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Tactix withstand thrilling Pulse fightback

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 1/05/2016
Maree Bowden of the Tactix © Martin Hunter/Getty Images Maree Bowden of the Tactix

Mainland Tactix have staved off a mesmerising fightback to beat Central Pulse 58-57 in a nail-biting trans-Tasman match in Porirua.

It was second successive one-goal win for the Tactix, who climb into outright second in the New Zealand conference behind the Southern Steel, leaving the Pulse third.

Trailing by nine goals entering the final quarter, the previously stuttering Pulse found their verve to reduce the margin to two with 7min remaining.

The Tactix restored goal shoot Mwai Kumwenda at that point. The Malawi international had exited at the last break to have her sore ankles assessed.

However, coach Sue Hawkins injected her back into the fray and the Tactix settled, keeping the hosts at bay over the closing minutes.

Hawkins was delighted her team held on for just their second win over the Pulse in their last 11 meetings.

"A win's a win but it was a pretty ugly last quarter," she said.

"I was surprised we didn't put our foot to the pedal. All of a sudden it was like `girls, have you left the stadium already?'"

Kumwenda (26 from 32 shots) and Bailey Mes (31/36) were effective in the shooting circle, fed routinely by Tactix captain Anna Thompson.

Chelsea Locke was a force for the Pulse in the midcourt, particularly in the final stanza, while young goal shoot Maia Wilson (41/42) continued her excellent campaign.

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