Hustlers suffer first home defeat against Lightning squad
THE Gladstone Hustlers suffered their first home defeat, going down 161-106 in a torrid bout against the Paradise City Team Lightning on Saturday night.
A buoyant crowd greeted the two teams at the PCYC and the action was fast from the onset.
The nimble and tight defensive unit that confronted the Hustlers proved too difficult for the local lasses to overcome despite their best efforts.
Heavy collisions were the feature after the half-time break as fatigue allowed the bout to open up.
Hustlers' Highland Fling (Gwen Pincott) was a stand-out in her first bout back from knee surgery, jamming effectively and racking her share of points on the board for the Hustlers.
The Paradise City jammers proved extremely hard to handle, their precision skating causing plenty of head-aches for the Hustlers defence.
"Yeah it was a hard-fought one," Pincott said.
"For me it was just getting through the pack was all that it was about when I was jamming and luckily it came off a few times."
While disappointed with the result, Hustlers coach Charlie Keenan said the match had been a great test.
"They're (Paradise City) a really good defensive side so you've got to take advantage when you can and even when we did get through they just locked back up, locked the cupboard and made it hard," Keenan said.
"They've got some really good skaters, Alice Affliction, one of their jammer blockers, she is just amazing on her skates.
"It (Hustlers' effort) was really good, we knew we were going to get a tough ask and the girls needed this, a bit of a tougher bout, to just show what we need to work on."