Australian Gliders

Taking no chances from the outset, the Gliders played their starting five for most of the first quarter and coach David Gould’s strategy paid off handsomely as Cobi Crispin and Amber Merritt again set the tone of the contest.

Merritt reached double-figures early in the second term and Crispin quickly followed her as the Australia consolidated a 17-6 quarter-time lead into a double-digit advantage.

Clare Nott (eight points) then chimed in prior to half-time to give the Gliders their biggest lead of the game heading into the main break.

While Japan had their most effective period in the third term, Leanne Del Toso (four points, three steals) helped ensure there would be no comeback with a strong performance at both ends of the court and Australia went on to win every quarter in the 71-41 victory.

The Gliders’ big lead at three-quarter time allowed the entire roster to hit the floor as seven players recorded points including Annabelle Lindsay (four points, two rebounds), Shelley Cronau (two points, two assists) and Shelley Chaplin (two points).

Merritt finished with a game-high 28 points on 14-18 shooting while Crispin tallied a monster double-double of 23 points and 16 rebounds, compared to Japan’s total of 24 boards as a team while Crispin also fell just one offensive rebound short of Japan’s tally.

Find the box score here.

While the greater goal has now been accomplished, the Gliders still head into a gold medal playoff tomorrow against the winner of China/Iran. Stay tuned to Basketball Australia for updates on the game time.

Australian Rollers

Continuing their domination at the tournament, the Rollers dished out the same treatment that they had handed previous opponents as they dismantled Hong Kong from the opening tip.

A 20-0 run to start the game was the basis for the victory with Shaun Norris (14 points, six rebounds, five assists) and Tom O’Neill-Thorne (eight points) setting the pace.

Hong Kong got on the board late in the first term but were then held scoreless in the second period as Michael Auprince (12 points) and Brett Stibners (12 points, four assists, three steals) got in on the act with Stibners also grabbing two steals.

Every Roller was able to receive court time as Australia kept their foot down, showcasing a spectacular defensive performance to hold Hong Kong to just seven points in the second half while maintaining their effective offence to finish with 64% shooting in the 102-10 victory.

Tristan Knowles (14 points), Kim Robins (12 points), Bill Latham (12 points) and Sam White (ten points, three steals) made it seven Rollers in double-figures while another stellar team defensive performance saw them hold Hong Kong to under 10% shooting.

Find the box score here.

While the Rollers have now qualified for the World Championships, they still have two games remaining with the Semi-Finals and gold medal playoff to come.

They will take on the winner of Korea/Thailand in tomorrow’s Semi-Final. Stay tuned to Basketball Australia for updates on game time.

The Australian Gliders and Rollers have completed a perfect day at the AOZ Qualifiers, advancing to next year’s IWBF World Championships with victories over Japan and Hong Kong respectively.

Basketball Australia

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