revol , K. Galea 5, J. Doughty 8, S. Farrugia, K. Pirotta 5, J. Micallef 8, J. Grima 11, P. Arguello 19, E. Magrin, S. Davis 3, A. Lupo Referees: Z. Dobrosavljevic, I. Simic, I. Marjanovic
Both sides were assured of a Play Off place, but the semi final placings were not yet finalised. Gzira Athleta were vying for the top position and Starlites were searching for a third position.
In this game, Gzira Athleta had to chase for practically up to the start of the last quarter. Christina Grima (175-G/F-89) made her entry in the game in the last quarter and her contribution erased Starlites' then eight point advantage. Thereby Gzira Athleta obtained their victory to overtake Luxol, at the top placing, whilst Starlites had to wait for the Depiro match, after them, to know what play-off position they were going to fill.
After Starlites' opening two hoops, Athleta made a 7-0 run, with a Leanne Sciberras (189-SG-90) trey, in their only lead for quite some time. Starlites then put in a 7-2 session ending run, with a Kristy Galea (158-SF-00) triple, to regain their lead.
In the start of the second period it was Amelia Simmons (181-F-87, college: Wilmington, DE), with her hoops, who helped Gzira Athleta in their chase to reach their opponents. Patricia Arguello (178-SF-87) netted a Starlites trey, and although there was a reaction from the Athleta lasses, Starlites held their lead till the interval, when they were 25-21 ahead.
After the break Gzira Athleta put in a better effort, as their triples found their mark. Milica Stefanovic (180-G-81) began with two early ones, but Starlites were still making their own points at the other end with Arguello notching six consecutive points, with a triple, and Jean Doughty's four hoops in this period kept Starlites ahead on a slight 44-41 advantage.
The last quarter had Kimberly Pirotta (157-SG-98) also netting a trey for Starlites, as they increased their lead, but Grima went on court, and the game turned around, in favour of Athleta, as she poured in her points, seventeen in all, including two triples.
Starlites still held leads, and were just behind their adversaries, late in the match, but Gzira Athleta pulled through, to record their win, and finish in top position.
Hibs: E. Micallef 3, E. Cassar 9, S. Gambino 12, I. Agius 2, K. Caruana 2, N. Vella, K. Portanier Mifsud 3, N. Farrugia 3, T. Armstead 28, J. Scerri 3 Depiro: A. Mifsud, G. Mifsud 5, M. Balzaraviciute, S. Brincat 16, M. Bonett 13, H. Acreman, N. Agius 4, M. Scicluna, C. Schumacher 10, J. Xuereb, T. DeMartino 4, C. Ciantar 3 Referees: E. Mangani, C. Farrugia, J. Mangani
Starlites' defeat, in the earlier match, gave Depiro an occasion to leapfrog over them in the table , with a victory over Hibs, in the last match before the Play Offs, but this did not come about, as the Paolites were determined to end their season with a win, despite being left out of the semis.
The last quarter was a disappointing one for Depiro, as they saw Hibs opening up a good advantage, as Trudy Armstead (185-F-91, college: Northwestern St.) made a good haul of points, in her last match for the Paolites.
As it is Athleta will now meet Depiro, and Luxol face Starlites, in the two semis, in best of five encounters.
Elena Cassar (179-PG-92) netted a trey for Hibs, and Gabriella Mifsud (167-F-95) did the same, for Depiro, in a quick start. The lead changed hands twice more, before Depiro came up with 9-2 run, as Samantha Brincat (176-SF-79) and Maria Bonett (174-C-95) netted triples. Hibs pulled back two hoops, to reduce their deficit.
In the next period Hibs went in front, with a Naomi Farrugia trey, but Brincat nailed her second trey. Emma Micallef (168-F-92) and Silvia Gambino also made triples for the Paolites, but Carlee Schuhmacher (185-C)'s hoops kept Depiro in front. Hibs went closer, but were still 30-34 in arrears, at the interval.
After the break Hibs managed to tie the score, but another Brincat 3-pointer had Depiro regaining their advantage. The Paolites made a 9-2 run, with Armstead's hoops and another Gambino triple, but their lead was short lived, as Depiro levelled the score, at 45-45.
In the last session Depiro were surprised by a gritty Hibs patch, when they registered a game winning 16-2 run, with Armstead's points and a Kimberly Portanier (167-F-97) trey. Brincat and Bonett did again score triples for Depiro, in the remaining time, but by-then they had fallen too far behind, and the Paolites could end their league commitments with a comfortable victory.
