18/04/2024

Southern Steel won with a last gasp goal in Dunedin. Photo: Southern Steel

Steel have produced one of the finishes of the season, defeating Magic courtesy of a last gasp George Fisher goal that sent the Dunedin crowd into raptures.

Steel has produced one of the finishes of round eight in the ANZ Premiership, defeating Magic courtesy of a last gasp George Fisher goal that sent the Dunedin crowd into raptures.

The Steel cemented their spot in the top three, felling a brave Magic outfit who are without a win since the opening round.

Grace Kara resumed her established role at wing attack for Magic, with Chiara Semple starting at goal attack. It provided immediate dividends as the visitors got out of the gates quickly through Caitlin Bassett.

The Australian superstar converted 39 of her 41 attempts during the match in a vintage performance, getting silver service from Kara and centre Samantha Winders.

For Steel, captain Shannon Saunders provided 14 goal assists on the day and helped stem the tide in the fourth quarter. Fisher continued her circle dominance in her first season, converting 50 of her 54 goal attempts.

With her side holding a four-point advantage heading into the fourth quarter, Magic found a second wind to push the hosts to the wire. With the scores tied up with 53 seconds on the clock, Steel fashioned an opportunity for Fisher to claim the win, and she coolly converted.

She has been one of the players of the season. Fisher sits in second for goals across the competition and leads all women in the top 10 with her goal conversion rate, which sits at a world-class 92 per cent.

It is Steel’s first back-to-back wins in a row, which sees them hold third place above the star-studded Tactix.

The Magic are still yet to taste victory since their inspiring round one performance but will have an opportunity to build on this showing the Mystics next week.

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Tactix scrounge win over Pulse

In the Saturday game, Tactix delivered in front of their fans by holding out the Pulse to claim a 55-52 win. It was a game Tactix desperately needed to stay in the top four and keep pace with those in front.

Wing attack Samon Nathan was superb, providing Ellie Bird and Te Paea Selby-Rickit with 21 goal assists.

Mystics close out Stars

In the top of the table matchup, Grace Nweke extended her lead at the top of the goal shooters, converting 60 of her 64 attempts in Mystics’ win over Stars. She has formed a dangerous partnership with Bailey Mes, who provided 18 assists to Nweke.

For Stars, Gina Crampton and Maia Wilson were both superb again, but their defence struggled to contain the post play of Nweke from the get-go. Mystics took a seven-goal lead into the main break and never looked back.

The gap at the top has now closed to a single game after round eight of the 2021 ANZ Premiership season.

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