Tag: georgia kitchell

2020 MUVJBL U18 Boys/Girls Round 2 preview: Undefeated Wildcats and Raiders to battle it out

ROUND 2 of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Boys Championship Division is set to be a big one with Eltham, Coburg, Bulleen, Diamond Valley and Knox all looking to win their second consecutive games.

In the final game of the Ashe Pool on Friday night, Eltham and Knox are set to do battle with both sides sitting at a win apiece and looking to keep their undefeated record intact. Although it is only Round 2 a hot start can all but set up a successful campaign for the year something both sides will be keen to grasp. Eltham currently sits in second place thanks to a percentage boosting performance last round while Knox have fifth spot sewn up and will be hoping to improve their positioning with a win. Eltham’s ability to score beyond the arc is a key component of their game sinking seven three-pointers last week a feat they will be hoping to replicate once again to get the win over Knox. But the Raiders are pretty handy in the same department making 10 three-pointers last week meaning this game could quite easily turn into a shoot off given Knox have shown just how easily they can apply scoreboard pressure.

In what could arguably be the game of the round, expect Thomas Stockwell and Fletcher Parkinson to come up big in front of a home crowd. The Eltham duo brought out the party tricks last round with 16 and 14 points respectively showcasing just how damaging they can be when on song. Stockwell starred from the three-point range with three maximums while Harrison Stones was the next closest with two three-pointers. Throw in contributions from the likes of Patrick Dozzi and the Wildcats have plenty of potential and could down Knox if they get their game plan flowing early.

For the Raiders, they had four players reach double digits last round, and if they bring that same scoreboard intensity could rattle Eltham and notch up their second win of the year. Jordan Anderson led from the front in Round 1 finishing with 16 points, he did get himself into some personal foul trouble however, racking up four fouls and will have to address that this round to ensure he can have a full quarter impact. Jyelin Moli was close behind in the scoring department with 15 points for his efforts. But the scoring options do not stop there with Ethan Taylor and Harry Johnson knocking back 11 points apiece displaying just how much depth Knox have when it comes to scoring prowess.

In other matches, Bulleen will be hoping to make it two on the trot with a win against Camberwell to kick start the season while Diamond Valley are in the same boat up against Coburg. Early wins on the board for both sides will give them early ascendancy while the battle between Geelong United and Ringwood will result in one side getting their first win on the board. In the only other game in the Ashe Pool, Dandenong will take on Eltham 2. Switching conferences and the first-place Nunawading are set to lock horns with Hawthorn while Bendigo and Pakenham are looking for their first win. Keilor and Ballarat face off with Melbourne and McKinnon also vying off for the win. The last game of the round is between Waverley and Kilsyth.

Fixtures Round 2:

Ashe Pool:

Camberwell v. Bulleen
Geelong United v. Ringwod
Coburg v. Diamond Valley
Dandenong v. Eltham 2
Eltham v. Knox

Watson Pool:

Bendigo v. Pakenham
Hawthorn v. Nunawading
Keilor v. Ballarat
Melbourne v. McKinnoneltham
Waverley v. Kilsyth

IN a battle of third versus fourth the clash between Diamond Valley and Hawthorn will help to give one side the upper hand early with two wins on the trot. The Eagles put on a clinic last round with a 35-point drubbing of McKinnon sending an early warning shot to the rest of the competition while Hawthorn also plied their trade with a solid 18-point victory. Despite going quiet in the second and third terms Hawthorn managed to string together a dominant win and will know that they have the firepower to wreak havoc once again however, Diamond Valley got better as the game went on scoring a whopping 42 points in the second half making for a tantalising match-up. The home sides three-point shooting is one to be impressed with while Hawthorn is just as effective.

Three players reached double digits for the Eagles with Sophie Burrows proving to be the most dominant of the lot with 17 points. If Burrows can duplicate that form in Round 2 given her ability to back herself from beyond the arc and skill to do damage in the paint she could put her side in good stead. Along with Burrows both Jade Dunne and Imogen Rock are viable options to the basket coming off a 14-point showing last round an effort they will be hoping to repeat. Georgia Kitchell should not be underestimated able to chime in on the scoreboard and will be looking to have more of an impact this match.

On the other hand, Hawthorn haS a couple of key cogs when it comes to scoring with the load shared between Nikki Stanic, Emma Gebert and Amy O’Hara. The trio did the bulk of the shooting and if are kept under control in their Round 2 clash the Magic could struggle to get the win. Stanic managed a team-high 14 points last round while Gebert 11 and O’Hara 10 also played their part but will have to up the ante against a high scoring opposition. Solid performances from the likes of Ally Marshall and Sophie Palmer will also assist in notching up their second win.

In other games, Ballarat play host to the bottom placed Geelong United, while the first versus second in the Kilsyth and Nunawading clash will draw plenty of attention. Bulleen and McKinnon face off with Waverley and Keilor set to cap off the round for the Watson Pool. On the other hand, Dandenong and Melbourne kick things off for the Ashe Pool with Ringwood welcoming Nunawading 2. Expect the clash between Broadmeadows and Altona to be interesting with Frankston up against it in their Round 2 draw against Sandringham. Knox play the bottom placed Eltham in hope to secure their first win of the season.


