A dominant second quarter showing has seen the Central Pulse jump into second spot on the ANZ Premiership ladder.

The Pulse defeated the Northern Stars 55-37, a result created by a lopsided second period which saw the team from the capital open an unassailable lead.

Their 17-8 advantage in that quarter overcame an otherwise sluggish start, in a clash between two sides who play at a slow pace.

The Pulse average just 83.8 possessions per game - six fewer than the next slowest side - and it can lead to tight contests when their attack isn't fully functioning.


That was the case in the first quarter, when passes were consistently off target as both defences displayed tight pressure. Pulse goal shoot Cathrine Tuivaiti could muster just four shots in the first quarter, but the Stars' feeds into the circle were sloppy, with six turnovers in the final third alone as the Pulse led 11-9 at the first interval.

The Stars have been a disappointment in their debut season, having only beaten the disastrous Mainland Tactix. Those two wins coexist alongside six lopsided defeats, with their attacking end a constant issue.

Once again, the Stars struggled to create shots, putting up just 47 shots to the Pulse's 61, and committing 40 turnovers. Goal attack Malia Vaka ended with more turnovers (seven) than made shots (six).

That lack of cohesion in the middle third eventually caused their demise. Granted regular opportunities, the Pulse pulled away, quickly extending their lead to double digits. Tuivaiti found her form, fed well by midcourters Whitney Souness and Sara Bayman, who utilised more width to find the goal shoot in prime position under the hoop.

The Stars took 34 minutes to reach 20 goals as their fortunes floundered, and were briefly blunted further by a two minute sin-bin for Jess Taane, who was ruled to have committed deliberate and intentional contact for a shove on her counterpart.

Their deficit extended to 18 by the final whistle, dropping the Stars to a 2-6 record. The Pulse move to 5-3 and temporarily move past the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic, who can jump back into second spot with a win over the Northern Mystics tomorrow night.