St Maurice's High School was the place to be on Sunday 4th November as the West Lothian Wolves travelled to Cumbernauld to take on your U16 Lady Rocks in a Scottish Cup tie! Wolves, arguably one of the stronger teams this season, would be a difficult challenge for the Rocks no matter the end score.
The match was off to a fast paced start from both teams who created lots of early opportunities to score around the basket but neither team could convert early on. The 1st points of the game came from the Lady Rocks as Lucy Rafferty converted two free throws to break the deadlock. From here, the two teams traded baskets and maintained a fast paced flow to the game but it was the Cumbernauld side who maintained a slight advantage. Wolves, however, weren't to be out-done as they started to out-rebound the Lady Rocks.
END Q1 | Lady Rocks 16-15 West Lothian Wolves
As was the case early Q1, the second quarter saw the Lady Rocks create lots of opportunities to score but they failed to convert. This allowed the Wolves to start reducing the Rocks lead to only 5 points. Some frantic play from the Lady Rocks forced Coach McDaid into a timeout as the Wolves continued to grow their momentum. The score at this point was 20-17 in favour of the Lady Rocks.
Coming out of the timeout the Lady Rocks looked fired up! Improved defensive rotations and full-court pressure allowed the Rocks to steal the ball five times, all leading to open layups at the basket. The pressure was back on Wolves.
Some nice ball movement on offence created even more opportunities for the Rocks to score, but Wolves maintained their pressure on the Lady Rocks making some early fast-break attempts leading to points on the board.
The Lady Rocks faithful were left on their feet at the end of the half as Saoirse Ferguson scored on the HT buzzer to extend the Lady Rocks lead!
HT | Lady Rocks 31-19 West Lothian Wolves
After coming in late to start the 2nd half, West Lothian immediately start the 3rd quarter with an easy and uncontested layup. Understandably frustrated, the Lady Rocks sprinted up the court, moving the ball at pace and finding Rafferty for 2 from the high post. The Lady Rocks fans turned up the noise!
Wolves began to cut the deficit as they put together a number of stops on defence, continuing to mount pressure on the Lady Rocks. Most of these stops turned into scores for the Wolves resulting in the Rocks only maintaining a 2 point lead. A shaky 3rd quarter forced Coach McDaid into a late Q timeout.
The Rocks came out of the timeout and weathered the storm the see out the quarter.
END Q3 | Lady Rocks 40-35 West Lothian Wolves
The 4th quarter started well as the Lady Rocks forced the issue by drawing contact under the basket, allowing the Cumbernauld side to get to the free-throw line more than they did in Q3. However, Wolves maintained the pressure on the Lady Rocks by knocking down some difficult shots on the other end of the court. The score was 47-41 mid way through Q4.
A late scoring run from Wolves forced Lady Rocks into a late Q4 timeout, score 54-52 in favour of the Lady Rocks with 1 minute to play in the game.
The Rocks came out of their timeout to weather the storm, putting together successive front court steals by Saoirse Ferguson, both of which led to scores for the Lady Rocks. The Lady Rocks fans were on their feet making noise for their girls!
In the end the Lady Rocks came away with the huge win to progress to the semi final round of the Scottish Cup.
FT | Lady Rocks 58-52 West Lothian Wolves