ON THE BALL: Goal attack Stephanie Wood has her eye on proceedings at the university.
ON THE BALL: Goal attack Stephanie Wood has her eye on proceedings at the university. Patrick Woods

Lightning set to host finals game but where will it be?

NETBALL: The Lightning is assured at least one 'home' game in the upcoming Super Netball finals and captain Geva Mentor is hopeful the action will be at their main base at the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Her team can finish no worse than third in the regular season standings after thumping West Coast 64-50 in round 12 at the Sippy Downs venue on Friday night.

They are in third place amid the finals-bound top four in the eight-team competition, more than two wins clear of fourth-placed Magpies with two rounds remaining.

So the Lightning are guaranteed at least one 'home' match during finals and it will be at either USC or Brisbane Entertainment Centre.

Mentor wants it to be at the former.

"I think for us it would be fantastic to play up on the Sunshine Coast and reward our staff and community," she said.

"We would absolutely love, as a team and as an organisation/franchise, to be (playing there). That's our home. When it comes to finals, home court advantage definitely counts for something and it's also great to reward your fan base."

Playing at the university also eliminates any travel concerns with bus/car trips to and from Brisbane.

"(But) we've got to factor in that the venue could potentially be down in Brisbane," she said. "We appreciate we don't run it (the schedule). It's over to the hands of the competition and Netball Australia.

"They're in charge of finals and I'm guessing they want to make sure revenue comes in at the top of that but I know we're fighting a hard case (to host a finals game)."

The Sunshine Coast won its seventh match from its past eight outings by beating the Fever.

The Lightning trailed 6-1 early in proceedings, which led Mentor to suggest the hosts were not at their best.

"Not every game is going to be pretty and not every game is going to feel great," she said.

"For us our main focus was our third quarter but that probably meant we turned too much focus on the rest of the game and the start got away from us a little bit.

"That's probably the one thing that was most disappointing from the performance, our start.

"But the positive was we were still able to turn it around in that first quarter."

Scores were locked at the first change and the Lightning surged to a 31-24 half-time lead before going on with the job.


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