NSW’s girls show QLD how it's done
THINK your Australia Day celebrations this year were memorable?
They probably had nothing on the talented Lismore Storm under-18 girls side who finished champions of the 2014 Girls Under-18 Queensland State Championship Division 2.
Some sparkling play saw the team round off a tough five days of action with a dramatic grand final victory over Burdekin Wildcats.
Player Chloe Jeffery said the final hooter at Sunday's decider had given a moment to savour.
"It was just pure elation," she said. "We couldn't believe we had done it.
"We were just giving each other hugs and celebrating.
"We had gone up to Queensland and won their tournament.
"It was nice to show them that we can play basketball in New South Wales."
The team was invited to play in the competition, which featured some of Queensland's most promising young players, after team members took part in off-season tournaments in the state.
Teams from across the Sunshine State took part in the five-day competition, playing round-robin matches.
The Lismore side, which played under the Gold Coast Tides name, came through the group stages before beating Rockhampton in the semi-finals.
After trailing the Wildcats in the early stages of the decider, the team roared back to eventually claim a 59-51 win.
"At the start of the third quarter, we were down by a few points," Lismore High School student Chloe said.
"Our whole attitude changed. We became more positive.
"We scored a few unanswered baskets and we went from there."
Chloe has been playing for about 12 years and is one of a crop of talented juniors coming through the Lismore ranks.
The point guard's elder brother Toby plays for the Lismore Storm men's State Youth League,
"I love my team," she said. "That's what makes me want to play.
"I have known most of them for a long time and they are a great bunch of girls.
"I like all the people involved with the sport and playing competitions.
"It's a big part of my life and I love it."
Chloe thanked coach Dave McWhirter for his efforts during the competition.