a stunning last quarter took Westfield Health Sheffield Hatters to the Betty Codona Classic title after they beat Nottingham Wildcats 79-73 in an exciting final at All Saints yesterday.
Trailing by double-digits during the game at various stages, the tournament hosts looked to be heading for disappointment, but they dug deep to overcome Wildcats 79-73 with a late surge.
Great Britain star Steph Gandy claimed a double-double of 26 points and 11 rebounds for Hatters, but playmaker Lisa Hutchinson was to eventually prove the catalyst for victory
Wildcats had been in the ascendency during the opening half, with an Ines Ferreira three-pointer from corner and nice skip to the hoop by Chantelle Pressley handing them the early advantage at 12-4 as Hatters started in sluggish fashion offensively. It wasn’t until the last quarter that Hatters drew level at 64-64 thanks to Georgia Gayle’s three-pointer.
Hatters sensed victory and weren’t going to allow the chance to pass up silverware as they continued their late renaissance with a series of fast break scores and free-throws with Gandy leading the way as Wildcats disintegrating down the stretch.
Carmen Reynolds tried her hardest to get Wildcats through with 26 points and 10 rebounds.
Result - Nottingham Wildcats 73 (17,39,54) (Reynolds 26, Prior 12, Pressley 12); Hatters 79 (14,26,50) (Gandy 26, Hutchinson 16, Torres 13).
Plate final: Cardiff Met Archers 71 Sevenoaks Suns 49.