Tag: alex ducas

Aussies Abroad: Alex Ducas (Saint Mary’s Gaels)

FOLLOWING on from Kyle Bowen‘s profile of Aussies Abroad yesterday, we take a look at a teammate and fellow West Australian, Alex Ducas who has joined Bowen in the States. In fact, Ducas has a similar pathway to Bowen and the connection has continued to the fact they are running out together for Saint Mary’s Gaels in the NCAA. In his first season at the college basketball side, Ducas has averaged 3.6 points and 2.2 rebounds off 15.1 minutes.

His shooting accuracy has been impressive with his three-point attempts at 41.4 per cent and his free-throw efficiency sitting at 75 per cent. Having got on court 33 times in the 2019/20 season, Ducas has become a valuable contributor coming off the bench as a guard. His season-high came against Seattle Redhawks back in December when Ducas put up 16 points and eight rebounds. Ducas picked up double-figure points twice more for the season, with his three-point shooting an impressive aspect of his game with four from five successful makes in that win over Seattle.

Like Bowen, Ducas has already graduated through the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence, where he played 12 games in the 2019/20 National Basketball League (NBL)1 season. In that time he had 19.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.2 steals per game, showing off his three-point darts with an accuracy of 43.8 per cent. With his deadly range and an ability to go inside as well (48.5 per cent), the 198cm guard has a dual impact as a close or long-range scorer. Also like Bowen, Ducas is only in his first year as a freshman, and has three more seasons to ply his trade for St Mary’s. With so many familiar faces on the roster at the Gaels, expect Ducas to be able to continue his development there and become a strong player off the bench, particularly with more experience and minutes.

Ducas has already had international experience, spending time at the NBA Global Academy and being one of only 43 prospects who was selected to participate in the Basketball Without Borders Global Camp. At the Under 20 Australian Championships, Ducas averaged 19.5 points per game and was one of the strong performers in the green and gold, something he will likely get plenty of chances to don in the future.

Aussies Abroad: Jock Perry (Saint Mary’s Gaels)

ONE of four Australians with Saint Mary’s the past season, Jock Perry towers above the rest at a huge 216cm and 113kg. Playing at the five, Perry only just finished his Junior season so still has another year in college. While there are plenty of doubts over the immediate future of sport, the Melbourne-born center has made the most of his time off the bench for the Gaels.

Malik Fitts plays starting center for Saint Mary’s and averages 34.6 minutes per game with an average of 16.5 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.3 steals per game. This restricts the amount of playing time Perry has been able to see, recording just the 7.3 minutes per match. In that time he has averaged 3.3 points and 2.1 rebounds, which is a 40-minute average of 18 points and 11.5 rebounds. Unfortunately for Perry, Fitts is also a Junior, so the tall Australian will need to find a way to grab more minutes, or for the pair to be able to play in the same side. When on court, Perry is a reliable shooter for a big, averaging 66.7 per cent from the field, and given he did not nail a three-point attempt, that average goes up to 76.9 per cent from two-point range – the most on his side by far. He is also 81.8 per cent from the line, so when a defender tries to stop him getting to the basket, he can be reliable to sink the free-throws.

Perry has already been named as an Emerging Boomer, and provides plenty of height close to the basket. He has experience in the Big V with Melbourne Tigers so if the center was to return in the future, no doubt Melbourne United would look to try and add the developing tall onto its list. While many might struggle in unfamiliar surroundings overseas, Perry is one of four Australians on the list, with Tanner Krebs, Alex Ducas and Kyle Bowen also with the Gaels. When basketball does return, hopefully Perry can grab some extra minutes and really stake his claim in his Senior year.

NBL1 mid-season review: Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence, with the men in a good position to make finals, while the women have found form back in Round 8 and will be hoping to continue that in the run home.

Men:

Position: 7th
Wins: 7
Losses: 7

Home: 0-1
Away: 7-6
Last 10: 5-5

Points For: 1162
Points Against: 1156
Percentage: 100.5
Points: 21

Summary:

After a shaky opening round of NBL1 action, the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence steadied to post seven wins from the next 10 games to put themselves in a strong position leading into finals. They have played more than 20 players so far this season with plenty of fixturing challenges and so many road trips for the up-and-coming stars of Australian basketball. Alex Ducas has been the star with an average of 19.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.2 steals per game, while Hunter Goodrick has been strong off the boards with 12.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.4 assists. Josh Kunen is the only player on the list to have played all 14 games – the most of any player in the competition to-date. He has averaged 7.6 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game in 2019.

The run home:

R10: Frankston Blues (H)
R11: Melbourne Tigers (A) | Ringwood Hawks (A)
R12: Nil.
R13: Nil.
R14: Eltham Wildcats (A) | Hobart Huskies (A) | Southern Sabres (A)
R15: Nil.

The Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence continue their challenging fixtures, which involves three weeks off in the remaining six rounds, while having another trio of games in Round 14, and a double-up in Round 11. The fixturing itself is rather kind in the run home, with just one team – Melbourne Tigers – currently above the Centre of Excellence on the ladder, and matches against the bottom two sides. They will likely need at least four of the last six games to go in their favour to secure a spot in the top eight, but could have a nervous wait in the final round to see on other results if they have made it.

Women:

Position: 16th
Wins: 2
Losses: 12

Home: 0-1
Away: 2-11
Last 10: 2-8

Points For: 904
Points Against: 1091
Percentage: 82.9
Points: 6

Summary:

The Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence took a while, but have begun to find their grove in the season against mature-age bodies, winning two of the past three games after starting the season at 0-11. The wins have come against the side on the bottom of the ladder – Diamond Valley Eagles, and the team narrowly above the Centre of Excellence, Launceston Tornadoes. The latter was the more impressive win, travelling down to Tasmania to come home with the points. Lily Scanlon averages the most points of players with five games or more, posting up 10.3 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game, while Jade Melbourne and Adelaide Fuller have taken to the court in every match – the latter having started in every game and thus played the most matches of any player in the competition to-date. Melbourne is averaging 9.1 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game, while Fuller has recorded 6.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.0 assists per game.

The run home:

R10: Frankston Blues (H)
R11: Melbourne Tigers (A) | Ringwood Hawks (A)
R12: Nil.
R13: Nil.
R14: Eltham Wildcats (A) | Hobart Huskies (A) | Southern Sabres (A)
R15: Nil.

With just two wins from 14 games, finals is beyond the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence, but the side will hope to finish strongly after finding form in recent weeks, and have no side higher than seventh in the last couple of months, and could well take out a few surprise wins against unsuspecting opponents.

