American's three-point shot seals nail-biting Force victory
AFTER a quiet five games to start the new season, Brandi Brown responded at the most critical time to secure Ipswich Force a terrific state league win.
Asked by head coach Brad George to be more aggressive and take more shots, the American import delivered in Friday night's thrilling 93-91 victory at Ipswich stadium.
With Ipswich trailing by a point with 10 seconds remaining, Brown nailed a three-pointer to take Force's state league record to five wins and just one loss.
"By far she was back to her best,'' George said of Brown.
Brown's 27 point contribution came in a match George was impressed with how the team answered Mackay's constant threat.
"To play four tough quarters was our best performance of the year,'' he said. "Hopefully that gives us some confidence as well.''
Force trailed 24-23 after the first quarter before leading 50-46 at the main break.
Both teams duelled in the third quarter with Mackay challenging until Brown's decisive final play.
"We didn't switch off. Everyone just did their job,'' George said.
That included stronger defensive efforts by Morgan Pink and Meg Essex.
American Chelsie Schweers led the way offensively with 38 points. She was well supported by Brown and Bree Farley with 21.
"They shot really well,'' George said, also happy how his team looked after the ball.
The Ipswich Force men lost Friday night's game 105-96 to Mackay despite some valuable contributions from James Legan (26 points), Kyle Harvey (24) and Jason Ralph (19).
While Force are scoring enough points to win, their defence continued to let them down.
Force led 28-26 before conceding 34 points in the second quarter shattered the home team's hopes.
Unbeaten competition leaders Mackay finished stronger to leave the Ipswich men with two wins from their first six games.
Both Force teams have a testing weekend ahead. They play Logan away on Saturday night before hosting Gladstone at Ipswich stadium on Sunday afternoon.
State of Play
- QBL men: Mackay 105 d Ipswich Force 96 (James Legan 26, Kyle Harvey 24, Jason Ralph 19).
- QBL women: Ipswich Force 93 (Chelsie Schweers 38, Brandi Brown 27, Bree Farley 21) d Mackay 91.
- Next games: Saturday night - v Logan at Cornubia Park Sports Complex. Sunday (noon and 2pm): v Gladstone at Ipswich stadium.