After suffering back-to-back home-court losses, the ACUVUE Sydney University Flames put their season back on track at the university on Friday night with a 91-50 result over last-placed Australian Institute of Sport.
Dual Olympian Suzy Batkovic-Brown led the Flames’ scoring with a game-high 21 points to go with nine rebounds, while Nat Porter scored 19 points and grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds. Alice Kunek topped the AIS scoring with 11 points.
The hosts were never in doubt after establishing a 23-9 lead at the first break and a 51-17 half-time advantage.
The most pleased – and relieved – person at ACUVUE Sports Hall was Flames coach Karen Dalton.
“The first half in particular I was really happy with,” Dalton said. “It was a bit scrappy in the second half but we had a lot of rotations after the main break.
“The bench players train just as hard as the other girls and it’s always great to give them an opportunity to play. I’m particularly happy with a couple of them and their opportunities will come.
“We worked on a few things tonight, particularly our scoring inside the paint and Nat (Porter) and Suzy (Batkovic-Brown) are the two that we really need that to happen with and to their credit they really tried hard to get it done.
“The whole team stuck to the game plan. It was really to try to improve some of the areas that I felt had cost us in the past two weeks.”
The win lifted the Flames to sixth on the ladder. They now travel to Devonport to take on eighth-placed Dandenong Rangers on Saturday night.
WNBL – Game 6
ACUVUE Sydney University Flames 91 (Suzy Batkovic-Brown 21, Natalie Porter 19, Mikaela Dombkins 12) d Australian Institute of Sport 50 (Alice Kunek 11, Michelle Joy 9, Tess Madgen 8, Adrienne Jones 8) at ACUVUE Sports Hall, Sydney University Sports and Fitness Centre.