NBL1 Men’s Round 8 review: Thrillers excite fans as top sides continue winning ways

A COUPLE of one-point thrillers, including one to open the round was what National Basketball League (NBL)1 spectators were treated to in a big Round 8 of action. With 14 games played across three days, plenty of sides travelled around the southern parts of Australia, with Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE) playing three games, two in Victoria and one in Tasmania. They came away with two victories from their matches, and fell one-point short in the round opener against Diamond Valley Eagles. In that game, the Eagles took a two-point lead into half-time and then extended it to seven by the final break. The CoE roared into life in the final term, scoring 35 points to 29, but fell one point short of victory to go down, 83-82. Logan Hovey scored 29 points and had eight rebounds for the Eagles, while Ben Allen was equally impressive off the boards with 15 points and eight rebounds, as well as three assists and two steals. For the CoE, Alex Ducas again topscored with 16 points, also raking in nine rebounds, three assists and three steals. Josh Bannan and Tamuri Wigness also reached double-figure points, while Josh Kunen recorded seven rebounds for the game to go with his eight points.

In the two wins, the CoE knocked off Waverley Falcons by 28 points, before making the trip south to face North West Thunder in Tasmania, and came away with the points in a narrow 66-59 win. In the win over Waverley, Kunen had a team-high 16 points as well as four rebounds and three assists, while Blake Jones helped himself to 15 points and six rebounds. Hunter Goodrick was the star off the boards with 15 rebounds – 11 defensive. For the Falcons, Deondre McWhorter was again the standout with 19 points and five rebounds, while Bennie Lewis achieved a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds. In the victory over the Thunder, Goodrick had a best-on-court performance with a huge 23 points and 16 rebounds, while Will Tattersall was the other player to reach double figures, posting 12 points and four rebounds. For the home side, Paul Campbell recorded 15 points and nine rebounds, while Jordan Bowling and Joseph Chilcott both had 14 points and six rebounds.

The Thunder had also made the trip back home after a loss to Ballarat Miners on Saturday. The top-of-the-table Miners proved too good on their way to a 27-point win at home. Jerry Evans Jr continued his remarkable form this season with 26 points, 11 rebounds and three steals, while Deng Acuoth had 12 points and eight rebounds, and Marqueze Coleman picked up 18 points and four steals. For the Thunder, Bowling was the clear standout with 25 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two steals, while Chilcott was the other player to reach double figures with 12 points and four rebounds. In their second game for the round, Ballarat had no troubles dismissing Southern Sabres in a top-versus-bottom clash. The Miners raced to a 34-point lead by the final break, with both teams evenly matched in the last term with the game done and dusted. Coleman top scored with 22 points and six steals, while Evans Jr had 17 points and six rebounds. Acuoth finished with 13 points and seven rebounds for his efforts. Sam Short was the other standout player with 11 points, six rebounds, eight assists and three steals. For the Sabres, Nicholas Gabsch was by far the standout player, recording 24 points, nine rebounds and two assists in the loss.

After winning a thriller against the CoE, the Eagles were on the receiving end of a thrilling loss. They went down to Knox Raiders in a three-point defeat despite winning the second half by eight points. Hovey was the standout shooter with 25 points, nine rebounds, three assists and three steals, while Liam Thomas picked up a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds. For the winners, Mike Rose had a team-high 23 points as well as five rebounds, while James Hunter (11 point, 10 rebounds) and Cadarian Raines (10 points, 11 rebounds) both picked up double-doubles. Knox could not back up that winning form against Melbourne Tigers at MSAC however, going down by 13 points due to a second quarter fadeout. The Tigers scored 27-19 in the term, with each other quarter only being no more than two points difference. Mike Wells had 26 points, four rebounds, two assists and three steals, while Michael Luxford (25 points, six rebounds and eight assists) and Nic Pozoglou (18 points, 11 rebounds and five assists) were also standout players on the day. For the Raiders, Rose added another 27 points to his season tally, while Damon Heuir had 25, and Raines picked up 14 points, nine rebounds and four assists in the defeat.

The two sides chasing Ballarat Miners at the top of the table, Nunawading Spectres and Geelong Supercats both recorded solid wins, with the Spectres getting up against the Bendigo Braves 89-74, while the Supercats survived in a tight game over Dandenong Rangers. Dain Swetalla (26 points, eight rebounds) and Simon Conn (20 points, 10 rebounds) again led the way for the Spectres, while Bendigo’s Ray Turner posted 26 points, 16 rebounds and four wins in the loss. The Supercats had a big effort from Lewis Thomas (21 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals), while Demarcus Gatlin (15 points, 10 rebounds) picked up another double-double and Ma’alo Hicks had 14 rebounds, four assists and two blocks in an impressive defensive effort. For the Rangers, Dexter Kernich-Drew led the way with 16 points as well as four rebounds and two assists, while Tim Laing registered a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds.

The other one-point thriller was Frankston Blues’ 101-100 win over Ringwood Hawks. The win catapulted the Blues into the top 10, with their fifth consecutive victory. The Blues looked in firm control with an eight-point lead at the final break, but had to survive a Hawks scare who scored 25 points to 18 in the final term, only to fall one-point short. Remarkably, the Blues only won the first term, but the convincing 32-19 quarter set them up for the game. Damon Bozeman had 28 points, nine rebounds and seven assists, while Majok Majok recorded a double-double with 17 points and 12 rebounds. For the Hawks, Jacob Gibson recorded 32 points, five rebounds, three assists, three steals and two two blocks, while Matthew Fennell finished with 24 points and five rebounds.

In the remaining games, Albury Wodonga Bandits got up with a much-needed win, defeating the out-of-sorts Kilsyth Cobras, 89-86. Deba George had a day out with 37 points, four rebounds, six assists and three blocks, while Torren Jones denied the Cobras time and time agin, with 17 points, 18 rebounds – 16 defensive – and two blocks. For the Cobras, Peter Hooley had 22 points, four assists and three steals. Dandenong Rangers also knocked off Bendigo Braves to bounce back from their loss to Geelong the day before, with Sam Froling (21 points, seven rebounds two assists and two blocks) the standout player, while Matthiang Muo (25 points, six rebounds) was impressive for the Braves. Meanwhile Eltham Wildcats grabbed the points against Hobart Huskies in an 11-point win. Josh Sykes was the star for the Wildcats, finishing with 18 points and being a constant threat at both ends, taking home 15 rebounds – 14 of which were defensive. For the Huskies, Jalem Adams picked up a double-double too, with 23 points, 10 rebounds, seven steals and two blocks.

