Tag: keith robinson

2021 Big V Men’s: Round 14

BIG V returned this weekend after a month long COVID-19 enforced hiatus and Round 14 did not disappoint. There were a number of blowouts with Keilor almost doubling their opponents score while it was much closer between Hawthorn and McKinnon.

Chelsea (106) defeated Western Port (78)

Chelsea raced out of the blocks with a 29 to 19 point opening term to give them the ascendancy nice and early. Western Port upped the ante in the second to reduce the margin to seven points but that is where it stopped. Chelsea came out with a real pep in their step in the second half and did not look like letting up on the lead. In fact they steadily added to the tally with consecutive 27 point quarters to claim a dominant 28-point win.

It was clear that Corey Standerfer came back with a point to prove and was nice and refreshed from the break sinking a staggering 40 points. It did not stop there for Standerfer as he reeled in 12 rebounds, two assists and one steal. Josh Watt was in fine form for Chelsea dropping 25 points at 53 per cent from the field while also amassing five rebounds and two assists. Aaron Frost had no troubles finding the bucket finishing with 18 points to his name shooting at 50 per cent from the field while Nathan Frost was equally as damaging with his 13 points and 21 rebounds, 17 of which were defensive. Scoring was not as easy for Western Port however Bevan Camilleri led the charge with 23 with his ability to convert from down town on full show thanks to his five triples from eight attempts. Matthew Theobald was the next best with his 15 points, four rebounds and three steals. Daryl Corletto found his groove in his 17 minutes on court to hit double-digits thanks to his 10 points.

Wyndham (71) defeated by Casey (94)

Casey got the chocolates in their clash with Wyndham securing a 23-point upset win. Leading from the first quarter, Casey looked to steadily build on their margin and did just that as the game went on. Casey stunned Wyndham in the opening term piling on 30 points to just 18 and while the scoring slowed up for the rest of the game they still managed to maintain the same level of pressure and intensity throughout the clash. The final quarter was just as dominant as Casey shut down Wyndham in offence and poured on the scoreboard pressure themselves.

It was a shared effort from Wyndham as every single player managed to hit the scoreboard. Brandon Watkins topscored for his side with 13 points while he also managed seven rebounds as teammate Cameron Hutton was the sole other player to reach double-figures thanks to his 10 points, four rebounds and four assists. Simon Maker notched up nine points at 57 per cent from the field while Aaron Dolny had an influence both on the boards with six rebounds and scoreboard sinking six points. For Casey it was the efforts of Matt Donlan that stood out as he drained 25 points while Anthony Williams also chimed in with a handy 18 points, six rebounds and four assists. Calvin Enge finished with 13 points in his 31 minutes on court as Keith Robinson also had an influence with his 12 points, eight rebounds and four steals.

Blackburn (48) defeated by Keilor (94)

It was a one-sided affair as Keilor Thunder bypassed Blackburn with relative ease as they continued their winning ways. The break did not seem to slow down Keilor who were in scintillating form draining 29 points to 17 in the first. Their defensive pressure came to the fore in the second quarter limiting the Vikings to a mere six points while they went streaming down the other end to keep the tally growing. It tightened up in the third and fourth but Keilor still had the upper hand as they secured an impressive 46 point win.

Keilor showcased their depth and versatility with five players making it out of single digits and Luke Sist proving to be a driving force. Sist was the main facilitator with his 21 points at 44 per cent from the field while he also picked up five rebounds and two assists. Matt Spencer was influential draining 15 points and doing so at a high accuracy while Charleston Long converted at 80 per cent from the field for his 14 points. Nicholas Masunda and Nelson Kirksey managed 10 points apiece in the win along with a combined nine rebounds. It was a tough day at the office for Blackburn as Mark Berezdecky was the only player to hit double-digits with his 10 points while Bul Niop was hot on his heels with nine points and three rebounds. Matthew Scammell also proved to be a handy prospect for the Vikings with his nine points and two steals.

McKinnon (102) defeated by Hawthorn (106)

It was an overtime thriller between McKinnon and Hawthorn with the latter just sneaking over the line by four points. The Magic skipped out to a handy six point lead at the first break before McKinnon answered the call with a dominant second quarter to not only level scores but take the lead at halftime. Scoring tightened up in the third, however Hawthorn ate into the margin by a point. With it all to play for in the final term, the Magic left nothing to chance outscoring McKinnon to draw even at the siren. The Magic showed plenty of grit and determination to prevail in overtime and claim a hard-fought win.

McKinnon had no shortage of scoring dynamos with Jordan Geer paving the way with his 22 points but inaccuracy came back to bite him only converting at 47 per cent from the field. But he did show his strength with his 11 rebounds and five assists. Luke Peynenborg was another solid contributor thanks to his 20 points, four rebounds, five assists and two steals. Luke Shelley worked in overdrive for McKinnon posting 14 points, six assists and two steals while Jordan Vandenberg was also in fine form with his 12 points. Although McKinnon shared the points around, the Magic were lucky enough to have Jarrod Molnar who seemed to have the ball on a string posting 38 points at 48 per cent from the field. Molnar also racked up eight rebounds in an all-round dominant performance. Kirk Smith and Joe Furphy imposed themselves with 20 and 15 points respectively as Xavier Evans also made himself felt pouring on 13 points and 16 rebounds to collect a double-double.

Hume (91) defeated Sunbury (80)

The Broncos claimed a ladder defining win against Sunbury on the weekend to solidify their spot inside the top four. The battle was hot early as only point favoured Sunbury but the tables quickly turned as Hume rallied in the second term. They upped the ante both in offence and defence to add some real scoreboard pressure and stop the Jets in their tracks. Up by 10 points at half-time, Hume continued to put the foot down with a dominant 32 to 20 point term and while the Jets fought back in the final quarter it was too little, too late as Hume hung on for a strong win.

