Team Northumbria advanced in the WBBL Cup after a difficult 87-65 win over league minnows Durham Palatinates.
Having just joined the WBBL, The Palatinates have lost all four games in their first WBBL Championship season.
But the newbies brought their A-game to Sport Central.
Durham got the best of TN in the first quarter to lead 22-16 before TN bridged the gap to tie the scores at 38-38 at the half.
“It was a rough first half, we didn’t know what to expect from Durham,” said TN’s star guard Alison Gorrell.
“We were going into this game blind – I think that the first quarter we were adjusting to who we were playing.
“We were super flat in the first half but we knew it was just lack of energy that was causing our mistakes.
“At half-time we talked about how the mistakes would take care of themselves. We said ‘let’s pick it up on defence and our offence will come from that’ and from then on we just got into our rhythm.
“I definitely think as the game went on we grew more comfortable. This is the type of match where you know they [Durham] aren’t a very deep team, so we knew we had to wear on them throughout the game and by the fourth quarter they were tired.”
TN looked to shift into top gear come the fourth quarter, scoring 24 points and snuffing out Durham’s attempt at a comeback – restricting them to just 11.
Gorrell and her team will be looking to emulate that fourth quarter performance next week as TN are back in league action at Sport Central.
“We have a tough game coming up against Nottingham next week,” she added.
“They’re a team that’s had a tough start and now they’re probably playing at their best.
“So, for us it’s going to about building on what we did well against Durham and thinking about the things we didn’t do well – we can’t afford another first half like that.”
Report by Jonathan Ramsay