TAMWORTH Thunderbolt women will be aiming to finish their Waratah State League season on a high this weekend.
The Greg Irwin-coached side will be looking to bounce back after going down to the unbeaten Coffs Suns last weekend, although it doesn’t get much easier for the side with two tough away games.
Second-placed Bathurst Golddiggers and fourth- placed Wagga Wagga Blaze will be the Thunderbolt opponents when the side travels to Newcastle for the two final matches.
“We showed against Coffs last week that we can compete with the top sides,” Irwin said.
“We are still working out what game suits us best and individual positions. We have four point guards.”
The Thunderbolts will have close to a full squad and will benefit from having Anna Ralston back, who lives in Newcastle.
“She is a smart player and great in defence,” Irwin said.
Irwin is hoping for a win but is also giving the girls a bit of freedom, hoping it will help the relatively young and new side gel a bit more in preparation for next season.
“We will try to play the style and structure that I am after.
“I just want them to get on the floor and get after the opposition.”
Irwin is hoping to keep most of the side together for next year.
“We are potentially a very good side with some great young players coming through.”
“If we had a few more bigs we would be seriously competitive – it is promising for the future.”
The Thunderbolts started the season well but slumped mid way through after a seven-point loss to Coffs and another close loss to Newcastle, which Irwin feels they should have won.
“It took our confidence away and we just seemed to struggle after that.”
Leica Le Brocq, Aimee Diebold and Emily Staunton will join captain Jesse Brown and Ralston as key players while the coach is also hoping young guns Taylor Skelton and Rachel James can continue their improvement.
The Thunderbolts play Wagga at 5pm tomorrow before Bathurst at 9am on Sunday at Newcastle Basketball Stadium.