English Roses bloom in game two
Jamaica's Sunshine Girls were beaten 55-47 by the English Roses in game two of their best-of-three contest of the Supreme Ventures Sunshine Series at the National Indoor Sports Centre yesterday.
The match ended prematurely with one minute and 15 seconds remaining - the lights went out for 10 minutes. A decision was then taken by Jamaica's coaching staff to award the match to England, given the fact that the visitors held an unassailable advantage.
Jo Harten top scored for the English Roses with 39 goals from 43 attempts. She received good support from Pamela Cookey (nine from 11) and Kadeen Corbin (seven from eight).
England's coach, Anna Mayes, was satisfied with their improvements from game one, which they lost 56-47 on Friday night.
"It was a good victory for us," said Mayes. "We started much better then we did in game one because we were very patient and we worked the ball into the spaces.
"Our defenders were on today, as they kept the Jamaicans off the mark," she added.
Romelda Aiken led the way for the Sunshine Girls with 18 goals from 26 attempts, while Jhaniele Fowler scored 14 from 16 and Shanice Beckford netted 10 from 11. Thristina Harwood (four from six) and Ann-Kay Griffiths (one from three) also contributed.
Jamaica coach Minneth Reynolds was very disappointed with her team's performance.
"I think we didn't play well because we made too many unforced errors," said Reynolds.
"We made a number of changes at the start of the game because of some niggling injuries, but those changes didn't work out for us," she said. "This is something that we are going to take a look at before the final game on Tuesday."
The Sunshine Girls, who made four changes to the starting line-up from the one which defeated the English Roses in the first Test, began the match poorly, as sloppy passing and poor marking
resulted in England racing out to a 5-0 lead.
Jamaica's starting goal shooter, Fowler, and goal attack Griffiths missed several open shots in the quarter, and England led 16-11 at the end of the period.
Fowler was replaced by Aiken, and Beckford was brought on for Griffiths at goal attack at the start of the second period. Despite the changes, the Sunshine Girls failed to cut the deficit, as poor passing from the mid-court players and sloppy defending resulted in the visitors increasing their lead to be 31-25 at half-time.
The Sunshine Girls came out strong in the third quarter to cut England's lead to 34-31 midway the period, but the Roses regained the ascendancy for the reminder of the quarter, outscoring Jamaica 9-3 for a 43-34 lead at the end of the third quarter.
England were all over the Sunshine Girls in the fourth quarter, as they dominated the quarter. In defence, Geva Mentor and Eboni-Beckford Chambers had an outstanding game, as they both combined to shut out the Jamaican shooters.
The third and deciding match in the series will be played tomorrow at the same venue.