BENDIGO Braves had a couple of sterling wins in Round 3 of the National Basketball League (NBL)1 South Men’s competition, whilst Geelong Supercats held off Waverley Falcons in a thriller to be the only undefeated team remaining in the competition.
Geelong Supercats (81) def. Waverley Falcons (79)
Geelong Supercats have held on in a thrilling contest against Waverley Falcons, coming from four points down at quarter time to post an 81-79 win. The Supercats quickly hit back in the second quarter to cut the half-time deficit to just one point, before extending it out to two at the last change. The Falcons hit back in the final term to balance the ledger, but could not get in front when it counted. Isaac Turner (16 points, six rebounds and two steals) and Gabriel Hadley (17 points, four rebounds and two assists) both turned it on for the Supercats, while Jack Macdonald (13 points, four assists and three rebounds) and Owen Odigie (12 points, seven rebounds) were also impressive. For the Falcons, Durrell McDonald (18 points, seven rebounds and three steals) and Bennie Lewis (15 points, nine rebounds, six assists and two steals) were the pick of the bunch, while Tristan De Zwart Forsyth (15 points, five rebounds) and Jake Heath (14 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals) were also strong in the match.
Frankston Blues (78) def. by North West Tasmania (86)
Grabbing a win on the road, North West Tasmania Thunder did enough against Frankston Blues in the middle two quarters to cause an upset at the Frankston Basketball Stadium on Saturday night. With the first and fourth terms all-square in terms of points, the Thunder won the second and third terms by a combined eight points to secure the 86-78 victory. Joseph Chilcott (19 points, four rebounds and two steals) led the point-scorers, while Mason Bragg (13 points, four rebounds, four assists and four steals), Joel Beveridge (12 points, six assists and two rebounds) and Paul Campbell (11 points, seven rebounds and two blocks) were among the better players on the night. Veteran David Andersen stood up for the Blues, putting up 15 points, nine rebounds and two assists, as Lucas Barker impressed with 10 points, eight assists and six rebounds. Dillon Stith picked up a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds, while Lachlan Baker (18 points, seven rebounds) equal top-scored for the losers.
Knox Raiders (78) def. Albury-Wodonga Bandits (73)
A topsy-turvy match between Knox Raiders and Albury-Wodonga Bandits saw the Raiders string back-to-back wins, whilst handing the visitors their third straight loss to start the season. The Bandits raced away to a seven-point lead at quarter time, but that was reversed in the second half with the teams all square again. As if there was a breeze in the State Basketball Centre, the Bandits again stormed to a commanding eight-point lead at three quarter time, before the Raiders piled on 27-14 in the final quarter for a 78-73 win. Ben Ayre led the scoring with 20 points, five rebounds, six assists and two steals, while Simon Grant (10 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and three steals) and Dylan Hare (12 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and three steals) both picked up double-doubles. It was predominantly a two-man show for the visitors as Mitchell Dance and John Crnogorac combined for 43 points and 12 rebounds, while Sharif Watson came close to a double-double of nine points, 10 rebounds and three steals.
Ballarat Miners (80) def. by Bendigo Braves (85)
Bendigo Braves needed the full four quarters and then some overtime to finally grab a win over Ballarat Miners despite a one-sided second term. The Braves raced out to a 23-point lead at half-time of their road trip, scoring 30-8 in the second term to seemingly be in complete control. The second half saw a change in fortunes however, as the Miners piled on 46 points to 23 to level the scores, 69-69 at the final buzzer. Despite all the momentum being with the Miners, the Braves found a way, putting up 16 points to 11 in the first overtime period to come away with the 85-80 win. Ray Turner had a night out with 27 points, 10 rebounds, two steals and two blocks, teaming up well with Nelson Larkins (23 points, five rebounds and three assists) on the scoring front. Brennan Rymer (10 points, six rebounds, five assists and two steals) and Javaan Mumtaz (13 points, three rebounds and three assists) were the other prevalent scorers. For the Miners, William Hickey knocked down 27 points and 13 rebounds, with Matt Kenyon (17 points, 12 rebounds) also picking up a double-double. Sam Short (16 points, six assists and five rebounds) and Deng Acuoth (10 points, seven rebounds, two assists and two blocks) were also strong in the loss.
Diamond Valley Eagles (97) def. Melbourne Tigers (73)
Bouncing back from their first loss of the season in Round 2, the Diamond Valley Eagles moved to 3-1 in the season with a comfortable 24-point victory over Melbourne Tigers. The Eagles dominated the first half to race out to a 19-point half-time lead, before the Tigers cut the difference to 13 at the final change. Reassessing at the break, the Eagles stepped up again and stormed to the win with a 29-18 last term for the 97-73 triumph. Blacio Owili had 23 points and eight rebounds, with Ngor Manyang (13 points, nine rebounds and two assists), Ben Allen (12 points, six rebounds) and Joel Capetola (six points, nine assists, five rebounds and two steals) among the other key contributors. Anthony Karabatsos (18 points, five rebounds, five assists and two steals) tried his best for the Tigers, with Felix von Hofe (17 points, two rebounds) again solid on the scoring front, and Keenan Willie (15 points, seven rebounds and two assists) among the better players on the losing side.
Eltham Wildcats (74) def. Nunawading Spectres (69)
In a quirk of events, Eltham Wildcats grabbed their first win, whilst simultaneously handing Nunawading Spectres their first loss at Eltham High School on Saturday night. The Spectres led by a point at quarter time, with the Wildcats to go up by two at the main break. The Spectres took control in the third term to race to a seven-point advantage at the final break and seemingly on their way to another win. The home side had other ideas though, crashing through in the final term with a 23-11 quarter to secure the victory, 74-69. Adam Doyle led the way with 26 points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals, while Justin Aver (16 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals) was also prominent. Ovie Magbegor and Simon Bradbury both only scored the four points each, but combined for 21 rebounds in the process. For Nunawading, Peter Hooley (13 points, four rebounds and three assists) and Dain Swetalla (12 points, five rebounds and two assists) both stood up despite inaccurate shooting nights, while Simon Conn was huge off the boards for eight points and 14 rebounds,.
