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Play-off dream dashed in Durham

Oaklands Wolves saw their hopes of a place in the Women's British Basketball League play-offs end with a heart-breaking 72-70 loss at Durham Palatinates, on Saturday.

Shaq Wade saw a potentially game-winning shot rim out as she had an open jump shot, leaving Durham able to seal the victory from the foul line.

Such a disappointing end for Lee Ryan's team had looked unlikely in the opening stages as Wade's drive to the basket saw them take a 24-11 lead into the first break and although the hosts fought back in the second period it was Wade who gave Wolves a 40-32 half-time lead with a lay-up.

Durham scored the first nine points of the second half to take the lead, but Claire Abbott's triple put Wolves back in front and she drained another shot from downtown to send the visitors into the final break with a 54-49 advantage.         

It was the Ri Thompson [pictured] show at the start of the fourth period and Wolves' top scorer hit a floater, a pair of free-throws and a driving lay-up to keep the visitors in front, and Amy West's basket saw them take a 62-54 lead into the final seven minutes.

But Harriett Ottewell-Soulsby capped a 12-2 run to give Durham a two-point lead with 3:21 on the clock before Wade pulled up for a jump shot to tie the game with three minutes remaining. 

Ottewell-Soulsby restored Palatinates' lead before Eliza Brault hit a dagger three to put her side up by five with two minutes on the clock and although Thompson proved cool at the line with four straight free-throws, the hosts held on for the win.

Thompson led Wolves with 19 points, six rebounds and two steals, with Wade adding 12 points and six boards. Day had a big double-double for the second week running, adding 16 rebounds to her 13 points and three steals.  

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