Ashe Pool:

Dandenong v. Melbourne
Ringwood v. Nunawading
Broadmeadows v. Altona
Frankston v. Sandringham
Knox v. Eltham

Watson Pool:

Ballarat v. Geelong United
Diamond Valley v. Hawthorn
Kilsyth v. Nunawading
Bulleen v. McKinnon
Waverley v. Keilor

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC preview: Round 9

THE Knox Raiders and Bulleen Boomers will headline Round 9 of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Girls Championship Division in what could be a preview for the Grand Final. The match-up between Geelong and Southern Peninsula also looks to be a crucial contest, with a win necessary to their finals hopes.

Knox Raiders (2nd, 13-3-1) vs Bulleen Boomers (1st, 14-3)

The Knox Raiders will open Round 9 against top-end rivals, Bulleen Boomers, in a game that could present as a foretaste for the Grand Final. In terms of success, the Raiders’ last fortnight has been less than ideal, having recorded a 51-55 loss to Diamond Valley before tying with the fourteenth-placed, Geelong Supercats. In comparison, Bulleen’s last month has been faultless. Besides recording four consecutive wins, Bullen have made short work of Dandenong and Bulleen, as well as assumed top-spot one week out of finals. Olivia Tsantarlis and Casey Valenti-Paea were standout in Bulleen’s last outing, recording 16 and 14 points respectively. Valenti-Paea moved to sixth spot for points per game (PPG) following her performance, while Alexandra Keating continues to hold in second (17 PPG). For Knox, Zoe Jenkins(16) and Rhiannon Ockwell (15) were big in last week’s draw and will be expected to maintain form as they attempt to hold their top-two spot.

Geelong Supercats (14th, 7-9-1) vs Southern Peninsula (13th, 8-9)

One spot remains as we lead into finals, with the Geelong Supercats hosting the Southern Peninsula. Both sides sit at the bottom of the table, having shown little success since the division separation. Given their positions, Geelong’s 5-2-1 home record threatens the Peninsula’s chances. In recent weeks, both outfits have lifted on form, with Southern Peninsula recording consecutive wins, which include fair scalps over Hawthorn and Bendigo. Similarly, Geelong presented well against the Raiders, tying with the top-end team and likely instilling confidence. NBL1 representatives, Carly Remmos and Alishia Knights, presented well in Geelong’s draw; recording 14 and 13 points respectively. The pair match-up on Emirson Devenie and Charli Dobson this week, who both sit higher on the table for league-average with 15.5 and 13.6. Last week, Devenie recorded 25 points on her way to a four-point victory over Hawthorn. The Geelong star moves to third on the table as we lead into tomorrow’s game.

Dandenong Rangers (7th, 11-6) vs Nunawading Spectres (4th, 12-5)

With a second a chance still available for the Dandenong Rangers, it presents a lot to gain when they host the Nunawading Spectres on Friday. Prior to last week’s loss, Dandenong was stnading strong having recorded five consecutive wins after two narrow losses in the opening rounds. For Nunawading, the last two weeks have been disappointing, losing two consecutive to Bulleen and Altona. Dandenong will look to NBL1 representative, Elly Morgan, to continue her form recording 12, 19 and 16 in her last three outings. Hannah Rapp and Leia Hanafin have also presented well recently recording 13 and 11 in their win over Knox. Comparatively, the Spectres boast top league scorer, Louisa Fakalata, who averages 19.1 PPG in the Championship Division, along with Maddison Zugna who averages 11.9.

Hawthorn Magic (9th, 8-7-2) vs Diamond Valley Eagles (11th, 8-8-1)

The Hawthorn Magic desperately need to return to the winner’s list when they host the Diamond Valley Eagles, with loser of this match-up potentially missing out on finals. Currently, the Eagles sit on five consecutive losses, slipping further down in form and on the table as we approach finals. Diamond Valley took a big loss on the road last week against Bendigo, worsening their abysmal away record (2-6). Similarly, Hawthorn’s success at home has been underwhelming at 3-4-1, so it is difficult to pick a winner in this contest. For Hawthorn, Ryleh Killian has been in solid form, averaging 14.3 PPG for seven outings. Last week, Georgia Gray and Ella Crump recorded 17 and 14 points respectively and will need to maintain form if they intend on competing for finals. For Diamond Valley, Caitlyn Meagher was standout in in their loss to Bendigo recording a team-high 15 points, followed next by Georgia Kitchell on 11.

Bendigo Braves (8th, 10-7) vs Altona Gators (6th, 11-5-1)

The Altona Gators continue their push for a top four spot as they travel to Bendigo to face the Braves. Last week, Altona rejoined the winner’s list with a comprehensive showing over Nunawading Spectres. Their lift in form comes off the back of their poor performance against the Supercats one round prior. In Bendigo’s last outing, they recorded a big 28-point margin over the Diamond Valley Eagles. They continue to boast a stellar record at home at 6-2, looking to maintain it as they host the Gators on Friday. In the match-up, the Braves will look to Piper Dunlop and Tess Barnes to maintain their dominance with pair having averaged 14.7 and 14.4 from their seven outings. For the Gators, Kayla Salmons has been standout with 12.3 PPG, alongside Monique Marcetic-Vaotangi with 8.6.

