Ligue Féminine de Basketball Lenae Williams, the queen behind the arc
The 12th round of the Ligue Féminine de Basketball is not over because Bourges Basket and Charleville-Mézières' match was postponed. However the final two games of the weekend went to the hosts USO Mondeville and Nantes-Rezé.
USO Mondeville's victory against Arras (73-68) keep them alone in third position in the regular season standings for the moment.
Hervé Coudray, the Mondeville coach, decided not to worry about Pauline Akonga-Nsimbo who scored 26 points and picked up 9 rebounds for Arras. Instead he asked his players to focus drawing fouls to start the match.
Arras picked up 9 fouls in the first quarter with Akonga, Krissy Bade, Nadezda Grishaeva and Gabriela Marginean all collecting 2 each.
Mondeville was able to edge the first quarter (23-21) thanks to the inside work of Naignouma Coulibaly with 8 points and the team's 7-from-10 shots from the charity stripes.
Arras, despite their foul problems, continued to be aggressive and in a low scoring second quarter drew level at the break (34-34).
The game opened up in the third quarter and initially favoured the guests from Arras who had a maximum lead of 6 points. For Mondeville Giedre Paugaite started to throw her weight at the scoring end and with a K. B. Sharp trey Mondeville were back on level terms (48-48) with three minutes left to play in the quarter.
Mondeville went into the final quarter leading (55-51) which they turned into a double digit advantage by the 35th minute (67-54).
Arras had no option but to go for long distance shots but failed to bring the score down enough. Despite the team's foul problems only Bade fouled out. Only Grishaeva joined Akonga-Nsimbo in double figures with 12 points.
For Mondeville Paugaite finished the game with 22 points and 12 rebounds. Laëtitia Kamba was next with 15 while Coulibaly hampered with foul problems had 10 points. One interesting stat from this game is that Mondeville attempted just three three-pointers.
Keep it simple when Lenae Williams is around
All Lattes-Montpellier would have needed to do was keep the ball out of the hands of Lenae Williams (left) in the last ten minutes and they could have won the game.
Nantes Rezé scored more points from beyond the arc these days than in the paint. They went 7-of-13 from beyond the arc during the first half of the match to lead (35-30) at the break.
Montpellier closed the door on open shots form beyond the arc during the third quarter and regained control of the game with a 25-13 quarter to go ahead into the fourth quarter (55-48).
Hence Laurent Buffard decided it was pointless to use Caroline Aubert during the final quarter because she had spent most of the match chasing or challenging Gaëlle Skrela (18 points).
Instead Sarah Michel took over the point, who as a youth player had terrorised most teams while playing point guard.
Montpellier were taken off guard and started to leave space for the perimeter shooters. Williams fired in 3 shots from the land of many. Then Johane Gomis (13 points) and Yuliya Andreyeva (10 points) also connected while Michel picked up 4 assists during the final ten minutes.
Williams finished the game with 30 points, including 6-of-10 in three-point shooting.
As they say stats do not lie: Nantes went 12-of-22 from beyond the arc (36 points). They also added 9 points from the charity stripes. Of the remaining 28 points scored, 24 came inside the paint.
Montpellier's second defeat in the Ligue Féminine de Basketball came down to three things: Aubert having a break, Michel's passing and Williams shooting skills. All the results from round 12: