• Caledonia Gladiators

WBBL Match Report - Caledonia Gladiators Win 3/3 So Far in 2022 WBBL Campaign

The Caledonia Gladiators carry on their hot start to the season as they win 71-61 against the Sevenoaks Suns at the Lagoon Leisure Centre!

The Gladiators won their previous two games, overcoming the Newcastle Eagles 76-44 and the Essex Rebels 82-74 to start their WBBL championship season.

It was a tough-fought victory, perhaps the Gladiator’s toughest game yet. The score was kept low throughout the game and both teams struggled to make effective runs consistently, the defence was tough but the home team just edged it out at the death of the game!

Chantelle Handy got the game underway with the tip-off and got the first points on the board with a jumper from just inside the arc.

Bradshaw then connected with two free throws to tie the game up early on.

The offence was generally poor for the teams in the opening period with the lead not getting over three points with Handy giving the home side the three-point lead.

After the opening 10 minutes, the score was 18-15 to the home team, Handy leads Caledonia and Judit Fritz led the Suns with five points each.

In the second quarter, the pace of the first quarter remained the same - not many lead changes but the game was always close and tight-knit from both sides on both sides of the ball, with six steals in total for the Gladiators (three from Mcgarrahan alone!).

At half time, Handy and Stašová both had seven points for the Gladiators which was a team-high but in terms of the game-high, Janice Monakana had ten for Sevenoaks with the score at 30-28 to Caledonia.

One thing keeping Sevenoaks in this game was the sheer amount of rebounds they had, an 11/15 offensive/defensive split from 26 boards dominated the Gladiators 6/11 from 17 at the half, and that’s what gave the away side the advantage going into the third, despite the Gladiators being up at halftime, the Suns who started the third the best, down by two at the half, the Suns went in an 8-0 run before the Gladiators got something back.

After the emphatic charge from the Suns, Mcgarrahan hit a layup with a sweet dish from Robyn Lewis to split the defence.

Later in the third quarter, Tea Adams gave the Gladiators their last lead of the third quarter after a fast break lay up.

The Suns then went on a 9-2 run to mark the end of the third quarter at 42-47, going into the fourth quarter in the lead.

Down by five, the Gladiators were hell-bent on keeping their win streak alive in this challenging game. Adams with a layup through the defence, Stašová got a steal and charged down the court for another layup and the Gladiators were then down by one lone point.

After this, the teams traded leads and shared ties and droughts but with 1:22 left in the game and down by one, the energy shifted.

Today's game MVP was Radka Stašová with a pull-up two-pointer to take the lead, a three-pointer to extend it to a four-point lead, two free throws to make it six and then her overall tally to 18 points to go with four rebounds, four steals and three assists!

To close out the game, Adams had two free throws and then Handy finished how she started with a layup, giving the Gladiators a 71-61 victory!

Tea Adams also had a dominant game today, 14 points with seven assists, three rebounds, a steal and a block on 6/12 (50%) from the field!

Renee Busch had a great game for Sevenoaks, playing all 40 minutes, 24 points on 8/13 (61%) from the field with four three-pointers.

The shooting tonight was great from the Gladiators, 29/63 (46%) from the field with 24/48 (50%) from two-point land and 5/15 (33%) from downtown, the shooting is one of the critical factors controlled and gave the Gladiators the victory., the other factor? The defence, a low-scoring game meant that the better defenders won - 13 steals and two blocks from Caledonia gave us a dominant defensive win!

The Gladiators are back in action tomorrow with a double header with the men’s team against the Leicester Riders at the Emirates Arena at 14:00!

@DGJournalism_ on Twitter

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