Round 8 results:

Diamond Valley Eagles 83 defeated Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 82
Geelong Supercats 74 defeated Dandenong Rangers 69
Nunawading Spectres 89 defeated Bendigo Braves 74
Knox Raiders 80 defeated Diamond Valley Eagles 77
Ballarat Miners 94 defeated North West Thunder 67
Albury Wodonga Bandits 89 defeated Kilsyth Cobras 86
Waverley Falcons 67 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 95
North West Thunder 59 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 66
Ringwood Hawks 100 defeated by Frankston Blues 101
Southern Sabres 66 defeated by Ballarat Miners 100
Melbourne Tigers 98 defeated Knox Raiders 85
Dandenong Rangers 94 defeated Bendigo Braves 76
Eltham Wildcats 82 defeated Hobart Huskies 71

NBL1 Men’s preview: Round 8

AT the now midway point of the National Basketball League (NBL)1 season, a massive Round 8 of games sees another 14 matches in the men’s competition – equal to that of the Round 6 Mother’s Day Round. In this round, Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE) play three games across two states, while North West Thunder also have a home-and-away approach over Saturday and Sunday. Diamond Valley Eagles, Knox Raiders, Ballarat Miners, Frankston Blues, Hobart Huskies, Dandenong Rangers and Bendigo Braves also all play two games in what is tipped to be a massive round of action.

The Round 8 action tips off tonight with the sixteenth placed Diamond Valley Eagles hoping to upset the inconsistent CoE. The future stars of Australian basketball have surprised plenty of teams this season, including knocking off two of the top three sides, but have also suffered some losses against lower ranked teams. Alex Ducas has been a star for the CoE, averaging 21.8 points, 3.6 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game, and he will be crucial against the Eagles, Waverley Falcons and North West Thunder. The Eagles do not have a player averaging more than 16 points per game, with Logan Hovey‘s 15.3 and 5.6 rebounds the top Eagles shooter. The CoE will have to watch out for Waverley’s Deondre McWhorter who has been an impressive star this season, posting up 20 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.2 blocks, while for the Thunder, Nick Banyard has come into his own of late, averaging 17.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists for the Tasmanian side.

A huge game to watch this round is the second placed Nunawading Spectres hosting the seventh placed Bendigo Braves. The Spectres have been shaky at home with two wins from five games, while the Braves are equally as unconvincing on the road, posting two of their four losses there, and only the one win. Simon Conn is the only player to have started in every game for the Spectres, averaging 19.9 points, 9.9 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game, while Dain Swetalla has been impressive in his nine matches, averaging 18.2 points, 10.7 rebounds and 2.3 assists across the season. Swetalla’s double-double average on court is only bettered by Ray Turner on the opposition side, with the Bendigo forward averaging 21.9 points, 12 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.3 blocks per game – ranked third for rebounds. The Braves also travel to face Dandenong Rangers on Sunday, who have five players in double-figure points, and four players averaging 4.7 rebounds or more. The Rangers have to find a way to tame Demarcus Gatlin (21.4 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 2.6 steals) and the Geelong Supercats, with the Supercats strong at home with a 4-2 record, but the Rangers are equally impressive on the road with a 3-1 record.

For the top-of-the-table Ballarat Miners, they host tenth placed North West Thunder, before a road trip to take on last placed Southern Sabres. There is a reason the Miners are top, with an impressive six players averaging double-figure points, and five players averaging at least 4.8 rebounds. Jerry Evans Jr is the top player of a competitive bunch, averaging 21.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 2.5 steals per game. Frankston Blues also have a home-and-away weekend, facing the Hobart Huskies at home on Saturday, before travelling to Ringwood on Sunday. The Blues are the most in-form team of the competition, having strung together an equal current competition-high of four consecutive wins. Damon Bozeman is one of six players to average double-figure points this season, currently posting up 19.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.7 steals per game. The Hawks are looking to make it two in a row against the Blues, with Matthew Fennell the current double-double leader at the club with 15.0 points, 10.4 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game.

The other in-form team of the competition is Melbourne Tigers, a side that has now won four consecutive games and comes into the round with a big match against fourteenth placed Knox Raiders on Sunday. The Raiders will be coming off a game against the Eagles on Saturday and keen to make it two wins for Round 8. Melbourne’s Dain Pineau‘s unbelievable form is a talking point in the competition, with the Tigers star averaging 16.8 points, 15.4 rebounds – ranked first in the league – and 2.9 assists, shading an impressive-in-its-own-right effort from Nic Pozoglou who has averaged 21.0 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.4 steals so far this season. Knox does not have a dominant shooter with no one averaging more than 15 points per game, instead relying on a team contribution and the likes of Cadarian Raines (11.3 points and 7.9 rebounds) and Mike Rose‘s (14.0 points and 6.6 rebounds) work off the boards.

In the other game, Albury Wodonga Bandits will look to turn their season around after a disappointing past month which saw them slip to thirteenth and four wins from nine games. They take on third placed Kilsyth Cobras who are also in a rut since being stunned by cellar dwellers Southern Sabres, dropping their past three matches to be 6-3. The Bandits have a top two shooter and top two rebounder at their possession with Ken-Jah Bosley (24.7 points per game) and Torren Jones (13.0 rebounds per game) the stars, while a further four players average more than 10 points per game, but two of them have played a combined eight games from four starts. Tohi Smith-Milner is the player to watch from Kilsyth, averaging a strong 15.1 points, 8.4 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game from his nine matches.

Round 8 fixtures:

Friday, May 24:

Diamond Valley Eagles (16th, 3-7) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (11th, 5-6)

Saturday, May 25:

Albury Wodonga Bandits (13th, 4-5) vs. Kilsyth Cobras (3rd, 6-3)
Ballarat Miners (1st, 7-1) vs. North West Thunder (10th, 5-4)
Frankston Blues (9th, 5-4) vs. Hobart Huskies (12th, 4-5)
Geelong Supercats (5th, 6-5) vs. Dandenong Rangers (8th, 5-5)
Knox Raiders (14th, 3-5) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (16th, 3-7)
Nunawading Spectres (2nd, 7-3) vs. Bendigo Braves (7th, 5-4)
Waverley Falcons (4th, 6-3) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (11th, 5-6)

Sunday, May 26:

Dandenong Rangers (8th, 5-5) vs. Bendigo Braves (7th, 5-4)
Eltham Wildcats (17th, 3-7) vs. Hobart Huskies (12th, 4-5)
Melbourne Tigers (6th, 6-4) vs. Knox Raiders (14th, 3-5)
North West Thunder (10th, 5-4) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (11th, 5-6)
Ringwood Hawks (15th, 3-6) vs. Frankston Blues (9th, 5-4)
Southern Sabres (18th, 2-8) vs. Ballarat Miners (1st, 7-1)

NBL1 Men’s Preview: Round 7

AFTER a massive 14 games of action over Mother’s Day Round, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 sides return to the 12 games, with six teams doubling up for two games across the weekend. After three consecutive losses, Albury Wodonga Bandits bounced back with a win and will be hoping for more of the same in their trip down south. They face the eleventh placed North West Thunder, before tackling the thirteenth placed Hobart Huskies, two teams either side of the Bandits on the ladder. Ken-Jah Bosley has been the key player so far this season for the Bandits, averaging a massive 28 points per game – the most of any player – as well as 5.7 rebounds and 2.4 assists. Remarkably, the Huskies have two players in the top five for points, with Tad Dufelmeier being a revelation in his two games since coming into the side, averaging 27 points, five assists and 3.5 rebounds, combining well with Jalen Adams (23.9 points, 7.5 assists and 2.9 steals), it is just the depth that needs to stand up.

