Gallaher influential in another Ajax win

At first Samara Gallaher showed she was a problem for her rivals going to the hoop.

The Ajax forward used her strength and athleticism to bully the South Pac Magic defence off the dribble.

Then she began to show her range from deep.

When she started threatening in the pick and roll, her enduring all-round class became clear.

The former Tall Fern poured in 27 points on Tuesday night to lead Ajax to a 65-33 over a heavily depleted Magic team, hit hard by a combination of illness and injuries.

Gallaher was joined by Hannah Beede, who had 10 points, while Zoe Richards added eight.

Ajax was dominant from the beginning, holding the Magic to five first-quarter points.

However, the Magic stuck around to remain within seven before a big second quarter — in which Gallaher went on a 10-2 run herself — put Ajax up 35-14 at halftime.

Lisa Wallbutton chipped in with 14 points for the Magic, while Sereana Rokotakala had eight.

But they were the only players who managed multiple baskets for a Magic team which could not keep up as Ajax continued to pull away in the second half.

It led 47-24 at the end of the third quarter, before extending the margin past 30 points in the fourth quarter.

The win leaves Ajax unbeaten on the court after four rounds, its only loss coming via an opening-night default to the also unbeaten Varsity, due to Covid-19 in its squad.

In the night’s other game the Andy Bay Falcons Tahi beat the Falcons Rua 64-38.

The Tahi took a 10-0 lead to start the game, doubling that margin to 20 at halftime, going in at 31-11.

Jordyn Chin led the Tahi with an efficient 12 points, while Brittany Richards, Alexa Duff and Elise Carline all added 10 each.

Hannah Soper had 18 points for the Rua.

Varsity’s game against Varsity Gold was deferred.

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