Home Gas are arguably the hottest team in Cayman women’s basketball.
The Flames downed the Lady Wolves 43-38 last Thursday at the University College of the Cayman Islands multipurpose hall. The defending champions now have a three-game winning streak in the Cayman Islands Basketball Association 2012 national women’s league.
Leading the way was newcomer Gemma Graelis, who had a game-high 18 points along with 10 rebounds and three steals. Graelis, who lives in George Town and is originally from Barcelona, Spain, states the victory is a test of character.
“It’s really important as we started out with a great game,” Graelis said. “In the end we brought everything up, got to see everything and worked really hard. I’m really satisfied.
“Once we put in work together, it’ll be really easy. This is my first year here, I played semi-pro back home and started playing basketball since I was five or six years-old. There’s a lot of potential and improvement on this team from the first match to now.”
Home Gas had their hands full with the Lady Wolves. The Flames had a 25-14 lead by half-time before the Wolves outscored them 24-18 in the second half. Last year’s regular season champions stayed in the game behind Beneica Thompson (12 points, 13 rebounds, three steals) and Cassianne Lawrence (11 points, 12 rebounds, three steals). Honourable mention goes to Theresa Hamil, Kristen Kuzyk and Alexandra Boyle who combined for 15 points, 28 rebounds and eight steals.
Head coach Bruce Reynolds and assistant coach Wendy Manzanares would see their Flames hold on for the victory behind Sade Wood’s 12 points, seven steals and six assists and La-Torae Nixon’s 14 blocks, 12 rebounds and six steals. Meredith Whitney had a clutch five points and six rebounds.
With the win, the Flames are 3-1 and firmly in second place. They trail the 3-1 Dominos Lady Heels (who beat Home Gas in the season opener) and are ahead of 2-2 Welly’s Cool Spot, 1-3 Wolves and 1-3 Island Heritage Silver Mist. Welly’s missed out on keeping pace with the frontrunners after a 54-51 upset last Thursday at the hands of the Silver Mist (see story below).
League matches continue this Thursday, 1 March, at UCCI. Wolves battle Welly’s at 6pm before Dominos square off with Home Gas at 7.30pm.