Robert Bailey, Gleaner Writer
Homestead Cougars recorded a crucial 52-48 victory over Unique Ballers in their Jamaica Basketball Association (JaBA) National Women Super League match on Sunday at the National Stadium Courts.
The Richard Polack-coached Cougars were led to victory courtesy of a good all-round performance by former national representative, Sasha Dixon, with 18 points, nine rebounds, seven steals and six assists.
Dixon received good support from Annarhesia Farquharson, who scored 16 points, and captain Melissa Farquharson, with eight points and eight assists.
National representative Loretta Gordon (18) points, Tracey-Ann Kelly (12), Zandria Dell (10) were the leading scorers for Unique Ballers, whose record now stands at three wins and one defeat.
Victory moved the Cougars to first in the standings on nine points, one ahead of defending champions Waulgrovians Bullets and the Ballers, who are both tied for second place with eight points each. They are followed by Braves Smilers (seven), Lady Panthers and Waulgrovians Clippets, on six points each.
Farquharson said the win was a big morale booster for her team in their quest to win this year's competition.
"This victory has put my team in a good position to qualify for the second round as the top team in the league," said Farquharson. "We just have to maintain our composure and keep winning our matches when we get into the second round of the competition.
"A win like this will certainly boost my team's confidence and help us to realise that there is a good possibility for us to win the tournament," Farquharson said.
She added: "I think in order for us win the league, we definitely have to stay focused and practice much harder in training."
The first half was very close and competitive as both teams played solid defence with their point guards Dell, from the Ballers, and captain Farquharson displaying excellent dribbling skills. However, the Cougars managed to eke out a narrow 25-23 lead at half-time.
The Cougars out-muscled their opponents at both ends of the court in the third period while outscoring them 14-12 for a 39-35 lead at the end of the third period. The Cougars, who are aiming for their first title in five years, maintained their dominance over their opponents in the final stanza to complete the victory.