Force teams fail to apply the Heat
IPSWICH was unable to capitalise on its turbo-charged start leaving head coach Mick Conlon annoyed at a missed opportunity.
After upsetting Gold Coast in their previous Queensland Basketball League clash, Force threatened to upstage another heavyweight contender Townsville Heat by leading 21-8 in the first quarter.
However, Force's 39-32 halftime lead quickly evaporated at Ipswich stadium this afternoon as the team stacked with NBL talent stepped up.
While acknowledging the Heat's status in the league, Conlon was disappointed with his side after finishing so strongly against the Gold Coast.
"They (Townsville) are a smart team and they took away a lot of our acts and then we were done basically,'' he said.
"We didn't know what to do and we panicked.
"We've got a young team and I expect some of that but the way we played in the second half was embarrassing in front of a home crowd.''
A positive for Force was keeping Townsville to 88 points after they scored 100 against Toowoomba in their win the previous night.
However, Conlon saw an opportunity today to secure Ipswich's second win over the road-trip team.
"They (Townsville) played last night,'' he said. "They didn't get to the hotel to about one o'clock. We should have ran away with that game.
"They looked like they had all the energy in the second half.''
Force captain James Legan did his best to lift the team with some handy three-pointers in his 34 point haul. However, a lack of real offensive support proved the difference.
"I really wanted to pour it on them early and we did. But they ripped us apart,'' Conlon said.
"That was their full squad but there were no excuses. We should have beat them.''
The Force women were also outgunned by Townsville in their latest match despite the gritty efforts of import Soana Lucet.
Lucet had arrived in Ipswich late on Thursday, heading straight to team training in preparation for today's QBL match.
Despite a 22-hour flight and rushed arrival, she scored 27 points from 33 minutes on court in her first game at Ipswich stadium.
Force lost their second game in a row, going down 89-69. It was only in the third quarter that Ipswich challenged before Townsville import Natalie Novosel shattered Ipswich's hopes with 44 points.
Coach Brad George called for more energy and passion from his team after Force trailed 30-11 in the first quarter.
"They are a very young side and they have to play energetic,'' George said.
Both Force teams can regather for their next QBL match, away to Logan next weekend.
George is hoping his second import Shenneika Smith arrives in the next week to get Ipswich's season back on track.
State of play
QBL men: Townsville 88 def Ipswich Force 74 (James Legan 34, Jaryd Eustace, Kyle Harvey 11).
QBL women: Townsville 89 def Ipswich Force 69 (Soana Lucet 27).