Newcastle Hunters rising star Hannah Young has already collected her first win in the Women’s National Basketball League, playing just over seven minutes in the 21 point victory over the Sydney Uni Flames in the opening round.
Young’s triumph was fellow Hunters stars’ Lara McSpadden and Susannah Walmsleys’ disappointment however, as the duo were forced to watch their squad fall to the University of Canberra Capitals.
While Walmsley never made her way onto the court in the defeat, McSpadden had two minutes and fifty seconds of playtime off the bench, collecting three points in her cameo stint.
It was Kia Nurse – who also went on to collect Player of the Week in the competition – that shone brightest in the season opener however, as she dropped 26 points on the stunned Uni Flames, including four three-pointers.
For Caps head coach Paul Goriss, it’s all good news.
“[Nurse] is only going to get better,” he said. “For me as a coach, it was like winning the Lotto when her agent called and said she wanted to come to Australia. She plays with a smile on her face, but underneath that she’s a deadly assassin.”
Elsewhere in the opening round, Opals point guard Katie Ebzery made her competitive debut with Perth Lynx, and chalked up her first loss with the team – the squad fell by 12 points to an electric Adelaide Lightning, 66-78.
Ebzery played over half an hour on the court in her opening appearance for Lynx, collecting two steals from defensive positions.
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Also in the first round, Suzy Batkovic – who is playing out her final season in the WNBL – tasted defeat with Townsville Fire, falling five points short to the Dandenong Rangers in a tight 68-73 clash.
Cassidy McLean, who is playing with Bendigo this season, was the only Hunter representative that collected a victory in the first week, as Spirit knocked off the Melbourne Boomers 82-72.
McLean provided key impact off the bench as the sixth woman, playing just over seventeen minutes in total and collecting six points in her first appearance with Bendigo after her move from Sydney in the off-season.