BRISBANE Capitals pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the competition toppling the ladder leaders RedCity Roar after being down at three quarter time in the grand final. Only eight points separated the two sides at the final break testament to the high intensity battle out on court as both sides hustled to claim that all elusive championship (97-89). It was a game of inches with both sides firing at different stages and forcing the momentum to swing back and forth before the Capitals landed the final blow with a mind boggling final term of basketball. The game was dictated by key players from each side stepping up to the plate and delivering to keep their side in the hunt and prove their stakes on the game.
After a blistering start, RedCity seemed to have the game in the bag pushing out to a 13-point lead however the Capitals were not about to lie down upping the ante in the second term to reduce the margin and stay in touching distance, down by four points at the main break. The premiership quarter saw the Roar make their move piling on 31 points to 23 to further extend their lead and create some solid separation and edge closer to the championship. But much like the tale before, Brisbane threw everything they had at the ladder leaders, going on a scoring spree to amass a whopping 37 points and stop the Roar in their tracks. Their dominant quarter of play saw them run out with the win and subsequently the silverware to match in a hotly contested battle.
Statistically speaking it is almost impossible to differentiate between the two sides however the Capitals held a narrow lead when it came to three point accuracy compared to the Roar (31 per cent to 30 per cent) and inside the paint 51 per cent compared to 48. The Capitals also impressed from the charity stripe nailing eight of their 11 attempts at 72 per cent while the Roar only managed to sink nine of their 15 shots at 60 per cent. RedCity led the charge when it came to blocks (8-3) and steals (11-3) highlighting their ability to get hands to ball and stop the Capitals in their tracks. The turnover count was about even with the Roar notching up 15, one less than the Capitals with 16 while rebounds told a similar story (43-44) respectively as the Capitals ran out victorious in a tight tussle.
It is hard to go past the efforts of Jason Cadee who seemed to have his own ball out on court for the Capitals starring with a whopping 39 points. Cadee made his presence felt out on court sinking six triples at 46.2 per cent from beyond the arc, while in close he managed 51.9 per cent showcasing his ability to impact the scoreboard with great ease while also dragging in eight rebounds and collecting seven assists. He was well aided by the services of Jarred Bairstow who showcased his ability to turn it on when it counted to get his side over the line and claim an impressive win. Bairstow recorded a double-double for his efforts with 21 points and 13 rebounds to his name, while Nicholas Stoddart was the only other Capitals player to reach double figures with 13 points.
Much like the Capitals, the Roar relied on a couple of key players to step up to the plate and lead the way and that is exactly what William McDowell-White did. McDowell-White was crucial for the Roar finding the basket with relative ease to nail 30 points the second most behind Cadee in what was a dominant display in a losing side. He sunk four triples and managed seven assists while Heath Gameren shone bright for the Roar to collect 23 points and four assists off the back of a quiet performance the night before. Harry Froling was also amongst the best for RedCity notching up a huge double-double thanks to an impressive 25 rebounds – 19 of them defensive – and 20 points to cap off a stellar season, albeit without the silverware to show for it.
Picture: Brad Anderson