If you want to talk depth, there is no looking past top-of-the-table Ballarat Miners, who will be favourites to show the up-and-coming Australian talent just how good they are. The Miners are undefeated from seven starts, and face Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE) with six players averaging at least 10 points per game. Jerry Evans Jr is the number one in the side, with 20 points and seven rebounds in his seven games. The talented teenagers have shown promising signs on their way to a 4-5 start to the season, but Alex Ducas is the sole player with more than 15 points per game, averaging 21.8 points and 3.6 rebounds. Hunter Goodrick and Kyle Bowen both average greater than seven rebounds per game, however. They will back up their game against the Miners, with a match against sixth placed Nunawading Spectres on Sunday. Dain Swetalla is averaging a double-double so far this season, posting 18.4 points and 10.9 rebounds per game, while teammate Simon Conn is not far behind with 18.1 and 9.6 respectively. The Spectres will also have to find a way to overcome third placed Dandenong Ranges, but the Spectres have a remarkable record on the road, not dropping a game from four starts.

Lowly placed Diamond Valley Eagles got off the bottom of the ladder courtesy of Southern Sabres having a big loss, but will be keen to formulate a win or two of their own this round. Taking on top four sides, Kilsyth Cobras and Geelong Supercats does not make it an easy task for the Eagles. Diamond Valley has struggled with assists this season, as just two players have greater than three assists, while one – Anthony Odunsi – has averaged more than 15 points (16.5) and his resume includes two games off the bench. The Eagles have had the same five starters in each of their eighth games so far this season, and only one has a field goal percentage of greater than 50 per cent. For Kilsyth, Tohi Smith-Milner is almost averaging a double-double with 16.1 points and 9.1 rebounds per game, while for Geelong Supercats, Demarcus Gatlin (22.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.8 steals) seems to be able to do it all. The Supercats also face fifth placed Melbourne Tigers and the unrelenting duo of Nic Pozoglou and Dane Pineau. Between them, the duo averages 38.8 points and 24.4 rebounds per game, and the key to victory is certainly stopping them.

Also playing two games and hopeful of getting off the bottom of the ladder is the Southern Sabres, who face fellow bottom four sides, Eltham Wildcats and Ringwood Hawks over the weekend. After a ground-breaking win over Kilsyth Cobras, the Sabres sank back with key stars David Barlow and Sam McDaniel available, and will hope to bounce back against fellow battling teams. Outside of the remarkable seasons by the duo, only three other players average more than 10 points per game. The Sabres must also try and stop Josh Sykes getting to the basket, averaging 11.8 points and 6.9 rebounds including plenty of highlight-reel dunks. The Hawks have three key players, Jacob Gibson (the points scorer), Joey Miller (the playmaker) and Matthew Fennell (the rebounder) who all have stood out in their various roles.

In other games, tenth placed Frankston Blues come into the game off a three-game hotstreak and meet fourteenth placed Knox Raiders hoping to continue that form, while a battle of seventh and eighth sees Bendigo Braves go head-to-head with Waverley Falcons on Saturday.

Round 7 fixtures:

Friday, May 17:

North West Thunder (11th, 4-4) vs. Albury Wodonga Bandits (12th, 4-3)

Saturday, May 18:

Hobart Huskies (13th, 3-5) vs. Albury Wodonga Bandits (12th, 4-3)
Ballarat Miners (1st, 7-0) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (9th, 4-5)
Bendigo Braves (7th, 5-3) vs. Waverley Falcons (8th, 5-3)
Dandenong Rangers (3rd, 5-4) vs. Nunawading Spectres (6th, 5-3)
Frankston Blues (10th, 4-4) vs. Knox Raiders (14th, 3-4)
Kilsyth Cobras (2nd, 6-2) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (17th, 2-6)
Melbourne Tigers (5th, 5-4) vs. Geelong Supercats (4th, 5-4)
Ringwood Hawks (16th, 2-6) vs. Southern Sabres (18th, 2-6)

Sunday, May 19:

Geelong Supercats (4th, 5-4) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (17th, 2-6)
Nunawading Spectres (6th, 5-3) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (9th, 4-5)
Southern Sabres (18th, 2-6) vs. Eltham Wildcats (15th, 2-7)

NBL1 Men’s round six recap: Supercats and Bandits play out thriller as Miners remain unbeaten

GEELONG Supercats’ National Basketball League (NBL)1 men’s side has survived a thrilling one-point contest with Albury Wodonga Bandits, leading the entire game before being forced to survive a massive Bandits comeback in the final term. The Supercats led by as much as nine points at the final break, but a 34-26 final term in favour of the visitors gave the home team an almighty scare before the buzzer sounded with the Supercats in front, 104-103. Demarcus Gatlin was the star, falling narrowly short of a triple-double in the win, scoring 32 points, 14 rebounds – 10 offensive – and eight assists as well as three steals. Lewis Thomas also had 23 points, eight rebounds and six assists, while Nick Owusu was also big off the boards with nine rebounds – seven defensive, five assists and 11 points. For the Bandits, Ken-Jah Bosley continued his scoring spree with another 30 points, five rebounds and two assists, while Deba George sank 24 points, three rebounds, four assists and two steals.

Unfortunately for the Supercats, they could not replicate the effort in their second game of the round, going down to Bendigo Braves by 16 points. The Braves dominated in the first and third quarters, being the ultimate difference between the two sides. Ray Turner sank 19 points and had a massive 17 rebounds – 11 defensive, four blocks and two steals to be a thorn in the Supercats’ side, while Deonte Burton was also prominent for the Braves, scoring 18 points, seven rebounds, six assists and two blocks. Daniel Hansen (17 points) and Matthew Barlett (14) were the other Braves to reach double figures. For the Supercats, Thomas was strong with a team-high 19 points, six rebounds and three assists, while Owusu had 14 points, six rebounds and two assists. Gatlin was quiet by his own lofty standards, finishing with 13 points, seven rebounds and five assists, but still had five steals.