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC review: Round 8 – Geelong causes an upset

TOP-END competitors, Knox Raiders slipped from the top of the table in Melbourne United Victorian Junior Championship Division (MUVJBL) Under-18 Girls Championship Division with a 57-57 tie against bottom-end, Geelong Supercats.

The Raiders’ away record took its first non-winning result, sitting at 8-0-1 following the round. In the match-up both teams opened with 25 points in the first term before dipping substantially with an 8-7 second term in favour of Geelong. Geelong extended their lead in the third with a 19-14 term before Knox closed the gap with 11 points (five) in the last. Zoe Jenkins and Rhiannon Ockwell controlled the floor with 16 and 15 points respectively. For Geelong, NBL1 representatives, Carly Remmos and Alishia Knights led on the board with 14 and 13 boards respectively. Remmos’ performance moves to eleventh in the league for points per game (PPG), while Knights sits one below in twelfth.

Nunawading Spectres recorded their second loss in a fortnight after falling to Altona Gators on the road. The Spectres are third on the table but risk missing out on a second-chance for finals as Altona and Dandenong press one win below. The Gators set their sights on the top-four, rebounding well from their 55-40 loss against Geelong in the round prior. In the contest, it was a 21-5 second term that took Nunawading out of the race, despite tying and winning the subsequent terms. Alicia Sciberras tore up the floor with 19 points alongside Kayla Salmons, who recorded 15 for the night. NBL1 representative, Louisa Fakalata led her side with a 19-point performance, but lacked support on the board with Maddison Zugna following next on eight. Fakalata moves to top spot for total points (134) and average points per game (PPG) (19.1) with her dominant performance.

Bulleen Boomers have secured a home final following their win over the Dandenong Rangers on the road. The Boomers moved two wins outside the top two as they pick up their fourth consecutive win, defeating notable sides such as Nunawading and Dandenong in the past fortnight. The Boomers cleaned up in the first half, taking a 39-21 lead into the main break. The Boomers conceded the third (14-7) before finishing 12-14 in the final term. Olivia Tsantarlis led scoring for the Bulleen Boomers with a 16-point performance, followed next by Casey Valenti-Paea with 14. Valenti-Paea moves to sixth on the table for PPG at 14.4 following her performance. NBL1 Representative, Elly Morgan led on the board for Dandenong with 12 points, followed next by Hannah Rapp on nine. Morgan’s performance moves to 17th in the league for PPG.

The Boroondara Sports Complex was treated to one of the games of the round with Southern Peninsula sharks defeating the Hawthorn Magic (61-57) on the road. The result moves Southern Peninsula back into finals contention as they equal their record with Hawthorn in ninth despite placing thirteenth. The loss marks Hawthorn’s fifth consecutive loss, raising questions regarding their validity for finals. In the contest, Hawthorn opened strong at 17-9. They retained dominance in the next two terms (19-18, 17-15) before losing touch in the final term (4-19) to lose by four points. Emirson Devenie dominated at the board for Peninsula with a game-high 25 points, moving to third for PPG on 15.5, while Gemma Simon was next best with 13 points. For Hawthorn, Georgia Gray and Ella Crump were both dominant on 17 and 14 points respectively.

The Bendigo Braves rebounded hard against the Diamond Valley Eagles to pick up a 77-49 victory at home. Their win follows a 45-69 loss against the Southern Peninsula in the round prior, responding well to lock themselves in for finals. Diamond Valley’s away record takes another big hit (2-6-0) as they risk being rubbed out for the finals in the last round. In the match-up, the Braves shut the game down early with a 44-24 opening half, going on to claim a comfortable 28-point victory. Tess Barnes led on the floor for the Braves with 20 points, while NBL representative, Piper Dunlop followed closely with 17. Barnes move into fifth spot on the league-scoring table, one position below Dunlop in fourth. For Diamond Valley, Caitlin Meagher held strong with 15 points, followed by Georgia Kitchell on 11.

In the Reserve Grade, McKinnon lost at home to the Dandenong Rangers, while Kilsyth Cobras held up against Melbourne Tigers and Nunawading Spectres proved better than the Broadmeadows Broncos. The round continued with the Frankston Blues defeating the Keilor Thunder and Pakenham Warriors losing out to Warrandyte Venom.

In the Championship Division next round, Geelong Supercats face Southern Peninsula Sharks, while Knox Raiders host Bulleen Boomers and Hawthorn Magic come up against Diamond Valley Eagles. The round finishes Bendigo Braves hosting Altona Gators and Dandenong Rangers hosting Nunawading Spectres.

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC preview: Round 7

THE Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Girls Championship Division nears finals as we enter Round 7, with seemingly one spot remaining in the top four. Four teams continue to battle out for a second chance – all equal with 10 wins from fourth to seventh. This week’s game of the round will likely be between Nunawading Spectres and Bulleen Boomers, with the winner taking second place and putting themselves in the box seat for a much-desired home final. The match-up between Hawthorn and Dandenong also presents to be a good one, as the home side vies for a top eight spot.

