After losing their first two matches of the season, it was do-or-die for the Brisbane Breakers who entered the season as one of the championship favourites.
While they were made to work hard for the result, the Breakers disc movement and defence proved too much for the Freeze as they
US import and former UQ Ultimate representative Brett Matzuka played a leading hand in the result with a wide range of passing options that cut through the Freeze defence.
The Freeze had golden chances to win both the second and third sets but were ultimately unable to find the knockout blow.
Adelaide Dennis was a constant threat for Canberra with a personal haul of three goals but it wasn’t enough to get them over the line.
Strong defence paves the way for Breakers set win
Both sides were guilty of some poor attacking options when pressing their opponent’s endzone in the early exchanges, but it was the Breakers who struck first through Liam Grimmond against the run of play.
Another Moore goal and a score to Adelaide Dennis kept the Freeze in the set, but the Breakers were largely too strong in defence and controlled possession.
Breakers steal the match late in the second set
It was high tempo Ultimate to open the second set despite the swirling winds, which resulted in a quick goal to Scott Perry for Canberra to take an early lead.
Matzuka responded for Brisbane, but a Breakers turnover close to their endzone allowed Dennis to scoot in for her second goal of the match.
Brisbane was not afraid to keep pushing in their quest for fast disc movement and goals with Matzuka and Rachel Parsons cancelling out the Canberra lead to lock the scores up at 3-3.
A critical turnover with four minutes left to play saw the disc in the Breakers’ hands and Dom Simpson made Canberra pay with the go-ahead goal and just minutes left on the clock
It was a tense finish to the set as Dennis added to her tally to lock the scores up once more, with turnovers meaning the set was anyone’s to seize.
In the end it was Simpson who claimed the set – and match – winning goal off a Matzuka pass.
Brisbane breaks Canberra hearts in final set
Once again it was Canberra who opened the scoring, this time through Liverpool import Rachel Turton who waltzed over for the first goal of the final set.
Moving the disc upwind was difficult for both sides but the Breakers managed to guide it safely into the hands of Cheng for back-to-back goals and the scores were locked up once more.
Again the two teams traded goals before a Kat Smith huck found Grimmond with just over two minutes left to play, putting Brisbane in the lead.
A Lavis goal locked the scores up again and gave the Freeze the chance to steal a championship point, but it was Cheng who ultimately iced the game for the Brisbane Breakers.