In the Bandits’ other game, they got up over Diamond Valley Eagles, breaking away in the final term to win by six points. Bosley was strong in the forward half once again, piling on 32 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals, while George had 24 points, four rebounds and three assists. Torren Jones was the other player who stood tall with 20 points and 13 rebounds in the win. For the Eagles, Anthony Odunsi had 22 points and four assists, while Logan Hovey (20 points) and Joel Spear (17) were the other two big points scorers. The most influential rebounder was Liam Thomas with a match-high 17 rebounds, 11 of which were off the defensive board.

The loss was the second for the Eagles over the round as their slow start to the season continued, going down to Melbourne Tigers by nine points. Dane Pineau was the dominant scorer for the Tigers with 23 points, 15 rebounds and five assists, while it was to no-one’s surprise that Nic Pozoglou who picked up a double-double courtesy of 21 points and 12 rebounds. For the Eagles, Thomas had another 10 rebounds, as well as 10 points, three steals and three blocks. Darcy Harding had a team-high 15 points in the defeat, picking up seven rebounds and three assists as well, while Hovey had 13 points and nine rebounds. Meanwhile Melbourne’s second home win of the round came at the expense of Ringwood Tigers, recording a 97-82 victory. Mike Wells was the dominant shooter with 23 points, but it was Pineau (14 points, 17 rebounds, six assists and two blocks) and Pozoglou (20 points, six rebounds, four assists and three blocks) who were among the most impressive. For the Hawks, Adrien Sturt had 16 points and 10 rebounds in a double-double, while Matthew Fennell‘s 10 points and 11 rebounds was enough for him to collect one too. Jacob Gibson had an equal team-high 16 points, as well as three rebounds and three assists.

Ringwood was another side to suffer two defeats on the weekend, also going down to Waverley Falcons in a 97-86 loss at The Rings. Joey Miller did all he could with 26 points, four rebounds and two assists, while Gibson (17 points, five rebounds) and Fennell (seven points, nine rebounds and five assists) were strong around the court. For the winners, Deondre McWhorter was terrific, picking up 28 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and two blocks, while Dylan Travis had 27 points, nine rebounds and five assists to comprise a damaging duo on court for the Falcons. In the Falcons’ other win, they got up over Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE), finishing 96-69 ahead at the final buzzer. Travis was again busy with 23 points, four rebounds, seven assists and three steals, while McWhorter was huge off the boards with 12 rebounds and 16 points. Bennie Lewis (12 points, five rebounds and five assists) and Michael Harper (15 points) were others who had no trouble finding the basket. For the CoE, it was left up to Alex Ducas again as the shooter put together an 18-point, three-rebound performance, while Josh Bannan was the other double-figure scorer with 11 points and three rebounds. Josh Giddey and Will Tattersall had seven rebounds apiece in the loss.

In the CoE’s other defeat across Round 6, they went down to Knox Raiders, 82-72. Ducas was the lone dominant shooter, posting up 31 points at 64.7 per cent from the field, as well as having two rebounds, while Josh Kunen managed 11 rebounds. Hunter Goodrick (five points and seven rebounds) was the other one strong off the backboard. For the Raiders, James Hunter top-scored with 16 points and seven rebounds, while Cadarian Raines had 13 and nine in the win. Adam Thoseby (15 points, four rebounds and four assists), Damon Heuir (15 points, three rebounds and three steals) and Mike Rose (12 points, seven rebounds and three steals) were others who stood up in the win.

The Hobart Huskies tipped off the Mother’s Day weekend in style with a nine-point win over Dandenong Rangers. Tad Dufelmeier continued his great form with 24 points, six assists and two rebounds in the 96-87 win, while Jalen Adams was strong again with 19 points and six rebounds. Jacob Richards (15 points, four rebounds and six assists) and Matthew Young (13 points) were the other Huskies to reach double-figures. For the Rangers, Tim Lang led the way with scoring, sinking 19 points, six rebounds and two steals, while Keil Leaupepe scored 18 points, nine rebounds and four steals. The other Tasmanian game was better for the Rangers, storming to a 33-point win over North West Thunder. Sam Froling stood up in the win for the Rangers, posting 21 points, three rebounds and three steals, while Lucas Barker had 20 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals. Leaupepe was good off the boards with a massive game-high 16 rebounds and 16 points, while Lang had 11 points and six rebounds. For the Thunder, Tre Armstrong was busy with 23 points, two rebounds and five assists, while Jordan Bowling had 20 points, two rebounds and two assists.

The only team that remains undefeated in the competition is Ballarat Miners, stamping their authority over previous ladder leaders, Kilsyth Cobras and handing the Cobras their second consecutive loss. The Miners only led by two at the final break, but blew the margin out to 16 with a 31-17 last term. Jerry Evans Jr shot 22 points and five rebounds in the 87-71 victory, but it was Josh Fox who was best on court, snaring 18 rebounds to go with his 19 points in a terrific effort. Kuany Kuany (20 points, four rebounds) and Sam Short (16 points, five assists and four rebounds) were the other two Mineers to stand out in the win. Isaac Turner (20 points) and Peter Hooley (12 points, nine rebounds) were the two key scorers for the Cobras in a disappointing loss. In Ballarat’s other victory, they accounted for Eltham Wildcats easier, winning all four quarters on their way to a 104-80 win. Evans Jr was again busy with 14 points and five rebounds, while Deng Acuoth‘s rebounding continued with eight rebounds to go with his 14 points. Kuany topscored with 15 points and five rebounds for the Miners, while Fox had 13 points, eight rebounds and 10 assists, narrowly missing out on a triple-double. For the Wildcats, Simon Bradbury was the best with 16 points and nine rebounds, while Ben Waldren also managed 16 points.

In the other game for the round, Eltham Wildcats went down to Frankston Blues by 11 points. Geremy McKay managed 13 points and five rebounds, while Justin Aver had 13 points and two rebounds in the loss. Bradbury was again the dominant player off the boards with eight rebounds as well as 11 points and two assists, while Adam Doyle was the playmaker, picking up 10 points and 10 assists. For the Blues, Lachlan Barker had a game-high 22 points, six rebounds and three assists, while Damon Bozeman picked up 13 points, five rebounds and two steals. Daniel Trist made his debut with 11 points and seven rebounds, while Majok Majok had eight rebounds and eight points in the victory.