Nunawading Spectres (3rd, 12-3) vs Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 12-3)

The third placed Nunawading Spectres host their top-end rivals, Bulleen Boomers, in a game that may seal their second-chance home final. Last week, the Spectres grabbed their twelfth consecutive win of the season, knocking off the Hawthorn Magic 61-38 at home. It was an unusual game, with the in-form side only scoring 11 points for the first half. They resurged following the break and went onto score 34 points in the fourth term to close out the curious affair. The Boomers boast two comfortable wins in the last fortnight – beating Hawthorn (59-50) and Geelong (50-41) at home. Though given their position, we expect higher margins against teams outside the eight, but it seems the Boomers have scraped a couple together in the last fortnight. This week, the league’s two best scorers go head to head. Nunawading’s Louis Fakalata has been in top form across her five outings, averaging 19.4 points per game (PPG) in equal-first with Bulleen’s Alexandra Keating. Maddison Zugna continues to be great support for Fakalata, having averaged 13 PPG from six outings, while Keating shares the load well with Casey Valenti-Paea (13.2).

Hawthorn Magic (9th, 8-5-2) vs Dandenong Rangers (5th, 10-5)

Hawthorn Magic host Dandenong Rangers this week in a game that may settle their finals future. Since returning from the break, the Magic have been in poor form – recording three consecutive losses, including a big 61-38 defeat against the Nunawading Spectres. Comparatively, the Rangers sit as one of the league’s most in-form side. Last week, they recorded one their biggest wins of the season after beating the Southern Peninsula by 42 points. The week prior, the Rangers knocked off league-leaders, Knox Raiders (48-52), on the road to make a big case for the top-four. Ryleh Killian stepped up for the Magic in last week’s loss – recording 12 points alongside Casey Dunstan’s 10. The pair will be expected to deliver big in this match-up – especially with NBL1 representative, Elly Morgan, and Leah Mackenzie recording big last week. Morgan shot 19 in the win to move seventeenth for league scoring average, while Hawthorn’s Killian holds strong in fifth.

Knox Raiders (1st, 13-2) vs Diamond Valley Eagles (12th, 7-7-1)

Knox Raiders will look to record an easy win this week against the bottom-end Diamond Valley Eagles, in a game that might secure their number one spot. Last fortnight, the Raiders recorded their second loss in the Championship Division – losing to Dandenong after conceding to Nunawading earlier in the season. Despite sitting atop the table, the Raiders are yet to record a big win in the new division. Since the break, the Eagles have recorded consecutive losses. They fell victim to the Nunawading streak last fortnight and copped a fair knock against the Gators in Round 6. Despite sitting low, Diamond Valley still sit in the finals race, but will need a perfect run home. NBL1 representative, Charlise Dunn, led with 17 points in last week’s clash Bendigo. Currently, she boasts eighth spot across the league – followed next by Georgia Baldwin (9.8 PPG) in eighteenth. For Diamond Valley, Jade Dunne (16) and Georgia Kitchell (12) held up against Altona. Dunne boasts seventh spot in the league following her efforts.

Geelong Supercats (13th, 6-9) vs Altona Gators (6th, 10-4-1)

Altona Gators travel to Geelong this week where they face the Supercats for a chance to snare a spot in the top-four. The Gators added their third consecutive win last week against the Diamond Valley Eagles (51-67) as they continue to show their dominance on the road (6-2-0). In theme of three streaks, the Supercats add their third consecutive loss after falling to Bulleen (50-41) on the road. As it stands, the Supercats will not play finals. They have been one of the more competitive sides in the Championship Division but have not shown enough just yet. Alishia Knights and Carly Remmos will be Altona’s biggest issue, with the pair averaging 12.5 and 11.8 PPG respectively. The Gators will rely heavily on Kayla Salmons (12.8) and Trinity Steele (9.4) to deliver once again. Last week, Salmons stepped up with 22 points, while Tyla Paraha followed close on 17.

Bendigo Braves (8th, 9-6) vs Southern Peninsula (14th, 6-9)

Even though Southern Peninsula are without a win in the Championship Division, Bendigo can never be too cautious when they are in the lower regions of the finals race. Last week, the Braves lost to the Raiders on the road – winning one of their last four outings. As with Peninsula, the Braves have been unsuccessful in the new division and could be the team to miss out on finals. The highlight of Peninsula’s season would be their near win against the Raiders in Round 2 (77-79). Though since then, have dropped off dramatically. Piper Dunlop has been in form for the Braves since beginning the new division, recording 15.8 PPG in third across the league. Tess Barnes has been a similar commodity in thirteenth with 12.6 PPG. With one spot between their opposition, Charli Dobson sits in fourth with 15.2 PPG for Peninsula – followed by Emirson Devenie in twelfth with 12.7

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC review: Round 6 – Rangers win big

DANDENONG Rangers moved to fifth spot in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Girls Championship Division following a big 37-79 win on the road against the Southern Peninsula Sharks. The Rangers kicked off the first half in dominant fashion, scoring 30 points to 10 in the first and 20 to five in second. Their dominance continued in the third term where they outscored 23-5, before giving up the final term with six points to 17. NBL1 representative, Elly Morgan, was immense in the victory with 19 points – moving to seventeenth spot for league scoring. She was accompanied well by Leah Mackenzie (12), Makaela Zeldenryk (11) and Leia Hanafin (11), who all starred on the floor. For the Sharks, Emirson Devenie led on the scoreboard – amassing 15 points on her way to twelfth spot for league scoring. Charli Dobson followed next on 10.