Jake Martin wasted no time imposing himself on the contest racking up the points left, right and centre with a game-high 31 at 57 per cent. He also racked up nine rebounds and four assists for his efforts. Shayan Mahboobi also proved to be a handy option with his 15 points while both Lukas Kafritsas and Liam Killey showcased their skills to record 10 points each. Jayce Beasley was the topscorer for Sunbury producing 20 points at 50 per cent from the field while he also accumulated four rebounds. Nathan Baker tried hard to keep Sunbury within touching distance with his 16 points in his 29 minutes out on court while Trevon Clayton also got busy with his 15 points and 11 rebound effort.

Round 15:

The top four battle between Wyndham and McKinnon will generate plenty of excitement while Blackburn will remain on the hunt for their first win up against Chelsea. Sunbury and Hawthorn will do battle while Keilor and Casey will engage in an enthralling contest. The final game of the round sees Western Port host Hume at Somerville Recreation Centre.

Photo credit: Basketball Victoria

2021 Big V Men’s: Round 10

ANOTHER Round of Big V rolled around as the top of the table Thunder continued their winning ways as did Wyndham. McKinnon were handed a loss off the back of some strong work from Hume Broncos while Blackburn and Western Port continue to linger at the bottom of the ladder.

Hawthorn (80) defeated Sunbury (67)

Hawthorn flew out of the blocks against Sunbury piling on 22 points to 16 in the opening quarter. That momentum continued into the second term as they added to their growing tally to take the halftime score to 13 points. Things tightened up in the second half of play as both sides could not be separated scoring 15 points apiece in the third and 24 points apiece in the fourth quarter with the damage being done ultimately in that opening half of play from the Magic.

Joe Furphy proved to be the game changer for the magic as he slotted 23 points at 53 per cent from the field he was also incredibly accurate from the free throw line sinking five of his six shots at 83 per cent. He also reeled in nine rebounds and five assists while teammate Ryan O’Sullivan was equally as impressive with 17 points to his name and five rebounds all of which were defensive. Jarrod Molnar was the only other player to reach double figures sinking 15 points in his 25 minutes out on court. He also amassed four rebounds and two assists. Looking at Sunbury and they had four players hit double digits but it was Nathan Baker that led the way with 17 points in his 32 minutes out on court. He shot at 54 per cent from the field and also showcased his class from downtown sinking three triples. Nathan Marshall, Corey Bellman and Jayce Beasley all finished the match with ten points to their name with Marshall also showcasing his crafty court play to dish off seven assists in the loss.

Western Port (87) defeated by Wyndham (91)

It was an incredibly tight battle between Western Port an Wyndham with the latter eventually getting over the line albeit by four points. Wyndham raced out of the gates in the first quarter drilling 25 points to 17 but that was short lived as Western Port managed to fight their way back into the game in the second quarter adding 23 points to their total while keeping Wyndham to just 14. The third quarter was a scoring bonanza as Western Port nailed 30 points and Wyndham, 33 showcasing the high calibre talent out on display. Things intensified in the final quarter with Wyndham just doing enough to sneak over the line and claim the win.

Jake Gaze was the man of the moment for Western Port piling on 25 points at an impressive 67 per cent from the field. He also proved to have a hot hand from downtown sinking eight of his twelve attempts. Bevan Camilleri and Jay Allen also chimed in with 13 and 15 points respectively in the loss. Daryl Corletto was his usual self, albeit a fraction down on his high scoring, finishing with eleven points but still managed three rebounds, five assists and two steals. Moving on to Wyndham and Tomi Ayilara was the top scorer thanks to his 21 points in his 22 minutes out on court. He was deadeye accurate from beyond the arc nailing three triples at 100 per cent while he also managed four rebounds and two steals. Stefan Pomasan was another key figure for Wyndham with 15 points, four rebounds and nine assists while Cameron Hutton finished with seven points to his name and an impressive ten rebounds.

McKinnon (78) defeated by Hume (94)

Hume have continued their merry way notching up another win this time against McKinnon. It was a close start to the game with only two points separating the two sides at quarter time. McKinnon came out stronger in the second quarter to overcome their two point deficit and take a narrow one-point lead into half-time. But unfortunately that is where it stopped for McKinnon as Hume took the reins piling on 28 points to 23 in the third term and kept their foot on the pedal in the 4th to outscore McKinnon comfortably.

Luke Shelley was at his best for McKinnon sinking 18 points at 50 per cent from the field while he also registering two rebounds and two assists. Jordan Vandenberg recorded an impressive double-double thanks to his 12 points and ten rebounds in the loss for McKinnon while teammate Jordan Geer also found his way with 14 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in a strong showing despite being in a losing side. It was the Shayan Mahoboobi and Jake Martin show for Hume as the duo combined for 45 points. Martin just edged ahead with 23 points and nine rebounds as Mahboobi finished with 22 points and six assists. The ever reliable Mackuei Puondaki made his presence felt thanks to his 12 points and 10 rebounds while Liam Killey got busy in his short time out on court to finish with 11 points and six rebounds to his name.

Chelsea (62) defeated by Keilor (80)

Keilor flex their muscles against Chelsea claiming a strong 18-point win last Friday night. It was all one way traffic for majority of the game with Keilor establishing an early lead and not relenting throughout the game. The third quarter was the closest of the match as both teams piled on 16 points apiece unable to be separated. But that was not enough to ruffle the feathers of the Thunder as they already had a handy lead and continued to add to that in the final quarter as they sunk 23 points and kept Chelsea to just 17.

