Victoria Dandenong Rangers WNWBL
The Victoria Dandenong Rangers have claimed the 2012 Women’s National Wheelchair Basketball League championship, defeating the Stacks Goudkamp Bears (North Sydney) in Sunday’s final at Dandenong Stadium.
The Rangers comprehensively picked apart the Bears at both ends of the floor to record a 78-39 victory to claim their second consecutive championship. Cobi Crispin was unstoppable offensively, recording 29 points and claiming the Finals MVP Award. However it was the selfless team play of the Rangers that was most impressive across the finals weekend.
Dandenong Stadium played host to the final five games of 2012, with the semi finals tipping off Friday night. The Rangers won a direct path into the Grand Final defeating the Bears, whilst the Be Active Western Stars booked a place in the Preliminary Final defeating the Sydney University Flames.
In Saturday’s Preliminary Final the Bears picked apart the Stars - shutting down the league’s leading scorer Amber Merritt and restricting the West Australian’s ability to push the ball in transition.
Sunday action started early, with the Bronze Medal Playoff between the Sydney University Flames and Western Stars. The Stars capitalising on the Flames early foul trouble. Sydney fought back in the fourth period but couldn’t quite close the gap - the Be Active Western Stars winning the Bronze Medal.
The Grand Final started in an intense flurry of action - the experience of Rangers players Melinda Young & Amanda Carter shining through in the early stages. Shelly Chaplin (16 points) & Leanne Del Toso (17 points) got in on the action, driving the home side offensively across the first two periods of play. Melanie Domaschenz rotated in to give the Rangers a different look and distributed the ball with precision to the Rangers scorers.
The Bears tried to adjust defensively after the long break but that opened the game up for Cobi Crispin to sweep in for a series of baskets and deliver the knockout blow, putting the game out of reach for the visitors. The Rangers claiming the championship by a whopping 39 point margin.