Nunawading Spectres earned their twelfth consecutive win in their match-up with Hawthorn Magic at home (61-38). The 23-point victory came off the back of a big second half for the Spectres – only dropping 11 points to 15 in the first half. The Spectres moved to a 50-point second half, compared to Magic’s 23 points – recording only four points in the third term. NBL representative, Louisa Fakalata recorded 19 points to snare top spot for league scoring. Teammate, Tarni Brown, also impressed for the Spectres, scoring 10 points in the win. For the Magic, Ryleh Killian led on the board with 12 points, while Casey Dunstan followed next with 10 points. The win moves the Spectres to third place as they continue to press the Bulleen Boomers and Knox Raiders for the number one spot. Hawthorn slip outside the top-eight with their third consecutive loss.

The top eight continued to reign supreme as Bulleen Boomers earned a 50-41 win over Geelong Supercats at Mullum Mullum. Picking up back-to-back wins, the Boomers retained second spot on the table as the Spectres press one position below as the most in-form team in the competition. For the first, third and fourth terms, just a combined two points separated the side. It was Boomers’ dominant second term (19-8) that eventually led them to victory – closing out with a nine-point win. NBL1 representative, Erin Riley led on the board for the home-side with 16 points. Casey Valenti-Paea and Alexandra Keating followed next with 11 and 10 points respectively – Keating moving to second spot for league scoring, and Valenti-Paea to ninth. Carly Remmos scored well for the Supercats with 11 points, followed next by fellow NBL1 representative, Alishia Knights, on eight.

Knox Raiders retained top-spot as they rejoined the winner’s list with a 58-47 win over the Bendigo Braves at home. The Raiders dominated the first half, entering the main break 34-19. They eased off the pedal in the second half at 24-28 and rode comfortably to victory. NBL1 representative, Charlise Dunn, led on the board for the Raiders, scoring 17 points on her way to eighth for league scoring. Arielle Mackey-Williams followed next with 12 points. For the Braves, NBL1 representative, Piper Dunlop led on the board with 13 points, followed next by Meg Mccarthy on 12. The Braves retain eighth spot following the result, while Knox maintain their space, one win ahead of Bulleen.

Altona Gators moved to sixth on the table with a 51-67 win over the Diamond Valley Eagles at Community Bank Stadium. The result dropped Diamond Valley to twelfth as they picked up their second consecutive loss in a fortnight. In the contest, the Gators took an early lead with a 26-11 first term. They failed to back it up in the second with 5-13 – taking a 31-24 lead into the break. They continued their efforts into the second half and moved comfortably to a 16-point win. Kayla Salmons led the game in scoring with 22 points on her way to eleventh spot for league scoring. Tyla Paraha almost emerged for the Raiders with 17 points. For the Eagles, Jade Dunne scored 16 points to move to seventh spot for league scoring, while Georgia Kitchell follows close on 12.

In the Reserve grade, Dandenong Rangers snared a 56-49 win over Pakenham Warriors, Warrandyte Venom defeated Frankston Blues (55-32) at home, and Broadmeadows Broncos lost 38-54 at home against Kilsyth Cobras. We continue the round with Keilor Thunder snared a 73-64 win over Nunawading Spectres and Melbourne Tigers defeated McKinnon 67-38 at home.

In the Championship Division for Round 7, Geelong Supercats host Altona Gators, the Knox Raiders come up against Diamond Valley Eagles, and Hawthorn Magic face Dandenong Rangers. The round continues with Nunawading Spectres facing top-end competitors, Bulleen Boomers, and Bendigo Braves hosting Southern Peninsula Sharks.

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC preview: Round 4

IN Round 4 of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Girls competition, the Nunawading Spectres continue to have their streak tested when they face the Bendigo Braves for a chance to make it 10 in a row. The Hawthorn Magic and Knox Raiders will also host a similarly tight contest with the Raiders coming off their first loss of the season and the Magic looking to break into the top four.

Bendigo Braves (4th, 8-4) vs Nunawading Spectres (3rd, 9-3)

In the game of the round, the Bendigo Braves will test their undefeated home record (5-0-0) against a dominant Nunawading Spectres for a chance to reclaim third. Last round, the Spectres shut down the Raiders’ 11-win streak to keep their own streak (nine) alive. The win took them ahead of this week’s competition, Bendigo Braves, who suffered a poor result last round after forfeiting to Hawthorn. Likely to have won their last game, the Braves will be determined to set the record straight with a big scalp over the Spectres. Piper Dunlop and Tess Barnes sit fifth and sixth for league scoring, averaging 16.5 and 16 points per game (PPG) respectively. The pair, along with Madeline Marks (11.3), have been stellar for Braves and should be eager to take the floor after their extended hiatus. For the Spectres, Louisa Fakalata has been immense, averaging 20 points per game to put her second for league scoring. Teammate, Maddison Zugna, has also been important with 15.3 PPG this game.

Hawthorn Magic (5th, 8-2-2) vs Knox Raiders (1st, 11-1)

In the second biggest outing of the round, the Hawthorn Magic will hope to take advantage of a wounded Knox Raiders with hopes of breaking into the top four. Last round came with unusual results for both sides, with the previously undefeated Raiders losing their first game and Hawthorn gaining a win from a Bendigo forfeit. Coming off the break, Knox are likely to rebound and build some space between them and the Bulleen Boomers in second. Rhyleh Killian has dominated for the Magic, averaging 19 points from two games this season. No other player averages over 10 points for the Magic this season – Ella Crump following on nine PPG. For the Raiders, Charlise Dunn and Georgia Baldwin have led scoring, with 13 and 11.3 PPG respectively. Since the Magic have not played a game in three weeks, the extended break presents a chance of lower cohesiveness when faced with the league-leaders, who will undeniably plan on responding following last round’s result.