Corey Standerfer was the dominant scorer for Chelsea as he produced 23 points but could have had more, had he been more accurate from the field only going at 33 per cent. He was strong defensively amassing six steals and five rebounds. Nathan Frost was handy for Chelsea as he nailed 16 points and proved to be a force to be reckoned with off the boards thanks to his 18 rebounds meanwhile Aaron Frost was less potent but still played a significant role thanks to his nine points and seven rebounds. Keilor had a plethora of players step up to the challenge as five players ventured into double-digits. Luke Sist led the troops with 17 points, 15 rebounds and five assists in another stellar performance. Charleston Long once again featured highly thanks to his 16 points and 10 rebounds as Bol Bak chimed in with 11 points in his 18 minutes on court. Both Matt Spencer and Joel Bellman finished with 10 points apiece in the win, in an all-round comprehensive performance by the Thunder.

Casey (94) defeated by Blackburn (84)

The final game of the round, saw Casey topple Blackburn by a mere 10 points. Casey pushed out to a nice early lead and did not look like giving that up at any stage throughout the opening half. The Cavaliers showcased their scoring prowess in the second quarter nailing 32 points compared to Blackburn’s 19. The table started to turn in the second half where the Vikings managed to up the ante in attack and defence. But it was too little too late as Casey had done the damage early on in the piece and the Vikings were unable to peg their way back.

Anthony Williams  was the main facilitator for Casey draining 29 points, five rebounds, two assists and two steals in an all-round solid performance. Matt Donlan was the next best producing 14 points at a lowly 33 per cent from the field but he made up for it with nine rebounds and three assists. Keith Robinson was handy with his 13 points as was Brendon Hood who managed 11 points and nine rebounds. Michael McInnes was the only other player to make it out of single figures nailing 10 points at 50 per cent. Neal Mueller worked tirelessly for Blackburn draining 15 points and also racked up five rebounds, three assists and a steal. Mark Berezdecky was influential with his 13 points as teammate Terrance Swayne got busy thanks to his 12 points and seven rebounds in the loss.

Round 11:

If all goes to plan given the impending lockdown in Victoria, Chelsea is meant to take on Hawthorn while Hume and Wyndham will lock horns. Casey and McKinnon will be an enthralling battle as the Vikings and Western Port fight it out for another win as both are coming in off losses. The final game sees Keilor and Sunbury go head-to-head in what is set to be an absolute thriller.

Photo credit: Big V Facebook

2021 Big V Men’s: Round 9

ROUND 9 of Big V Men’s went off with a bang as the top of the table McKinnon notched up a thumping win as Wyndham also left their mark on the competition. The round had a mixed bag of results as a number of games were decided by less than 10 points and others by 40 plus showcasing the wide range of results.

Western Port (82) defeated by Casey (101)

Casey toppled Western Port to secure their fifth win of the season, while Western Port linger at the bottom of the ladder. Western Port got the head start on Casey as they established a four point lead at quarter time and then added to that buffer at half time to boast a seven point lead. but Casey were not done with yet, as they rallied in the third quarter to halt Western Port’s attacking momentum and go on the attack themselves piling on 26 points to 14. But their best was yet to come as they starred in the final stanza credit to their 34 points to 20 term.

Daryl Corletto was in ripping form for Western Port leading the troops with 22 points while also managing five rebounds and eight assists in the loss. Bevan Camilleri made an impact on the scoreboard with 17 points in 19 minutes nailing two triples at 50 per cent. Camilleri reeled in eight rebounds with only Matt Turner beating him on that front thanks to his 10 boards all of which were defensive and 19 points. But Casey had stars of their own with Matt Donlan upping the ante to produce 26 points at 50 per cent from the field. Keith Robinson was the next best with 17 points, seven rebounds and six assists as Anthony Williams Jr also got involved in the action sinking 16 points at 46 per cent accuracy from the field. Ben Waterhouse and Brendon Head were the only other players to make it out of single digits scoring 15 and 13 points respectively.

Wyndham (87) defeated Chelsea (73)

It was another strong showing from Wyndham as they produced a convincing win over Chelsea. Wyndham monopolised the play from the first quarter as they poured on 28 points to 19 and they kept their foot on the pedal in the second, well and truly outscoring their opponents by 11 points. Up by 20-points at half time, Wyndham looked to extend their lead in the third and that they did as they sunk 21 points to 14. With the game all but over in the final term, Chelsea came out with a real point to prove, attacking the basket and working their way back into the match to send the home side into panic stations. In the end Wyndham did enough to hold on and win.

There were three main players for the victors as Stefan Pomasan, Cameron Hutton and Makur Jongkuck all managed double-figure scores. Pomasan was the most prominent of the lot walking away with 25 points and flexing his muscles from down town credit to his six triples from 13 attempts. Jongkuck recorded 14 points while Hutton got busy with his 11 and seven rebounds. Kaelan Matejin was not the most prolific given he only managed six points but he showcased his strength in defence picking up eight rebounds and two steals. For Chelsea both Callum Guillot and Corey Standerfer were dominant sinking 21 points apiece. The duo impressed from three-point range with five and four triples each while Nathan Frost also chimed in with a handy 18 points and whopping 17 rebounds.

Keilor (70) defeated Blackburn (55)

The Thunder made it two wins straight, overcoming Blackburn by 15 points on Saturday. Keilor made all the running early, skipping out to a five point lead at the first break before the Vikings snapped back in the second to eat into the deficit. Only down by one point at the main break, Blackburn were pushed even further onto the backfoot by an inspired Keilor outfit as they piled on 19 points to nine. With a real pep in their step, the Thunder ground out the game to put the nail in the coffin and notch up a hard-fought victory.

Charleston Long dominated the play with 16 points for the eventual winners as he also accumulated 11 rebounds, two assists and three steals. He received plenty of support from Mitch Lukey who also chimed in with 15 points in his 37 minutes out on court, while Jeremy Edwards made his presence felt sinking 11 points and three rebounds. Nicholas Masunda plied his trade with nine points and six rebounds. Bul Niop led the charge for Blackburn registering 14 points despite only being on court for 11 minutes with his accuracy proving to be the key difference given he shot at 63 per cent from the field. Neal Mueller and Nodia Odigie were other main contributors as they tallied eight points respectively with the latter amassing six rebounds to go with his points.

