DESPITE being seven rounds into the season, the title favouritism has never been less clear, with four sides in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Watson Pool having won five games, leaving just percentage separating them. In the Ashe Pool, Kilsyth Cobras is three points clear, but Bulleen Boomers and Werribee Devils are also at 5-2 in what is an entertaining season thus far.
Hawthorn Magic 61 defeated by Knox Raiders 71
Casey Cavaliers 60 drew with Ringwood Hawks 60
Nunawading Spectres 68 defeated Ballarat Miners 61
Korumburra Wildcats 70 defeated by Diamond Valley Eagles 78
Melbourne Tigers 59 defeated by Keilor Thunder 64
The Watson Pool is as close as it gets at this stage of the season, with four sides on a 5-2 record after seven games, and that was reflected in the results with every game decided by 10 points or less. Melbourne Tigers suffered their first loss to Keilor Thunder in a nail-biting 64-59 match at MSAC. The Tigers dominated early to race to a 10-point lead but the Thunder pegged them back and hit the front in the third term and then held on to win, and draw equal first. Paul Tsapatolis continued his great season form leading the way with another 23 points, while for the Tigers, Josh Giddey sank 15.
Meanwhile the closest game in a round of thrillers was a Casey Cavailiers and Ringwood Hawks draw. The Cavailiers led by four at the final break, but the Hawks clawed their way back in the final term, scoring 25 points to 21 to level the scores by the final buzzer at 60-apiece. Liam Ingram (17 points) and Kobe Miles (13) were the key scorers for the home side, while for the Hawks, Thomas Lock (19), Harrison Sealey (14) and Alan Ure (13) were all productive. Elsewhere, Diamond Valley Eagles snapped Korumburra Wildcats’ four-game winning streak in a 78-70 victory after a superb 22-11 final term to run over the top of the home side. Ky Cargin was one of four players to reach double figures for the Eagles, while Christian D’Angelo (20 points) led the scoring on the night for the Wildcats, also one of four to reach double figures. In other results, Nunawading Spectres defeated Ballarat Miners by seven points, and Knox Raiders kept Hawthorn Magic winless for another week in a 71-61 win.
Waverley Falcons 58 defeated Eltham Wildcats 47
Bendigo Braves 57 defeated Dandenong Rangers 52
Geelong Supercats 46 defeated by Bulleen Boomers 92
Collingwood All Stars 53 defeated by Kilsyth Cobras 70
Dandenong Rangers 2 54 defeated by Werribee Devils 74
In the Ashe Pool, Bulleen Boomers remarkable form continued with a 92-46 thrashing of Geelong Supercats. Nicholas Woodall had a day out with 36 points, while Owen Foxwell (19) and Thomas Giannatos (18) were strong for the Boomers. Kade McKenzie (16 points) was the top scorer in the losing side. Kilsyth Cobras remain in control at the top of the table, bouncing back from a draw to record a closer than expected 17-point win over Collingwood All Stars. David Okwera sank 24 points, while Lachlan Vandervorm managed 12 for the winners, as All Stars shooter Lachlan McKain recorded 15. In the closest game of the round, Bendigo Braves knocked off Dandenong Rangers by five points, handing the Rangers their third consecutive loss. The Braves trailed by two points at the final break before powering home with a 16-9 final quarter. Caleb Connick was busy once again for the Braves with 14 points, while Dyson Daniels managed 11. Riley Simmons (17 points) and Marcus Windhager (11) were the top scorers for the Rangers. In other results, Werribee Devils knocked off Dandenong Rangers 2 by 20 points, while Waverley Falcons were too good for Eltham Wildcats, recording an 11-point win.