GB Women defeat Ukraine for first warm-up victory
The Standard Life GB Women defeated Ukraine 83-74 this evening in their second game of the four nation tournament in Liege.
Led by19 points and four rebounds from guard Natalie Stafford, all 13 players registered valuable court time leaving GB coach Tom Maher a happy man going into tomorrow's game against the hosts, Belgium.
"It was pleasing to get the win and to see lots of great performances from people deep into the squad," Maher said. "We've got to put it into context of what we have to do in the longer term, there is still a lot of improvements to be made but plenty of time to make them."
In a fast paced opening period, Great Britain took a 28-22 lead after the first ten minutes of play. Ukraine hit back though and held GB to just two points in the first five minutes of the second quarter, cutting the lead to just three points at 30-27.
However, GB showed great determination when it mattered to maintain their lead for the majority of the period and they went into the half-time interval 34-31 ahead.
Despite having their lead cut to just a point at one stage in the third quarter, the GB Women then pulled away to go into the fourth quarter 56-47 up and built up a 20-point lead at 76-56 mid-way through the final period to seal a comfortable win.
Jo Leedham, who scored 13 points, was pleased with the overall team play on both ends of the court: "We had great energy today, great team defence, especially in the second quarter where we were able to lock it up and they only put up nine points so it was a great effort by everybody," she said.