Sunbury (75) defeated by McKinnon (105)

McKinnon remains on top of the table after defeating Sunbury by 30 points to take their tally to seven wins and two losses. It was all one-way traffic from the moment these two sides stepped out on court with McKinnon wasting no time to heap on the scoreboard pressure. The intensity level lifted even further in the second quarter as both sides upped the scoring quantities sitting on 28 and 31 points apiece. McKinnon maintained that pressure and high level output in the third as they stacked on another 30 points and even with the game winding down in the fourth they still outscored the Jets.

Cory Bellman worked tirelessly for the Jets producing 18 points at 58 per cent from the field. Teammate Trevon Clayton was still impressive despite being down on his usual lofty standards producing 15 points and 10 rebounds, yet another double-double to his name. Jayce Beasley was also influential in the loss nailing 14 points and three rebounds. When looking at McKinnon it is hard to go past the services of Nic Laycock who had a day out thanks to his 28 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals. Teammate Luke Shelley was not far off the pace producing 20 points of his own as Jordan Geer stepped up to the task with 25 points at 56 per cent accuracy from the field. It did not stop there for Geer who actually finished the match with a triple-double credit to his 13 rebounds and 12 assists.

Hume (99) defeated Hawthorn (91)

The final game went right down to the wire as Hume just snuck past Hawthorn. It was a fast start for both sides as neither of them struggled to find the basket, with Hume sinking 31 points and Hawthorn hot on their heels with 30. Evenly poised, Hawthorn hit back in the second to steal the lead from the Broncos and maintained that narrow buffer in the third term. But the Broncos were determined to not let this game slip upping the ante both in offence and defence in the final quarter to score 23 points while keeping the Magic to a mere 13.

Joel Rimes was at his damaging best producing 26 points at 43 per cent from the field while he did some of his best work from beyond the arc thanks to his six triples. Jake Martin was another solid contributor for the winners registering 23 points and seven rebounds while Shayan Mahboobi did not skip a beat with 18 points and four assists. Mackuei Puondak was the other main target for the Broncos finishing with 15 points and nine rebounds to his name. although Hawthorn did not get the win, the effort of Jarrod Molan was unquestionable as he piled on 29 points and five rebounds. Kirk Smith and Xavier Evans managed 30 points between them with Evans proving to have a hot hand when it came to assists racking up six in the loss.

Round 10:

The next round of Big V will see Hawthorn and Sunbury fight it out while the lowly Western Port play host to Wyndham who will have their tails up after a hard-fought win. Hume will have their hands full when they take on McKinnon as Chelsea and Keilor lock horns. The final game sees Casey and Blackburn go head-to-head in what is set to be a thriller.

Photo credit: Big V Facebook

Victorian Under-20 and Ivor Burge teams announced

BASKETBALL Victoria has announced the Victorian 2021 Under-20 and Ivor Burge teams, selected to represent the state at the next Australian Junior Championships.

The six teams will make their way to Mackay, Queensland in May for the Australian Under-20 Junior Championships and Ivor Burge Championships for athletes with an intellectual disability.

Victoria Under-20 Navy Blue Men

The Victoria Under-20 Navy Blue Men’s team features national champions Harry Johnson and Mason Perry, and former Victorian representative Christian D’Angelo. The side is set to be coached by Basketball Victoria High Performance Head Coach (Metropolitan Men) Ash Arnott, and will be assisted by Nathan Cooper-Brown, Zach Moult and Neil Mottram.

TEAM LIST:

Anthony Dell’Orso (Broadmeadows)
Harry Johnson (Knox)
Christian D’Angelo (Traralgon/Nunawading)
Joseph Locandro (Waverley)
Kane Hynes (Wyndham)
Mason Perry (Dandenong)
Matthew Power (Camberwell)
Noah Todd (Diamond Valley)
Tom Carroll (Dandenong)
Will Hynes (Ballarat) 

EMERGENCIES:

Austin McKenzie (Horsham)
Dylan Bucknell (Casey)
Elijah Duol (Dandenong)
Ned Dillon (Eltham)
Patrick Twigg (Melbourne)

Victoria Under-20 Navy Blue Women

The Victoria Under-20 Navy Blue Women’s team will be coached by Australian Opals legend Jenni Screen, who is currently working as Basketball Victoria’s High Performance head coach (Metropolitan Women). She will be working alongside former national championship winning head coach Zoe Carr, Jo Wood and Kerryn O’Donnell. An on-court leader to look out for is VNPP athlete Jasmine Whately.

TEAM LIST:

Courtney Willemse (Diamond Valley)
Janthin Yat (Dandenong)
Jasmine Whately (Geelong United)
Kodie Myszka (Dandenong)
Maggie Kratochvil (Melbourne)
Nya Lok (Waverley)
Lauren Jones (Wyndham)
Perina Leime (Dandenong)
Sarae Beveridge (Nunawading)
Tyla Paraha (Altona) 

EMERGENCIES:

Mariah Derksen (Kilsyth)
Tayla Hooper (Melbourne) 

Victoria Ivor Burge Men

The Victoria Ivor Burge Men’s team is looking to return to the top of the podium with a few familiar faces. Returning to the 2021 lineup are experienced mainstays Jake De La Motte, James Myers and Frazer Dawber. The only two new additions to the team are rising stars Jack Inella and Matthew Farrar.

Head coach Ryan Holloway is keen see the team play at the Championships.

“These championships mean everything to this team – they’re passionate and excited to be able to represent Victoria on the national stage,” he said.

