Northern Hawks have produced a fast finish to edge out a luckless Cavaliers 46-45 in a spirited crosstown clash at the Silverdome.
Cavaliers had surrendered a 11-goal lead in the third quarter in Friday night’s State League derby, but appeared well in control holding a 37-30 lead at the last interval.
But the third-placed Hawks turned the game on its head, chewing up the deficit inside the opening five minutes of the final term.
The rivals traded goals amid multiple lead changes, but Cavaliers would cough up possession late and miss crucial shots that proved costly in the final stanza.
Danni Carsten’s girls, who entered the all-Launceston encounter needing a win to reach the finals, had led by four goals at quarter-time and eight at half-time that had all the signs of an upset.
Defenders Rachael Smith, Issy Maskell and Tessa Coote had interrupted the Hawks feed into the goal circle and ensured the Cavs had strong midcourt ball movement.
Ashlea Mawer had been restricted from goal scoring opportunities, but the Hawks prime shooter came into her own during the second half.
Teammates Kate Hyland and Danni Devlin had kept the Hawks in the game as their fierce rebounding reignited the side’s momentum.
Dana Lester and Grace McHugh working tirelessly in the centre court for the Cavs before the fightback arrived.
The 10th win from 13 games has the Hawks placed in second place overnight, while the Cavaliers are left with just four wins and nine losses and still three games behind Cripps Waratah.
Cavaliers earlier took out the 19-and-under match 74-25 over Northern Hawks.