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League With only one day to go till the end of the regular season, all the four play-off spots are now known after that Hibernians, seeking to keep hoping till their last game versus Depiro, failed in their task to beat Starlites this weekend. What still needs to be decided is the final placing of all the four top teams and the semi final series' sequence. The first match on Wednesday is between Gzira Athleta and Starlites. A win for Gzira Athleta will put them in... [read more]
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League
With only one day to go till the end of the regular season, all the four play-off spots are now known after that Hibernians, seeking to keep hoping till their last game versus Depiro, failed in their task to beat Starlites this weekend.
What still needs to be decided is the final placing of all the four top teams and the semi final series' sequence.
The first match on Wednesday is between Gzira Athleta and Starlites. A win for Gzira Athleta will put them in the top spot as they have a better basket difference over Caffe Moak Luxol in the direct encounters. On the other hand, a Starlites' win would ascertain the third place for them and they would meet the same opponents, Gzira Athleta in the league play-off semi finals.
The second match tomorrow is between Hibernians and Depiro, a game which the latter would eye carefully should Starlites end up on the losing end in the previousmatch on the day. This is because a win over Hibs would then lead Depiro to reach Starlites on equal points in the table but Depiro would end up third as they beat Starlites twice in the league. That would then mean that Gzira Athleta would meet Starlites in the semi final series whilst Depiro would then 'cross swords' with Luxol in the other post-season series.
Caffe Moak Luxol 47 Gzira Athleta 54 (10-14, 3-20, 20-11, 14-9) Luxol: S. Pace 7, M. Mercieca 7, A. Munir 14, I. Baena Medina, K. Portelli, C. Sollami, P. Ellul 6, L. Caruana Montaldo, M. Darmanin 6, C. Curm 7 Gzira Athleta: C. Grima 17, B. Zammit 5, L. Sciberras 5, A. Simmons 16, D. Said Hollier 3, A. Borg 8, J. Schembri , S. Vella, A. Debenay, C. Mifsud Referees: B. Vassallo, C. Farrugia, I. Simic
A strong Gzira Athleta showing in the second quarter, with the interval score at 34-13, was very influential in this game between the top two sides in the standings.
Although Luxol improved in the second half and came closer, albeit momentarily, to their rivals, Gzira Athleta managed to regain control of the match to get some revenge for the 5 point loss in the first round.
The first quarter was a balanced affair with the lead changing hands a number of times with Luxol, still missing their power forward Stephanie Demartino, having points from Sarah Pace (165-PG-88) and Attirah Munir (185-G, college: Ark.-Pine Bluff) whilst Gzira Athleta were led off the blocks by their usual dangerous offensive duo Amelia Simmons (181-F-87, college: Wilmington, DE) and Christina Grima (175-G/F-89).
Luxol could only pot three shots from the charity line and had no baskets in the second quarter as they started falling behind with Gzira Athleta banging in also a number of treys from Antoinette Borg (182-SF-88), Beverly Zammit and Leanne Sciberras with the margin increasing to over 20 points at the change of ends.
The half time pep talk served Luxol to improve on their offensive game and two good runs helped to halve the deficit by the end of the third quarter, 33-45. This same margin went further down after early Paula Ellul and Christina Curmi hoops for Luxol in the last quarter but Gzira Athleta recouped their efforts and managed to hit back to re-establish a comfortable lead once again.
Starlites Naxxar 72 Hibernians 68 (after overtime, 64-64) (12-16, 16-24, 14-10, 22-14) - (8-4) Starlites: K. Galea 12, J. Doughty 3, S. Farrugia 6, K. Pirotta 4, J. Micallef 11, J. Grima 10, P. Arguello 24, A. Lupo Hibs: E. Micallef 6, E. Cassar 9, S. Gambino 7, I. Agius 1, K. Caruana, K. Portanier Mifsud 5, T. Armstead 28, A. Marinkovic, J. Scerri 12 Referees: B. Vassallo, C. Farrugia, I. Simic
This game had to be decided after overtime after Starlites, who could have even been happy with a minimal loss as that could have also ascertained their play-off spot, forced the extra five minutes of play with a late 3-pointer from Spaniard Patricia Arguello (178-SF-87). This was a must-win game for Hibs in their search for a play-off spot and they were very close to achieving this with a late turnover allowing Starlites to force overtime.
The game was interesting and pleasant with both sides eager to run out winners. Hibs were the better side in the first half with a late 9-0 run helping them to change ends with a 40-28 lead. Led by their guard Silvia Gambino and with close range points coming from Trudy Armstead (185-F-91, college: Northwestern St.) and fast break points from Julia Scerri, the Paolites started extending their lead.