“It’s going to be another tough year of competition with the Ivor Burge competition, but as a team we’ll be ready to hit the floor running.”

Holloway will be assisted by Adrian Carfora, Glen Jordan, and Karen Patterson.

TEAM LIST:

Frazer Dawber
Jack Inella
Ryan Lethlean
Jake De La Motte
James Debetta
James Myers
Luke Nicholls
Matthew Farrar
Michael Snyders
Nick Cluning 

EMERGENCIES:

Ryan Briggs
Jake Booth

Victoria Ivor Burge Women

Unfortunately due to a lack of competing teams from other states, the 2021 Ivor Burge Women’s tournament will not go ahead. The side that won the 2020 Ivor Burge Women’s title in Canberra were reselected in the 2021 lineup.

Head coach Simon Robinson said despite these challenges, the program will try to put on alternative events to keep athletes involved and interested.

“I know a lot of the athletes well, know the families well – I do feel a big sense of obligation and duty to provide as many opportunities as we can [to] make it the best experience that we can,” he said.

“We’ll definitely be trying to give opportunities to the athletes to keep them engaged and get back to some sense of normalcy and 2022 will hopefully be like what it was in 2020.”

Robinson will be assisted by Justin May and O’Donnell.

TEAM:

Danielle Phillips
Evie Patterson
Jasmine Dellas
Jessica McCulloch
Kate Leckenby
Kaitlyn Papworth
Kaitlin Zonneveld
Montana Haag-Witherden
Natasha Exell
Rachel Potter 

Victoria Under-20 Women

The Victoria Under-20 Women’s team features a number of junior talent, including WNBL athletes Gemma Potter and Jade Melbourne, as well as current Centre of Excellence athletes Charlise Dunn, Emily Sewell and Olivia Pollard.

Head coach Katrina Hibbert says the group’s versatility mixed with elite level experience is a recipe for success.

“This team has the ability to play several different line-ups with the group we have selected – we can play big and dominate the paint and we can play with a smaller line-up with versatility through all positions to stretch oppositions and be aggressive and disruptive defensively,” she says.

“I’m looking forward to working with a talented group pf female athletes in a challenging tournament environment against the other top female players of their age group in Australia.”

Hibbert is assisted by Kerryn Mitchell (Frankston), Taylor Lee (Casey), and Lisa Page.

TEAM LIST:

Charlise Dunn (Knox/COE)
Emily Sewell (Dandenong/COE)
Gemma Potter (Dandenong)
Georgia Booth (Kilsyth)
Hailey Merrigan (Bulleen)
Jade Melbourne (Traralgon/COE)
Kayla Salmons (Altona)
Luisa Fakalata (Nunawading)
Maddie Condron (Bendigo)
Olivia Pollerd (Southern Peninsula/COE) 

EMERGENCIES:

Elly Morgan (Dandenong)
Tess Barnes (Bendigo) 

Victoria Under-20 Men

The Victoria Under-20 Men’s team brings together the best of the Country and Metropolitan. Featuring Australian Boomers tandem Dyson Daniel and Patrick Ryan, NBA Global Academy representative Bol Dengdit and former Victorian representatives Brody Nunn, Josh Duach, Joe Moli, Keith Robinson, Riley Simmons and Owen Foxwell, this team is shaping up for success.

Head coach Matthew Nunn says the groups spark and intensity will make for some exciting baseball to watch.

“I think we have a very versatile and balanced team that will have very strong guard play at both ends,” he says.

“I think it is a great outcome for the Under-20 age group to participate at the championships this year, as it is a critical pathway for many young athletes to launch their future goals within the sport.”

Nunn is assisted by Andrew Cutler (Nunawading), Braden Cotter (Knox), and Wayne Bird.

TEAM LIST:

Austin Shelley (Moe / Knox)
Brody Nunn (Knox)
Bol Dengdit (Melton/NBA Global Academy)
Dyson Daniels (Bendigo/COE)
Josh Duach (Kilsyth)
Jye Moli (Knox)
Keith Robinson (Phillip Island / Casey)
Owen Foxwell (Bulleen)
Patrick Ryan (Phillip Island / COE)
Riley Simmons (Dandenong) 

CBL Gippsland: Moe Meteors win through to grand final

MAFFRA Eagles and Moe Meteors both scraped through to the grand final in the Country Basketball League (CBL) Men’s division recording narrow wins in their respective semi-finals clashes. The Eagles triumphed over Korumburra Wildcats by a mere three points (89-86) while the Meteors stole the show with a four point victory over Warragul Warriors (76-72).

It was a three-pronged attack that stepped up to the plate for the Eagles as Elliot Hunt impressed with 28 points while Coby Burgiel also made his presence felt with 22 points of his own. Samuel Whelan was another hot hand for Maffra posting 19 points as Frazer Brouns finished with 11 points in the win. For the Wildcats, Keith Robinson was the main target leading the way with 29 points as Brodie Mabilia also featured with 20 points.

Christian D’Angelo was a key cog for the Meteors in their win, sinking a team-high 21 points as Luis D’Angelo was the next best with 17. Stephen O’Brien was a dominant figure knocking back 15 points as Liam Fitzpatrick was the only other Moe player to reach double-digits. Jarryd Moss led the way for Warragul sinking 23 points as Murray Myers also managed 14 points but it was not enough to overcome their opponents.

The Eagles and Meteors will meet in the grand final with one of them set to be crowned the champions.

In the women’s division it was Warragul Warriors and Moe Meteors that flexed their muscles in their semi-finals to earn passage into the grand final. Maffra put up a strong fight contesting hard but in the end the Warriors had the last laugh securing a five point win (52-47) while the Wildcats worked tirelessly against Moe but ultimately fell short (61-55).