Round 6 results:

Hobart Huskies 96 defeated Dandenong Rangers 87
Melbourne Tigers 81 defeated Diamond Valley Eagles 72
Southern Sabres 91 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 116
Geelong Supercats 104 defeated Albury Wodonga Bandits 103
Frankston Blues 86 defeated Eltham Wildcats 75*
Kilsyth Cobras 71 defeated by Ballarat Miners 87
Knox Raiders 82 defeated Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 72
North West Thunder 76 defeated by Dandenong Rangers 109
Ringwood Hawks 86 defeated by Waverley Falcons 97
Bendigo Braves 96 defeated Geelong Supercats 80
Diamond Valley Eagles 89 defeated by Albury Wodonga Bandits 95
Waverley Falcons 96 defeated Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 69
Eltham Wildcats 80 defeated by Ballarat Miners 104
Melbourne Tigers 97 defeated Ringwood Hawks 82

NBL1 Men’s Preview: Round 6

A MASSIVE top-of-the-table clash highlights the biggest round in National Basketball League (NBL)1 history on Saturday, as Kilsyth Cobras having won six of the seven games thus far, take on the undefeated Ballarat Miners who are five from five and fresh off a smashing of Albury Wodonga Bandits. The Cobras had a shock loss to Southern Sabres last round and will be keen to bounce back, but the game is just one of 14 across the competition, the most for the season. Peter Hooley is a player to watch for the Cobras, averaging 19.3 points, 5.6 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game, while for the Miners, Jerry Evans Jr is averaging 20.8 points, 9.8 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 2.0 assists per game.

Friday night under lights will see Hobart Huskies hosting Dandenong Rangers. The Huskies won their last clash, while Dandenong dropped its last game, but the Rangers will head in as favourites given their depth across the court. A lot of the workload for the Huskies falls on Jalen Adams (24.6 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.1 steals and 1.7 assists), however the introduction of Tad Dufelmeier (30 points, four assists and one steal on debut) could be the injection of talent needed for the Huskies who are still 2-5 from seven games. The Rangers will need to back-up from that game with a Saturday match against North West Thunder as part of the two-game Tasmanian road trip. Lucas Barker ( 17.1 points, 4.0 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.7 steals per game) and Sam Froling (15.3 points, 7.3 rebounds per game) have been two players standing out so far this season for the Rangers. Nick Banyard has been on fire lately for the Thunder, averaging 18.1 points, 7.9 rebounds and 2.7 assists, with the Thunder inside the top eight now.

After Ballarat’s first game against Kilsyth, they have to face Eltham Wildcats with the Wildcats not only facing the Miners, but Frankston Blues as well over the weekend. Grandy Glaze has been enormous on the glass averaging 11.5 rebounds – ranked third in the league – as well as 16.8 points. Frankston Blues have their own star rebounder with Majok Majok averaging 10.3 rebounds as well as 12.7 points. Elsewhere on Saturday, Geelong Supercats going up against a vengeful Albury Wondonga Bandits will be an entertaining game. Ken-Jah Boseley (26.8 points, 5.8 rebounds) was held to his lowest scoring game of the season last match in the Bandits’ huge loss to the Miners and will be keen to bounce back, while the Supercats have an even spread across the team and are in the log-jam of teams looking to break free from the pack. Demarcus Gatlin is the player to watch, averaging 22.1 points, 7.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.0 steals per game.

Another side that plays two matches across the weekend is Waverley Falcons, coming up against Ringwood Hawks on Saturday, and Basketball Centre of Excellence (CoE) on Sunday. The Falcons sit balanced at 3-3 in eleventh, but would be hoping to bounce back after two losses last round at home. Deondre McWhorter has been in superb form for the Falcons, averaging 19.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game, and will be keen to continue that form across the weekend. The Hawks have struggled of late, and look to Jacob Gibson on the scoring end, who is ranked sixth in the competition for points, averaging 22.3 per game. Likewise the CoE have a standout shooter in Alex Ducas (ninth in NBL1), averaging 21.0 points per game. The CoE also take on Knox Raiders the day before who are hoping to build on their last round win.

A team in form after having a horror start to the season is Diamond Valley Eagles, who have won their past two games after losing their opening four matches. The Eagles have struggled to score and average the second least points for this season. They have Joel Spear who is averaging 13.7 points per game, as well as 4.7 rebounds and 4.3 assists. They face Melbourne Tigers who have Nic Pozoglou in their line-up, ranked fifth for points and eleventh for rebounds in the competition, helping himself to 22.6 points and 9.4 rebounds so far in season 2019. The Eagles will need to contain him if they are to be any chance of victory. The Tigers will also take on Ringwood Hawks on the Sunday in what could be a percentage-boosting weekend coming up against the bottom two sides. The Eagles also face the Bandits in another tough match for them this weekend.

In the other games, Southern Sabres fresh off their upset win over Kilsyth Cobras take on Nunawading Spectres, with David Barlow the main man in form. Ranked equal third in the competition for points, Barlow has averaged 24.6 points as well as 9.8 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. The battle against Dain Swetalla off the boards could be interesting with Swetalla averaging 10.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 18.7 points. Meanwhile Bendigo Braves take on Geelong Supercats in the final game of the round, with Bendigo on a hot streak winning its past three matches, hoping to jump ahead of Geelong with the win.

NBL1 Men’s Fixtures:

Friday, May 10:

Hobart Huskies (13th, 2-5) vs. Dandenong Rangers (5th, 4-3)

Saturday, May 11:

Frankston Blues (9th, 3-4) vs. Eltham Wildcats (14th, 2-5)
Geelong Supercats (4th, 4-3) vs. Albury Wodonga Bandits (12th, 3-2)
Kilsyth Cobras (1st, 6-1) vs. Ballarat Miners (2nd, 5-0)
Knox Raiders (16th, 2-4) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (6th, 4-3)
Melbourne Tigers (10th, 3-4) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (18th, 2-4)
North West Thunder (8th, 4-3) vs. Dandenong Rangers (5th, 4-3)
Ringwood Hawks (17th, 2-4) vs. Waverley Falcons (11th, 3-3)
Southern Sabres (15th, 2-5) vs. Nunawading Spectres (3rd, 4-3)

Sunday, May 12:

Melbourne Tigers (10th, 3-4) vs. Ringwood Hawks (17th, 2-4)
Bendigo Braves (7th, 4-3) vs. Geelong Supercats (4th, 4-3)
Diamond Valley Eagles (18th, 2-4) vs. Albury Wondonga Bandits (12th, 3-2)
Eltham Wildcats (14th, 2-5) vs. Ballarat Miners (2nd, 5-0)
Waverley Falcons (11th, 3-3) vs. Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (6th, 4-3)

NBL1 Men’s round four recap: Cobras streak away at the top as two games go to overtime

KILSYTH Cobras have extended their National Basketball League (NBL)1 unbeaten streak to six as they move two wins clear of Ballarat Miners – the only other undefeated side. In other results, Ringwood Hawks overcame Eltham Wildcats in a double-overtime victory, while Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE) knocked off title contender, Albury Wodonga Bandits, and North West Thunder won a high-scoring thriller, 121-116.