Diamond Valley Eagles (11th, 6-5-1) vs Southern Peninsula Sharks (13th, 6-6)

In eleventh and thirteenth, both sides sit only one win below seventh place, making this game a must win for both. On Friday, the Diamond Valley Eagles host the Southern Peninsula Sharks, where the Sharks hope to snare their first win in the VC Championships. Despite coming off the loss last week, the Eagles’ impressive record (5-1-1) dictates that they win this week’s game. Comparatively, the Sharks record on the road leaves much to be desired (2-3-0). For the Eagles, Jade Dunne leads scoring with 15.3 PPG, followed by Abby Hildebrand on 10. Last round, Georgia Kitchell was immense for the Eagles, snaring 19 points to lead her team in scoring – followed by Dunne on 17. For the Sharks, Charli Dobson sits fourth for league scoring with 18.7 PPG, with her teammates, Gemma Simon (10.3) and Emirson Devenie (10), rounding out the top-20 at 17th and 18th respectively.

Altona Gators (9th, 7-4-1) vs Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 10-2)

The Bulleen Boomers have a real chance to steal top spot if they can topple the Altona Gators at home this week. Though in ninth, the Gators sit just one win below fourth, meaning a win for Altona could see them scale the ladder. Thus far, the Boomers are without a loss on the road (5-0-0), while the Gators haven’t defined a real preference at home (4-2-1) or away (3-2-0) but came extremely close to defeating the once undefeated Raiders (46-47) in the opening round of the VC Championship. Despite all that, the Gators are yet to win a game in the VC, recording a draw in their second game and losing their other two by a combined margin of four points. The Gators also lack damaging scorers with no player inside the top 20. Kayla Salmons so far leads with 9.3 PPG, followed close by Tylah Paraha with 8.7. For Bulleen, Alexandra Keating leads the league in scoring with 23.7 PPG, with Casey Valenti-Paea and Olivia Tsantarlis following close on 12 and 10 PPG.

Dandenong Rangers (8th, 7-5) vs Geelong Supercats (12th 6-6)

The Dandenong Rangers present a real chance to contest next round if they can beat the Geelong Supercats at home. Like many other sides, the Rangers sit just one win below fourth, while the Supercats also have a chance of lifting decently in the standings. Both sides are coming off wins from the break, with the Rangers surpassing the Gators in a tight win. Emily Sewell leads scoring for the Rangers with 15 PPG from two games, followed by Leia Hanafin who dropped nine points in her first game last round. For the Supercats, Chloe Skinner and Alishia Knights share the lead for points, both averaging 13 PPG. Carly Remmos follows close with 12, presenting a big chance alongside Skinner and Knights to punch a few holes in Dandenong’s defense.

MUVJBL U18 Girls VC review: Round 3 – Spectres go nine in a row against the best

THE Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under 18 Girls Championship division opened Round 3 in incredible fashion with the Nunawading Spectres going nine in a row against the previously undefeated Knox Raiders. NBL1 representative, Louisa Fakalata, dominated in the victory, dropping a game-high 25 points to move to second on the top scorer’s list. Maddison Zugna (11) also impressed for the Spectres, while Georgie Robinson and Meg Robinson held up for the Raiders with 12 and 11 points respectively.

The Geelong Supercats get one back in a tight 65-62 win over the Diamond Valley Eagles. Geelong fans had a lot to like with NBL1 representatives, Alisha Knights and Carly Remmos, dropping 16 and 14 points respectively, while teammate Alannah Northam also impressed with 14. For Diamond Valley, Georgia Kitchell dropped a game-high 19 points, with Jade Dunne following close on 17.

In a battle to stay off the bottom, the Dandenong Rangers snare a close 54-51 win at home against the Altona Gators. Despite losing touch in the third period, the Rangers fought hard in the fourth to close out 21-13 for the final term. NBL representatives, Emily Sewell (16), Hannah Rapp (11) and Elly Morgan (10) all starred in the win for Dandenong. For Altona, Kayla Salmons, Jordan Wilson and Trinity Steele all stepped up with 12, 10 and 10 points respectively.

The Bulleen Boomers held firm in second spot after beating Southern Peninsula 69-50 on the road. Alexandra Keating (19) continued to lead the league in shooting after another standout performance alongside teammates, Olivia Tsantarlis (12) and Casey Valenti-Paea (10), who also held strong. Southern Peninsula also boasted some big performances with Gemma Simon and Charli Dobson both dropping 16 in the loss. Unfortunately for the home side, the Boomers dominated in the first term 24-9, taking a near unassailable lead into the next three terms.

The Hawthorn Magic snared the easiest win of the round with the Bendigo Braves forfeiting the scheduled game at the Boroondara Sports Complex. The win takes the Magic to fifth spot, one below their would-be challengers.