Kilsyth Cobras (86) def. Hobart Chargers (76)
Kilsyth Cobras bounced back from a Round 2 loss to post a double-figure win over Hobart Chargers. In a momentum-swinging game, the Cobras led by six points at quarter time, trailed by one at half-time and then dominated the third term to race out to a 11-point lead at the final break, before eventually getting up by 10 points, 86-76. Ben Ursich (22 points, two assists) and Corey Jeffs (21 points, 12 rebounds and two steals) were the key scorers for the Cobras, while Adrian Tomada (14 points, 11 assists, five rebounds and two steals) also picked up a double-double, and Deng Riak (nine points, 11 rebounds) was not too far off one as well. Elijah Pawson (20 points, four rebounds) was a dominant scorer, as Jacob Richards (13 points, 10 rebounds, two assists and two steals) picked up a double-double, and Jonathan Mines (13 points, five rebounds) and Jack Stanwix (12 points, eight assists and three rebounds) were also busy in the loss.
Mt Gambier Pioneers (97) def. Ringwood Hawks (93)
Grabbing their first win in South Australia this year, Mt Gambier Pioneers won a nail-biter over Ringwood Hawks on Saturday night. The Pioneers led by eight points at half-time, and while the Hawks managed to claw back to the deficit to four by the final buzzer, it would not be enough, going down 97-93 at The Ice House. Erik Burdon (22 points, two steals) led the way from a scoring perspective, as Duom Dawam (15 points, 13 rebounds) and Nick Marshall (16 points, nine rebounds and three assists) both impacted off the boards, and Thomas Daly (16 points, three rebounds and three assists) also had a say in proceedings. Ringwood’s Jack Barry (32 points, three rebounds and two steals) and Matthew Fennell (28 points) both scored big, whilst Adrien Sturt was enormous with 12 points, 16 rebounds and six assists, and Trevor Latham had eight points and 12 rebounds.
Bendigo Braves (91) def. Dandenong Rangers (89)
Bendigo Braves have won a two-point thriller over Dandenong Rangers to make it a great weekend for the Braves. Back at home after the overtime thriller against the Miners, the Braves put together a more consistent four-quarter effort to claim the victory, 91-89. A Turner basket with four seconds remaining on the clock secured the victory. Turner was unstoppable with 33 points, 14 rebounds, two steals and two blocks, while Rymer (16 points, four rebounds, four assists and two steals), Mumtaz (14 points, three assists and two rebounds) and Jacob Foy (11 points, four rebounds and two assists) were all busy. For the Rangers, Sean MacDonald stepped up for 22 points, three assists and two steals, while Oliver Hayes-Brown had a double-double of 14 points, 12 rebounds and four steals. Declan Soukup (15 points, five rebounds and five assists) was also impressive despite the narrow loss.
Waverley Falcons (76) def. Albury-Wodonga Bandits (64)
Another game, another Albury-Wodonga Bandits loss, with the visitors sinking to a fourth straight defeat at the hands of Waverley Falcons who bounced back from that heartbreaking defeat at the hands of Geelong Supercats to open the round, to defeat the Bandits by eight points. The visitors took control in the first half as the Bandits secured a six-point half-time lead, but it was all the home side in the second half, getting to within two points at the final break, before storming away to a 22-6 final term and winning 76-64. De Zwart Forsyth picked up a double-double of 18 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and two blocks, while McDonald (14 points, four rebounds and three steals), Dylan Larkin (12 points, four rebounds, three assists and four steals) and Michael Harper (16 points, two rebounds) were also strong. For the Bandits, Dance was one of the standout players on the court, knocking down 18 points – albeit at just 30.4 per cent from the field – as well as 14 rebounds, while Watson helped himself to a double-double of 13 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and two steals.
Sandringham Sabres (61) def. by North West Tasmania (76)
North West Tasmania made it a memorable trip across the Tasman, as the Thunder went back-to-back knocking over Sandringham Sabres to secure their second win of Round 3. The Thunder did all the damage in the first term to lead by 13 points at the first break, and whilst the Sabres fought hard after that, a 19-13 third quarter extended the lead even further for the visitors to eventually win, 76-61. Bradley Simpson top-scored with 19 points and four rebounds, while Kyle Clark (13 points, seven rebounds), Bragg (nine points, seven assists, four rebounds and two steals) and Chilcott (six points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals) were all prolific in the victory. Nicholas Gabsch had 11 points, four rebounds, two assists and two steals for the Sabres, but once again the shooting load was left to Kuany Kuany who produced 21 points – seven of 11 from the field – 10 rebounds and three assists.
Melbourne Tigers (85) def. by Hobart Chargers (108)
Rebounding from their loss the day before, Hobart Chargers took control to win in a four-quarter effort over Melbourne Tigers. The Chargers won every quarter, and scored at least 25 points in each term, securing the 108-85 victory in style. Six players notched up double-figure points, led by Mines (22 points, six rebounds and four assists), while Zachary White (18 points, seven rebounds and two assists), Matthew Young (15 points, six rebounds and two assists), Richards (14 points, six rebounds and two assists) and Stanwix (14 points, four rebounds and four assists) all contributed to the cause. For the Tigers, Willie had the 24 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks in a double-double effort, while von Hofe (18 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals) was everywhere, and Karabatsos (eight points, seven assists and six rebounds) did everything he could across the court.
Picture credit: Ian Wilson Photography