The Cobras claimed wins against Geelong Supercats and Melbourne Tigers over the weekend in two impressive performances. In the first game, Kilsyth led from start to finish, shaking off Geelong in the second half after leading by six points at half-time. The Cobras scored 41 points to 30 in the last half to run out 95-78 winners. Peter Hooley had a standout game for the winner, recording 21 points, six assists and three rebounds, while Chris Patton also managed 21 points, while also collecting four rebounds and four assists. Every Cobras player recorded at least two rebounds in an even spread, with Sean MacDonald (eight as well as nine points), and Felix Van Hofe (six and six) leading the way. For the Supercats, Demarcus Gatlin was unstoppable with 34 points, 11 rebounds – eight defensive – and three steals, but it was not enough to get his side over the line. Anthony Williams (15 points) and Ma’alo Hicks (13 points, eight rebounds and four assists) were others who reached double-figure points. In the Cobras other win, they also shook off the Tigers in the second half, scoring 45 points to 30 after leading by just five at the main break. Tohi Smith-Milner was the star with 18 points, 13 rebounds and four assists, while Hooley again equal top-scored with 18 points, three rebounds, four assists and one steal. Patton (14 points and 11 rebounds) and Owen Odigie (16 points and eight rebounds) were others who impressed for the winners. For Melbourne, Nic Pozoglou continued his unbelievable season form with 28 points, 14 rebounds – 13 defensive – and two steals, while Mike Wells (13 points) and Michael Luxford (11 points) were others who reached double-figure points.

Melbourne Tigers did not have a great weekend, going down to Dandenong Rangers away as well in a 40-point defeat. The Rangers shut down Pozoglou who scored just the 12 points, seven rebounds and three assists in the loss, with the points more evenly spread from the losing side. Maxwell Vitala scored a team-high 14 points, as well as three rebounds and three assists, while Van Merbin had 11 points and seven rebounds. Mike Wells (11 points) and Derrick McDonald (10) were other top scorers for the Tigers. For the dominant Rangers, they also had a spread of scorers with a massive six players scoring 10 or more points. Sam Froling was the biggest scorer with 17 points, seven rebounds and two assists, while Tim Lang (16 points, five rebounds and two assists) and Tyler Robertson (16 points, three rebounds) were also busy. Matt Kenyon recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while Declan Soukup set up his teammates with eight assists. It was the second win across the weekend for the Rangers who knocked off Frankston Blues last Wednesday night. The Rangers trailed at quarter and half-time but put together a 20-11 third term to lead by five at the final break and eventually recorded and 11-point win. Keil Leaupepe had a game-high 25 points, nine rebounds and two assists in a big game, while Lucas Barker finished with 17 points, two rebounds and three assists. Froling assisted off the boards with eight rebounds and 14 points, while Lang was the main creator in the forward half with four assists as well as 11 points and three rebounds. For Frankston, Najeal Young scored 22 points, five rebounds and four steals, while Igor Hadziomerovic had the 16 points, four rebounds, five assists and two steals in a great all-round game. Damon Bozeman was the other player who featured highly on the scoresheet with 13 points.

The Basketball Australia CoE have been inconsistent given the average age of the side, but their performance against Albury Wodonga Bandits opened eyes, handing the previously undefeated Bandits a loss with a stunning final term. Trailing by 10 points at half-time and three points at the final break, the CoE powered home in the last term to score 24 points to 16 on their way to a 94-89 victory. Alex Ducas had 26 points, three rebounds and two assists, while Hunter Goodrick was the standout player with 18 points, 12 rebounds – 10 defensive – and two blocks. Isaiah Lee also had an impressive game, registering 14 points, three rebounds and four assists. For the Bandits, Ken-Jah Bosley‘s unbelievable season continued, posting a round-high 40 points as well as seven rebounds – six defensive and an assist. Torren Jones was remarkable off the boards with 20 points and 16 rebounds, and Deba George scored 17 points, four assists, three steals and two assists, but the trio scored 77 of the team’s 89 points. The luck was not on the CoE’s side earlier in the round, going down to Geelong Supercats in a heartbreaking one-point loss. Leading by 14 points at half-time, the young stars tied with the Supercats piling on 26 points to nine in the third term to survive in a 73-72 win. Ducas and Goodrick were again prominent, recording 19 points and five rebounds each, while Lee posted 15 points, five rebounds and four assists in the narrow defeat. Will Tattersall was the other big performer with 13 points and five rebounds. For the winners, Gatlin was again busy with 21 points, four rebounds, four assists and three steals, leading the way from Williams (18 points, five rebounds) and Lewis Thomas (13 points, seven rebounds, three assists and five steals).

The Hobart Huskies had a weekend to forget in their trip to Victoria, losing to previously winless Southern Sabres and Diamond Valley Eagles. The Sabres never looked like losing in the match, opening up a 22-point lead at the final change before the Huskies piled on 31 points to 19 in the final term to cut the final deficit to 10. Jalen Adams did all he could for the Huskies with 28 points, six rebounds and three steals, but with Jacob Richards (17 points and two assists) the only other player reaching double-figure points, it was difficult for the visitors. David Barlow was prominent in tandem with Sam McDaniel as the damaging Sabres duo helped themselves to a combined 50 points, 12 rebounds and four steals, while Barlow showed his playmaking abilities with a game-high seven assists. Kingsley Box posted 17 points for the winners, as well as seven rebounds and three assists, while Jayden Weldon and Rhys Carter had a combined 24 points, eight assists and five rebounds. Against the Eagles, the Huskies again had to play catch up, trailing by 18 points at the half. The Huskies made up ground to cut the final break deficit to six, but could not catch the home side, going down 97-88. Adams had another huge game for the losing side with 31 points, seven rebounds and seven steals, while Matthew Young recorded 16 points as the next highest scorer. The Eagles shared the load across the team with Liam Thomas having a double-double with 27 points and 14 rebounds, while Logan Hovey sank 25 points and seven rebounds. Darcy Harding (17 points, four rebounds and two assists) and Matt Reynolds (10 points, five assists).

Ballarat Miners remained undefeated with a big win over Knox Raiders, 90-68 at the State Basketball Centre on Saturday night. Sam Short led the Miners’ scoring with 18 points, as well as four rebounds and four assists, while Josh Fox and Jerry Evans Jnr feasted off the boards. Both had 16 points by the end of the night, as Evan Jnr helped himself to 14 rebounds, and Fox registered 10. Marqueze Coleman was also busy on the night with 16 points, five rebounds and four assists. For the Raiders, James Hunters scored a team-high 16 points to go with six rebounds, while Damon Heuir and Mike Rose both had 11 points and seven rebounds, and Simon Grant helped himself to 11 point ands six rebounds.