In the reserve grade, the McKinnon Cougars continue their winless streak with a 51-80 defeat against the Nunawading Spectres. The Keilor Thunder protect a fair home record (4-1-0) against the Melbourne Tigers (53-47), while the Broadmeadows Broncos edge out the Frankston Blues in a tight affair (58-52). To close out the round, the Dandenong Rangers fall to the Warrandyte Venom at home (65-77), as the Pakenham Warriors suffer similarly against the Kilsyth Cobras (58-88).

On July 19, the Championship Division returns with the Diamond Valley Eagles hosting the Southern Peninsula and the Bendigo Braves hosting the Nunawading Spectres. The round continues with the Knox Raiders travelling to Hawthorn to face the Magic, the Altona Gators come up against the Bulleen Boomers and the Dandenong Rangers close out the round against the Geelong Supercats.

MUVJBL U18 Girls review: Eagles hold on in nervous draw to qualify

ALL 10 sides that sat in championships division qualification places for the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under 18 Girls competition, remained in those spots with the fourth and fifth placed sides both winning. However it did not stop some nervous times for clubs, including Diamond Valley Eagles who almost surrendered fifth spot to Kilsyth Cobras.

Ashe Pool:

McKinnon Cougars 46 defeated by Dandenong Rangers 75
Frankston Blues 35 defeated by Bulleen Boomers 89
Pakenham Warriors 43 defeated by Southern Peninsula Sharks 62
Diamond Valley Eagles 63 drew with Kilsyth Cobras 63
Nunawading Spectres 2 42 defeated by Knox Raiders 75

The match of the round by far was the draw between the Eagles and the Cobras, with fifth spot up for grabs. Given Kilsyth’s percentage was higher, a win to the Cobras would have catapulted them into the qualification places, despite the Eagles holding fifth spot coming into the round. Kilsyth led by four points at quarter time, but the Eagles hit back to head into the main break five points in front. The second half saw the Cobras claw their way back to level by the final break courtesy of a 23-18 third term, before both teams were strong defensively in the last quarter, scoring 11 points each to level at 63-apiece. The win meant the Eagles held onto fifth, thanks to the work of Keeley Evans (12 points), Georgia Kitchell (10) and Demi Albon (10). The Cobras came very close to victory, mostly due to the damaging trio of Nikita Young (20 points), Georgia Booth (18) and Ruby Nicks (14). The other two games that could have mixed up the top five were Southern Peninsula Sharks against Pakenham Warriors, and Dandenong Rangers taking on McKinnon Cougars. With both the Warriors and Cougars in the bottom two, it was expected the higher ranked sides would secure the spots. That is exactly what happened with the Sharks winning 62-43 over the Warriors – Charli Dobson‘s 16 points and Emirson Devenie‘s 15 among the highlights – while the Rangers raced to a 75-46 win over the Cougars. Emily Sewell dominated with 33 points, while Elly Morgan sank 17, and for the Cougars, Gabrielle Bafitis had 15 of her own. In other results, the top two sides cruised to easy wins with Knox Raiders remaining undefeated this season thanks to a 75-42 win over Nunawding Spectres. Charlise Dunn (23 points) starred for the Raiders, while Stephanie Wales managed 12 for the Spectres. Finally, Bulleen Boomers had no trouble against Frankston Blues on their way to a huge 54-point victory. Five players reached double figures – including four with 16 points or more – with Casey Valenti-Paea‘s 20 points the most of any player. For the Blues, Olivia Corrigan and Zoe Schonfelder both managed 12 points in the heavy defeat.

Watson Pool:

Geelong Supercats 58 defeated Warrandyte Venom 44
Bendigo Braves 53 defeated Hawthorn Magic 25
Keilor Thunder 61 defeated Dandenong Rangers 2 51
Melbourne Tigers 57 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 65
Altona Gators 47 defeated by Broadmeadows Broncos 53

As the saying goes, possession is nine-tenths of the law, and in the case of the Watson Pool this rang true as the fifth placed Geelong Supercats held onto the qualification place after a win in Round 9. The Supercats saw off a determined Warrandyte Venom side desperate to win their first game, while the home side also needed to fend off Broadmeadows Broncos and Keilor Thunder who were percentage behind them in sixth and seventh respectively. In the Supercats’ 58-44 win, they won every quarter but it was far from convincing early, leading by just five points at the final break before storming to a 20-11 final term in the 58-44 win. Karli Bruce and Alisha Knights both top scored with 11 points for the winners, while Ella Whiting-Le Cras (15) and Andreina Gammilonghi (14) were the key scorers for the Venom. It was heartbreak for Broadmeadows, with the Broncos upstaging top-of-the-table Altona Gators by six points – the second consecutive loss for the Gators. Despite the win, the Broncos missed out on qualifying, although Chrisy Triantafyllopoulos scored 13 points and Emma Povh managed 10 for the winners. Kayla Salmons reached double figures for the Gators with 10 points. Keilor Thunder also missed out on percentage despite a strong 61-51 victory over Dandenong Rangers 2. Amelia Velardo was impressive for the Thunder with 21 points, while Rangers’ shooter Perina Leime managed 14 in the loss. In other results, Nunawading Spectres head into the championship division with winning form, knocking off Melbourne Tigers 65-57. Louisa Fakalata was everywhere, sinking 27 points, while Tayha Watkins managed 15. For the Tigers, Sheridan Kavanagh top scored with 12 points. In the final game, Bendigo Braves stole second spot from Hawthorn Magic with a massive 28-point win that not many saw coming. The Braves restricted the Magic to just 10 points in the second half, and 25 for the game in the 53-25 victory. Piper Dunlop (12 points) and Tess Barnes (16) were the key scorers for the Braves, while Ryleh Killian (11) was the sole double-figure scorer for the Magic.