Mikaela Dickson led the Warriors to victory, posting 20 points with her attack on full display while teammate Tanarly Hood getting into some foul trouble with four to her name but still managed to put away 12 points. Myah Healey also contributed to the scoreboard with 10 points. For the Eagles Paige Biddle did not muck around, nailing 16 points with Alex Gallatly and Emmerson Connolly recording 12 and 10 points respectively in the loss.

The other semi-final between Moe and Korumburra brought plenty of excitement as Abbey Noblett shone for the Meteors recording a game 22 points with teammate Samantha Labros not far behind on 21 points. Chloe Hogg was the leading figure for the Wildcats posting 15 points while Macey McGlead was the only other player to secure double digits with 11 points.

The Warriors and Meteors will meet in the grand final with the Warriors walking away with the chocolates the last time these two sides met in Round 3.

CBL Gippsland: Warragul Warriors and Korumburra Eagles impress

THERE was no shortage of Country Basketball League action over the weekend as teams went head to head in the Gippsland division. The Eagles tasted success in both men’s outings, while it was the same fate for Warragul Warriors in the women’s as they created separation on top of the ladder.

GIPPSLAND MEN’S

It was a mixed bag of results for Korumburra who managed a 16-point win against Sale Sonics followed by a 15-point loss over the weekend to the Eagles. Meanwhile Maffra Eagles enjoyed a good run of form notching up consecutive wins to continue their hot form and keep them on top spot. Moe Meteors claimed victory against Churchill Blue Devils by 30 points in a strong showing as a number of players stepped up to the plate and delivered when needed.

There was a trio of players that led the way for the Wildcats with Brodie Mabilia showcasing his scoring prowess with his 20 points. He was assisted by Keith Robinson who slotted 17 points as Nick Prowd also registered 11 points in the win. Although Sale Sonics failed to get the “W” it did not stop Harper Fraser from finding the basket downing 17 points. Josh Backway and Benjamin Dessent chimed in with 11 and 10 points respectively. The Eagles were spearheaded by Samuel Whelan and Frazar Brouns as the two managed 27 and 24 points to get their side well and truly over the line in their first game of the round. Thomas Stephenson was the only other real influence in the win dropping 14 points in the clash against Warragul Warriors. But Whelan took his game to a whole other level in the outing against the Wildcats sinking a staggering 42 points as Coby Burgiel landed 21 points in a commanding performance.

Although the Warriors did not get over the line Luke McKenzie starred draining 19 points as teammates, Jarryd Moss and Tom Muir recorded 16 and 14 points respectively in their sole outing for the round. Speaking of sole outings, Christian D’Angelo was the money-maker notching up a game high 23 points in the Meteors win. Liam Fitzpatrick and Luis D’Angelo found their groove with 16 points each while Jayden Van Dyk also proved a handy option on the scoreboard with 14 points. In the loss, Ryan Canovan led the charge with 22 points for Churchill Blue Devils with Jordan Canovan the next best with 15 points to his name.

ROUND 5 RESULTS:

Korumburra Wildcats (76) defeated Sale Sonics (60)
Maffra Eagles (91) defeated Warragul Warriors (82)
Korumburra Wildcats (81) defeated by Maffra Eagles (96)
Moe Meteors (90) defeated Churchill Blue Devils (60)

GIPPSLAND WOMEN’S

There were a number of blowouts in Round 5 of the CBL women’s division as Moe Meteors and Warragul Warriors recording resounding wins. The Meteors collected a 62-point win over Lakes Entrance Pelicans flexing their muscles before having the tables turned on them in their second game against the Warriors. It was a good weekend for Warragul who secured a 27-point victory against the Eagles and a narrow victory over the Meteors. It was a close contest between Korumburra Wildcats and Maffra Eagles as the game was decided by a mere seven points with the former walking away with the chocolates.

The Warriors were littered with stars across the court as Tanarly Hood starred with a game high 19 points. Hot on her heels was teammate Myah Healey who collected 18 points as Dallas Loughridge drained 17 herself. Mikaela Dickson was the only other player to manage double digits with 14 points in the win. Hood delivered in her second game producing 18 points as Loughridge also dominated with 24 points against the Meteors. The Eagles struggled to generate much flow, dropping both of their games over the weekend however Julie Float and Emerson Connolly hit the scoreboard with 10 points each in game one before Paige Biddle dominated with 23 points and Jamie Gallatly slotted 18.

The scoring was shared between a number of players in the Meteors as Samantha Labros topped the table and walked away with 22 points as Caitlin Demczuk also chimed in with a handy 13 points in the win. Tahni Hodgens recorded 12 points as Abbey Noblett produced 10 and this vein of form continued in their match up against the Warriors as Noblett starred with 26 points despite losing. Natalie Bire was the main contributor for Lakes Entrance with a team high 16 points. The contest between the Eagles and Wildcats was close as Chloe Hogg showcased her scoring prowess to notch up 19 points and Brylee Angwin 17. They were ably assisted by Gemma Dixon with 10 as they just snuck over the line against Maffra.

ROUND 5 RESULTS:

Maffra Eagles (54) defeated by Warragul Warriors (81)
Lakes Entrance Pelicans (39) defeated by Moe Meteors (101)
Korumburra Wildcats (66) defeated Maffra Eagles (59)
Moe Meteors (79) defeated by Warragul Warriors (84)

Picture credit: Basketball Victoria

CBL Gippsland: Round 4 – Maffra and Warragul go undefeated in respective competitions

MAFFRA Eagles and Warragul Warriors remain the teams to beat in the Gippsland Country Basketball League (CBL) competitions after they won top-of-the-table clashes. It was an action-packed round of basketball action, with just three rounds now remaining and the season surpassing the halfway mark at the end of Round 4.

