The Melbourne Vixens have recorded their first loss of the season to a final quarter comeback from the Queensland Firebirds, 54-59.
Although leading for majority of the first three quarters, it was a 16-11 final term that saw the Firebirds take the win.
Neither team gave an inch in the physical match, which provided thrilling plays in both attack and defence.
Vixens coach Simone McKinnis said she could draw positives from the match, particularly during the first quarter.
“Obviously we had a good start to the game, but gradually we dropped off each quarter,” McKinnis said.
“Attack wise, I thought we had some of our best flow and speed of the ball and some of our best play that I’ve seen so far in that first quarter, so that’s a real positive. But I don’t think our defensive pressure was where it should be.”
Defensive duo Jo Weston and Emily Mannix had their work cut out for them against the tall shooting pair of Romelda Aiken and Gretel Tippett, meanwhile the match-up between Liz Watson and Gabi Simpson provided some thrilling contests.
“I thought Lizzie started off well,” McKinnis said.
“I thought she was actually having one of her best games this year so far in the first part of the game.”
“We just lost that confidence to be letting the ball go, and that impacts everything around the attack.”
Liz Watson was named Nissan Player of the Match for the game, finishing with 22 goal assists.
With the Firebirds out to a commanding lead, changes were made in the defensive end, bringing in the height of Kadie-Ann Dehaney to combat Aiken.
Although making inroads into the margin, the Firebirds prevailed, taking home the four points for a win and another three bonus points.
The Vixens now hit the road for three away games in a row, taking on the Adelaide Thunderbirds on Sunday 20 May.