Championship Division: (To start after Queen’s Birthday long weekend)

Knox Raiders
Bulleen Boomers
Dandenong Rangers
Southern Peninsula Sharks
Diamond Valley Eagles
Altona Gators
Bendigo Braves
Hawthorn Magic
Nunawading Spectres
Geelong Supercats

Reserve Division:

Kilsyth Cobras
Nunawading Spectres 2
Frankston Blues
Pakenham Warriors
McKinnon Cougars
Broadmeadows Broncos
Keilor Thunder
Dandenong Rangers 2
Melbourne Tigers
Warrandyte Venom

MUVJBL U18 Girls review: Nunawading, Bulleen continue winning runs

NUNAWADING Spectres revival in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under 18 Girls championship division continued in Round 6, with the sixth placed side knocking off Broadmeadows Broncos to level their win-loss record this season at 3-3. The Spectres have won three games on the trot since losing their first three, and last Friday accounted for the Broncos by six points. Despite falling four points down at quarter time, the Spectres got on top after that, winning the remaining three quarters to run out 64-58 victors. Tayha Watkins scored 13 points for the winners, while Maddison Zugna (12), Tarni Brown (12) and Lucy Oakford (11) all scored double-figures. For the Broncos, Chrisy Triantafyallopoulos scored 13 points in defeat, while Oriana Siamoa sank 11.

Hawthorn Magic bounced back from a draw with Melbourne Tigers last week to record an eight-point win over Keilor Thunder. The Magic scored 18 points to 12 in the first term before the Thunder managed to work their way back into the game, cutting the final term deficit to four. The Magic finished the stronger of the sides, adding 16 goals to 12 in the final quarter to record a 50-42 win. Competition leading scorer, Ryleh Killian continued her form for the Magic with 19 points, while Bridget Patel finished with 18. For Keilor, Ruby Sweeney-Spitzeck was the only double-figure scorer with 13 for the game.

In other Watson Pool results, Bendigo Braves defeated Geelong Supercats, 60-46 courtesy of a 32-18 second half after the sides were level at the main break. Sahara Rodda and Tess Barnes both scored 11 points for the winners, while Carly Remos (16) and Alisha Knights (13) were the dominant shooters for Geelong. Melbourne Tigers got the points against Warrandyte Venom, 55-42. Tylah Hooper sank 20 points in the win, while no Venom player reached double figures. In the final game, the scores from Altona Gators and Dandenong Rangers 2 is yet to be confirmed.

Watson Pool:

Bendigo Braves 60 defeated Geelong Supercats 46
Melbourne Tigers 55 defeated Warrandyte Vendom 42
Altona Gators vs. Dandenong Rangers 2
Broadmeadows Broncos 58 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 64
Keilor Thunder 48 defeated by Hawthorn Magic 50

Looking across to the Ashe Pool, Dandenong Rangers grabbed a crucial win over Kilsyth Cobras to move into clear third spot on the table. The Rangers had to fight back from an eight-point half-time deficit to storm to a nine-point win over the Cobras, scoring 35 points to 18 in the second half. Emily Sewell scored 15 points for the Rangers, while Leia Hanafin finished with 10. For the Cobras, Nikita Young sank 13 points, as Tia Wotherspoon had 11. Not far behind the Rangers in fourth is Diamond Valley Eagles who defeated Southern Peninsula Sharks, 75-60. Keeley Evans was unstoppable with 24 points, while Georgia Kitchell (11) and Jade Dunne (10) also contributed in the Eagles’ win. For the Sharks, Charli Dobson sank 19 points, while Gemma Simon (12) and Chloe Zielinski (11) also stood up in defeat.

At opposite ends of the ladder, Bulleen Boomers had an easy win over McKinnon Cougars, running away 76-29 winners, Bulleen’s fifth consecutive victory. Casey Valenti-Paea scored 19 points in the win, but she was far from alone with Sascha Korakis (13) and Antoniette Emma-Nnopu (12) also busy. Lily Tait (11 points) was the main scorer for the Cougars. Also at opposite ends of the table, but in a much closer game, Knox Raiders got past Pakenham Warriors, 67-55. Rhiannon Ockwell scored 15 points for the Raiders, while Zoe Jenkins managed 14. For the Warriors, Alanha Arnason was on song, shooting 15 points. In the final game of the pool, Nunawading Spectres knocked off Frankston Blues with a commanding 59-41 win. Nunawading shared the points around in the 18-point win as Stephanie Wales finished with 11 to be her team’s top scorer, while for the Blues, Kassie Boorer was impressive with 17.

Ashe Pool:

McKinnon Cougars 29 defeated by Bulleen Boomers 76
Diamond Valley Eagles 75 defeated Southern Peninsula Sharks 60
Nunawading Spectres 2 59 defeated Frankston Blues 41
Kilsyth Cobras 46 defeated by Dandenong Rangers 55
Pakenham Warriors 55 defeated by Knox Raiders 67