GIPPSLAND MEN:

Five games played out across Round 4 in the men’s CBL Gippsland competition, with no side picking up two wins. Moe Meteors managed to pick up one win from two matches, whilst the bottom two sides in Lakes Entrance Pelicans and Churchill Blue Devils lost both their matches. Maffra Eagles went outright top and remained undefeated, while Warragul Warriors and Sale Sonics also picked up important wins as the ladder has started to take shape.

The match of the round built up prior to the weekend was the top-of-the-table clash between the unbeaten sides in Maffra Eagles and Moe Meteors. Knowing only one could come away with the victory, it was the Eagles – who have played one less game – that claimed the win by 11 points, 90-79. Samuel Whelan (22 points), Frazar Brouns (19), Elliot Hunt (17) and James Whelan (12) all shared the points around in a big day out for the winners. Moe had its fair share of scorers, as Christian D’Angelo (15 points), Josh Pearce (14), Rhys Anderson (12) and Jayden Van Dyk (11) hit double figures.

Moe managed to bounce back against Lakes Entrance Pelicans on Sunday, with D’Angelo hitting up another 25 points, while Ben Van Dyk (14) was three more than Jayden Van Dyk (11) and Stephen O’Brien (11). Andrew Savige and Thomas Stephenson both scored 13 points, and Jesse Pearce finished with 10, but the Pelicans could not overcome the Meteors, going down by 22 points.

It was the second loss of the round of the Pelicans who hosted Korumburra Wildcats on Saturday. The Wildcats ran out dominant winners despite the long road trip, picking up the highest score of the round with a 103-71 victory. Teenagers Keith Robinson (33 points) and Brodie Mabilia (21) tore the Pelicans apart, while William Lumby (13) and Matt Kennewell (12) also contributed strongly. Thomas Stephenson (16 points), Jesse Pearce (14) and Jordi Williams (11) were the top scorers for Lakes Entrance.

The other game on Saturday was Warragul Warriors’ 15-point win over Churchill Blue Devils. The Warriors hosted the winless Blue Devils and managed to control proceedings to get up, 87-72. Murray Myers (15 points), Tom Muir (13) and Jarryd Moss (12) all registered impressive final tallies, as Zac Bezzina (17) hit a match-high score in defeat, and Jordan Canovan (14) was also solid in the loss.

Unfortunately for the Blue Devils, their luck did not change on Sunday, losing out to Sale Sonics by nine points. Canovan (18 points) and Bezzina (16) were again the key players in the 67-76 defeat, though Nick Linton also added 13 points to the tally. Owen Gallagher (17 points), Jake Hutchins (16), Luke Williams (15) and Harper Fraser (10) all hit up double-figure points for the losers.

ROUND 4 RESULTS:

Lakes Entrance Pelicans (71) defeated by Korumburra Wildcats (103)
Warragul Warriors (87) defeated Churchill Blue Devils (72)
Maffra Eagles (90) defeated Moe Meteors (79)
Churchill Blue Devils (67) defeated by Sale Sonics (76)
Moe Meteors (90) defeated Lakes Entrance Pelicans (68)

GIPPSLAND WOMEN:

Looking to the women’s competition, Moe Meteors turned the tables on Maffra Eagles in their head-to-head and then went on to smash Lakes Entrance Pelicans, while the Pelicans had a similarly one-sided loss at the hands of Korumburra Wildcats, as Warragul Warriors fended off the Wildcats on Sunday.

After two losses to start the season, Moe Meteors came up trumps in Round 4, defeating the two sides above them on the table to finish on an even 2-2 from four matches. In the opening game of the round, the Meteors won 78-65 over Maffra Eagles on the road, as Samantha Labros (16 points) and Caitlin Demczuk (15) led the way. Abbey Noblett (11 points) also contributed in the win, while Alex Gallatly (18), Jaime Gallatly (16) and Emerson Connolly (13) were the best for the Eagles.

Moe had a much easier time against Lakes Entrance Pelicans, smashing their way to a massive 101-28 victory. Labros was near-unstoppable with 27 points, though she was far from alone as Cassandra Wass (14), Noblett (12) and Demczuk (11) all had productive outings. No Pelicans player reached double-figure points, though Natalie Bire (nine) was the top scorer from the losing team.

A day earlier the Pelicans suffered a 71-point defeat at the hands of Korumburra Wildcats at home. Chloe Hogg put up a ridiculous 35 points in the win, while Alahna Arnason (21) and Tyla Angwin (11) both hit double-figure points. Jasmine Witham (seven points) was the top scorer for the Pelicans on the day.

In a top-of-the-table match to close out the round, Warragul Warriors remained undefeated – albeit having played just the two games – securing an 83-72 win over Korumburra Wildcats. Dallas Loughridge (24 points), Mikaela Dickson (17), Tanarly Hood (12) and Peta Rhodes (10) all contributed well to knock off one of the contenders, while Hogg and Arnason still caused plenty of headaches with 22 points apiece, but it was not enough in the 11-point defeat.

ROUND 4 RESULTS:

Maffra Eagles (65) defeated by Moe Meteors (78)
Lakes Entrance Pelicans (32) defeated by Korumburra Wildcats (103)
Moe Meteors (101) defeated Lakes Entrance Pelicans (28)
Warragul Warriors (83) defeated Korumburra Wildcats (72)

Picture credit: Basketball Victoria

MUVJBL U18 Boys VC preview: Round 9

THE regular season reaches a close in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Boys Championship Division with each side fighting for the best possible position in the lead up to finals.

