CAREN Hugo hasn't tasted defeat for 143 days.
Playing basketball for Wagga Blaze and netball with The Rock-Yerong Creek, the 36-year-old has racked up a combined win-loss record of 25-1 this year.
The Blaze, who lost to Queanbeyan in their sole defeat in March, will look to defend their Waratah League division one title at Terrigal on the weekend, where they meet Tamworth in Saturday's semis for a spot in Sunday's decider.
TRYC has just completed an unbeaten 16-0 regular season as they look to secure a third straight Farrer League netball premiership.
The Blaze were forced to come from behind to beat Goulburn in overtime last weekend, which Hugo said was a much-needed kick in the pants before finals.
"We're focused on improving defensive effort and getting those rebounds. It was a perfectly timed wake-up call really," she said.
"The way we finished that game was good, but you don't want to have to rely on that. We'll aim to come out a bit stronger and not put ourselves in that position."
"It was not ideal, we'd prefer to be playing better basketball at this point of the season, but it's good to know where we're at.
"We knew after that game we had a bit of work to do the last couple of weeks to refocus and sort out some things."
Hugo said the stop-start nature of this year's Waratah League, where they have played just ten games in six months, has made it tough to maintain momentum.
"It's pretty tough, you lose motivation in the middle weeks and have to get back up again," she said.
"Playing netball has been a big benefit for me I think, it's a different game but I'm still getting a game every weekend.
"For some of the other girls, the breaks they're getting are a bit more disruptive."
"If we end up with the same numbers (next year) a condensed comp would be much better, start it later in the year and run them all together.
"We can only do what we can with the (number of) teams we get and hopefully they sort something out that's more manageable."
The Blaze beat Tamworth 72-64 in their only meeting this season in May.
"They were tough and exposed the things we didn't do well last week (against Goulburn), Hugo said.
Hugo said the return of skipper Steph Male, who generally guards the biggest offensive threat in the back court, is a huge boost.
"Her defensive effort and impact on our defensive is massive," Hugo said.
"It takes a lot of pressure off Shakera (Barnes, import point guard) so she can concentrate more on our attacking end and Steph can take their stronger guard."