The Robinhood Stars are hoping to create some breathing room between them and the chasing pack as they continue working towards an ANZ Premiership finals berth when they face The Good Oil Tactix in Christchurch on Monday for round 13.
Back to back losses to the Northern Mystics have the Stars sitting in second spot - four points ahead of the fourth placed Tactix who have a game in hand.
Captain Maia Wilson is not ready to push the panic button yet however and was pleased with much of their play in the eight-goal loss to the Mystics last week.
“I think in a lot of these games we’re actually playing quite well, it’s just the small little things in each quarter. We have to keep our heads up – we really want to play them (Mystics) again, hopefully in a final.”
It won’t be an easy trip south with the Tactix getting the results at home and Wilson was aware the Stars had lost three of their last five matches.
“You never want to say you’ve peaked too early but some of the results are unfortunately not going our way.”
Extra time was needed when they last met in Round 7 – the Stars claiming that match – and another close affair is expected.
“Like the Mystics, they are a team that’s definitely building,” Wilson said of the Tactix. “For us, we need to find that build again.”
Stars coach Kiri Wills believes the games against the Mystics have prepared them well for a run home against the Tactix, Steel and Magic.
"We've got a really exciting attack end but I think they hadn't played consistently for 60 minutes, but against the Mystics they did. I think as long as we back that up then we're going to be really hard for those other teams to beat. Defensively we've been tracking really well all season except against the Mystics so we have to do something about our game plan there." Wills said.
"I think we've got the goods to push really hard and we're hoping that we take step up from here. It's a new team and we've built new combinations and it hasn't always gone the way we've wanted it to, so we're really working hard on consistency and intensity within the game."
ANZ Premiership Round 13: Robinhood Stars vs Good Oil Tactix- Monday 12 July 7:15pm, Christchurch Arena, Christchurch