Starlites, who had their post Josephine Grima, returning from injury, somewhat improved in the third quarter and had a 7-0 run which brought them close until a late Kim Portanier Mifsud trey helped Hibs end the same quarter 50-42 in the lead.
The fourth rubber was very appealing with various facets. Elena Cassar had a trey for Hibs but Starlites hot back decisively and even went in front after a 13 point positive run with hoops from Arguello and their young duo Kristy Galea and Jaelle Micallef (155-PG-00).
Hibs however replied immediately with Arsmtead leading the way and putting the blacks back in front, having also possession very late in the game. Yet a turnover off an out of bounds play, after a time out, gave Starlites the opportunity to force overtime after Arguello's long distance shot and putting them with a psychological advantage over their opponents.
In fact, Starlites were the more sprightly side in the overtime period and quickly took the lead. Hibs, shorn of Gambino's presence on the court, did try to get back but Starlites kept their cool and emerged winners.
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League A lot is yet still to play with two round of games to go to the end of the regular season, although Caffe Moak Luxol and Gzira Athleta are already assured of their playoff spots and will be playing for the top spot when they meet each other this coming Sunday as they are at par in the league direct encounters so far with a respective win in the previous two rounds. On the other hand, Starlites, Depiro and Hibs are tussling for the remaining two semi final sp... [read more]
MAPFRE MSV Life Women League
A lot is yet still to play with two round of games to go to the end of the regular season, although Caffe Moak Luxol and Gzira Athleta are already assured of their playoff spots and will be playing for the top spot when they meet each other this coming Sunday as they are at par in the league direct encounters so far with a respective win in the previous two rounds.
On the other hand, Starlites, Depiro and Hibs are tussling for the remaining two semi final spots but now, after Depiro's success over Starlites and Hibs' defeat against Luxol this weekend, the pressure is all on the Paolites as they need to win their remaining encounters against their direct rivals to keep their play-off hopes alive.
Depiro: A. Mifsud, G. Mifsud 2, M. Balzaraviciute 5, S. Brincat 14, M. Bonett, N. Agius, M. Scicluna, C. Schumacher 19, J. Xuereb 8, T. DeMartino, C. Ciantar Starlites: J. Micallef 11, K. Galea 10, J. Doughty 3, K. Pirotta 1, J. Grima, P. Arguello 13, A. Micallef, S. Farrugia 2 Referees: B. Vassallo, K. Dvornikzac, M. Rajczi
Depiro achieved an important win to leapfrog in the league standings over the same opponents albeit with a game in hand, but more importantly to distance themselves from Hibs whom they will meet in the last game of the regular season.
The first half was extremely balanced, ending also at par 23-23, with both sides having the lead on different occasions.
Starlites, still without Josephine Grima, had an early 12-4 run with guard Kristy Galea (158-SF-00) scoring from long distance but Depiro quickly replied mainly through their import player Carlee Schumacher (C) and Samantha Brincat (176-SF-79).
In the second quarter, Spaniard Patricia Arguello (178-SF-87) starting finding more space after being tightly marked in the opening minutes and helped Starlites maintain the pace. A 9-2 Depiro run at the start of the second half was quite influential on the final result as Starlites now had an uphill task to get back into the game and despite Jaelle Micallef (155-PG-00)'s points, there were six points between the sides, 37-31, with ten minutes to go.
With both sides continuing not to be very precise in their shooting, Depiro managed to make good use of their superiority in offensive rebounds and maintain this lead in the final quarter to increase their hopes to make it to the league semi-final series.
Hibs: E. Micallef 3, E. Cassar 17, S. Gambino 5, I. Agius 2, K. Caruana, N. Vella, N. Farrugia, T. Armstead 21, J. Scerri 4 Luxol: S. Pace 15, M. Mercieca 7, A. Munir 10, I. Baena Medina 7, K. Portelli, C. Sollami 2, P. Ellul 11, L. Caruana Montaldo, M. Darmanin, C. Curmi 14 Referees: S. Micallef, C. Farrugia, M. Rajczi
Caffe Moak Luxol dealt a blow to Hibs' hopes of a play-off spot as they managed to open up a significant lead in the second quarter and then controlled the same lead in the second half.
The first quarter was a tit-for-tat affair with Hibs having most of the lead until late Paula Ellul (94) points for Luxol, shorn of the services of Stephanie De Martino (184-F-93), put them 16-12 in front.
A strong Luxol start to the second quarter saw them register an 11-2 run and although Hibs finally managed a reply with long distance shots, Luxol still held on and changed ends leading 41-27.
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