While the Blues lost their first game of the round to Dandenong, they bounced back with an upset win over Nunawading Spectres, handing the Spectres their second loss of the season. Majok Majok was prominent with 18 points, six rebounds and two assists in the 86-73 win, while Young was huge off the back boards with 12 rebounds as well as 15 points and four steals. Bozeman and Hadziomerovic were also among the top scorers, posting 17 points and six rebounds apiece, while combining for three steals. Barker had the 12 points, six rebounds and three assists in the win. For Nunawading, Costa Hronopoulos finished with a game-high 21 points, five rebounds and two assists, while Simon Conn (16 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks) had a consistent performance once again. Dain Swetalla almost recorded a double-double with 12 points and nine rebounds, as well as five assists, but could not help the Spectres get the points in the win.

The most thrilling match of the round occurred at The Rings between Ringwood Hawks and Eltham Wildcats with the Hawks taking the game in a 112-106 double-overtime win. Leading by five at the first break, the Hawks found themselves nine behind by the main break, then hit the front by one at the last change, only for Eltham to catch them in a high scoring final term to level the scores at 81 points apiece. It took two overtimes, but eventually the Hawks took home the win in front of a home crowd by six points. Jacob Gibson landed 32 points for the Hawks, as well as three rebounds, two assists and three steals, while Matthew Fennell finished with 21 points and 14 rebounds in a terrific double-double effort; also recording four assists and two blocks. Joey Miller and Adrien Sturt also had unbelievable games, registering 14 points apiece, as Miller also had 14 assists and Sturt recorded nine rebounds.

The other overtime game of the round with a high scoring thriller between North West Thunder and Waverley Falcons, with the visiting Tasmanian team getting a win on the road, 121-116. They looked to have the game in the bag with an 11-point lead at three quarter time, only for the Falcons to storm home with a 28-17 final quarter and level the scores. Luckily the Thunder managed to score 19-14 in overtime to still record a memorable win. Lachlan Dent had a day out with 36 points, four rebounds, eight assists and two steals for the Thunder, while Tre Armstrong continued his great season form with 21 points, eight rebounds, three assists and three steals. Jordan Bowling (16 points, 10 rebounds) and Nick Banyard (14 points, six rebounds) also stood tall while Paul Jackson was huge with 13 points and 11 rebounds. For the Falcons, Chris Arkell and Bennie Lewis shared in 51 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists, while Dylan Travis registered 19 points, three rebounds, three assists and two steals.

In the remaining game of the round, Bendigo Braves toppled North West Thunder, giving the Thunder a 1-1 record over Round 4. Ray Turner led the way for the Braves in the 93-76 win in what proved to be a topsy-turvy momentum-swinging match. Turner scored 32 points and 15 rebounds in a massive performance, while Deonte Burton had 15 points and 10 assists to also record a double-double. Matthew Andronicos (13 points, three rebounds) and Daniel Hansen (11 points, four rebounds) were also prominent for the winning side. For the Thunder, Banyard was the top scorer with 13 points, seven rebounds and three assists, while Armstrong (12 points, four rebounds and three assists) and Dent (11 points, five rebounds) were again among the Thunder’s best.

Round 4 results:

Frankston Blues 74 defeated by Dandenong Rangers 85
Basketball Centre of Excellence 72 defeated by Geelong Supercats 73
Geelong Supercats 78 defeated by Kilsyth Cobras 95
Dandenong Rangers 106 defeated Melbourne Tigers 66
Southern Sabres 107 defeated Hobart Huskies 97
Bendigo Braves 93 defeated North West Thunder 76
Nunawading Spectres 73 defeated by Frankston Blues 86
Knox Raiders 68 defeated by Ballarat Miners 90
Ringwood Hawks 112 defeated Eltham Wildcats 106
Albury Wodonga Bandits 89 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 94
Diamond Valley Eagles 97 defeated Hobart Huskies 88
Kilsyth Cobras 92 defeated Melbourne Tigers 72
Waverley Falcons 116 defeated by North West Thunder 121

NBL 1 Preview: Round 4

ROUND 4 of the National Basketball League (NBL) Men’s 1 sees both the Diamond Valley Eagles and Southern Sabres by vying for their first win of the season in hope to kick start their campaign. The Eagles are set to face off against the 14th placed Hobart Huskies who have won two of their four games so far. Basketball Australia CoE will have the chance to win two games this round playing both Thursday and Saturday along with the Frankston Blues and Dandenong Rangers.

The Kilsyth Cobras will be looking to continue their winning streak with a victory against the lower ranked Melbourne Tigers and Geelong Supercats. Top of the table, Nunawading Spectres will also want to maintain their spot and claim another win over the weekend against Frankston. The Frankston Blues are set to host the Dandenong Rangers, Knox Raiders to play Ballarat Miners and the Ringwood Hawks facing off against the Eltham Wildcats. Some key players to watch throughout the round is Melbourne Tigers scoring machine Nic Pozoglou who tops the table with 106 points so far this season, closely followed by Basketball Australia CoE guard Alex Ducas with 104. Expect big games from Dain Swetella from the Nunawading Spectres and Bendigo Braves’ Ray Turner who have been prolific.

In Round 4 of the National Basketball League (NBL) 1 Women’s, the Bendigo Braves will want to flex their muscles and continue their unbeaten start to the season against the Launceston Tornadoes. The Dandenong Rangers are also pushing to maintain their second position on the ladder.

Having lost all of their games so far Basketball Australia CoE will be hoping to pull out all of the stops and claim their first win of the year. CoE have two opportunities to get their first points on the board with matches against Geelong and Albury. The Diamond Valley Eagles have had an up and down start to the season and are set to face the higher placed Hobart Huskies on Sunday. Look out for Bendigo Braves duo Gabrielle Richards and Kelly Wilson, who have scored 102 and 96 points respectively. Both have been hard to stop in recent weeks with Diamond Valley Eagles also reaping the rewards of Anneli Maley who has been solid across the court.

NBL 1 Round 4 fixture:

Wednesday, April 24

Frankston Blues vs. Dandenong Rangers

Thursday, April 25

Basketball Australia CoE vs. Geelong Supercats

Saturday, April 27

Albury Wodonga Bandits vs. Basketball Australia CoE
Bendigo Braves vs. NW Tasmania/Launceston Tornadoes
Dandenong Rangers vs. Melbourne Tigers
Geelong Supercats vs. Kilsyth Cobras
Knox Raiders vs. Ballarat Miners/Rush
Nunawading Spectres vs. Frankston Blues
Ringwood Hawks vs. Eltham Wildcats
Southern Sabres vs. Hobart Huskies

Sunday, April 28

Kilsyth Cobras vs. Melbourne Tigers
Diamond Valley Eagles vs. Hobart Huskies
Waverly Falcons vs. NW Tasmania/Launceston Tornadoes