Kilsyth Cobras (1st, 13-1-3) vs Nunawading Spectres (3rd, 13-4)

The finals preview between Kilsyth Cobras and Nunawading Spectres has a lot on the line for both sides. Kilsyth currently holds top spot, boasting a second chance and home final in the coming weeks. Nunawading has cemented their second-chance spot, sitting two wins ahead of Dandenong (fourth) in third. The Spectres will be determined to get up in this contest as they look to catch one of the two home-final spots still up for grabs. Though with their success on the road (8-1-0), a home final might not be the advantage they hope for. Comparatively, Kilsyth boast an unbeaten record in front of the home crowd, which, interestingly, will be tested against the competition’s best away record. Josh Duach will look to get up for the Cobras, having averaged 14.1 points per game (PPG) for the season. Similarly, league-scoring leader, James Roche, will be expected to maintain his dominant form for the Spectres.

Melbourne Tigers (6th, 10-7) vs Werribee Devils (13th, 8-9)

Sitting one spot out from the finals, the Werribee Devils will be looking to lift when they travel to MSAC to face the Melbourne Tigers on Friday. Over the last month Werribee’s record has been less than ideal, losing three of their last four games. Comparatively, the Tigers have won two of their last four, which includes a 29-point thrashing against Bulleen last week. Mathematically, a second-chance opportunity is still available for Melbourne as they sit just one win below the fourth-placed, Dandenong Rangers. Over the last fortnight, Jordan Adams and Patrick Twigg have been standouts for Melbourne. Adams’ ability was made known in their clash with Bulleen, scoring 18 points, while Twigg led with 12 in their win over Keilor. For Werribee, Darrien Herbert emerged last week with 15 points, while Makur Jongkuch dominated in their tight clash with Nunawading. Sitting sixth and seventh for PPG, big things will be expected for this pair.

Dandenong Rangers (4th,11-4-2) vs Korumburra Wildcats (14th, 7-10)

Dandenong will look to stay in touch with the top-four when they face the Korumburra Wildcats. Currently, the Wildcats sit at the bottom of the table but are still a chance to make finals if a few results fall their way. Dandenong sit ineligible for a top-two spot but continue to have their spot threatened with Melbourne just one win behind. Last week, they suffered a critical one-point loss to Nunawading, while Korumburra fell short against bottom-end rivals, Diamond Valley (73-65). In this week’s match-up, Harrison Bowater and Riley Simmons will be expected to fire for the Rangers, having averaged 12.5 and 10.9 PPG. The pair will be up against equal-best league scorer, Keith Robinson. Robinson dropped 28 points in Korumburra’s loss to Diamond Valley, moving his average to 20 PPG. Luis D’Angelo is also expected to fire for the Wildcats, sitting thirteenth with 13.1 PPG.

Keilor Thunder (10th, 9-8) vs Diamond Valley Eagles (12th, 8-9)

Diamond Valley Eagles head to Keilor Park this week where they hope to cement their finals spot with a win over the Thunder. Both teams recorded wins against bottom-end sides last week, with Keilor getting the better of Werribee and Diamond Valley defeating Korumburra. The stakes ramp up for both sides this week, with the threat of missing finals a reality for both. Jeffrey Ofoedu (17) and Tonga Matapule Otutaha (16) were big in Keilor’s win last week, while Paul Tsapatolis continues to lead in PPG (19.8) after dropping 22 points in Round 7. For Diamond Valley, Ethan Bateman has been standout with 11.5 PPG in 17th for league average. Ryan Hoffman and Joseph Brazier will also look to maintain form from last week, having drop 17 points each in their win over Korumburra.

Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 12-3-2) vs Bendigo Braves (11th, 8-8-1)

With the top-two still presenting for three teams, the Bulleen Boomers should look to cement their second spot with a comfortable win over the Bendigo Braves. The Boomers currently hold at two consecutive wins with one of the better percentages in the game. Over the last fortnight, they earned victories against Melbourne (41-70) and Korumburra (72-62), while Bendigo fell consecutively against two other top four sides in Dandenong (80-60) and Kilsyth (70-55). A loss for Bendigo may mean missing finals, with two teams below also on eight wins, and one below them on seven. Anthony Dell’Orso continues to be Bulleen’s greatest scoring threat, having recorded 18 points in last week’s clash to move to fifth across the league. Owen Foxwell also remains a threat with 13.4 PPG, while Bendigo’s equal-first league-scorer, Caleb Connick, looks to close out the league on top with 20 PPG.

MUVJBL U18 Boys VC review: Round 8 – Kilsyth locks up minor premiership

THIS week in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Boys Championship Division, Nunawading Spectres drastically hurt the Dandenong Rangers’ chances of securing a home-final following their 70-69 victory. The Spectres added to their impressive away record (8-1-0) with their second win on the road in a fortnight. Despite Dandenong’s game-high 29 points in the final term, Nunawading refused to let them back in – recording a similarly impressive 23 points to close out the game. James Roche, Curtis Brecko and Dihan Wigget all impressed on the floor – recording 19, 16 and 10 points respectively. Roche moves to top spot for league scoring (157) and fourth for points per game (PPG) on 19.8, while Brecko moves to sixteenth with 11.8. Joshua Heywood came to play for the Rangers – recording a game-high 20 points alongside Jyelin Moli (16) and Zac Taylor (12) who assisted well on offense.

Kilsyth Cobras continued their hold at the top of the table following their 70-55 win over the Bendigo Braves. The Braves sit seventh after losing their second game in a fortnight, with only one round to go. On the other hand, the Cobras secured the minor premiership sitting three points clear of Bulleen and Nunawading unable to catch them with a point at least to come their way in the final round. In the contest, Kilsyth opened the first term strong at 21-7. Bendigo fought hard to close the second term’s margin to five (17-12) before tying (17-17) and winning (15-19) the remaining terms. Though it was not enough with James Duach and Eythan House dominating the floor with 14 points each for the game. Duach’s performance moves him to eleventh spot for PPG on 14.1. Similarly, William Smythe and Levi Geyer tied for Bendigo on 11 points each – impressing in the absence of Caleb Connick and Dyson Daniels.

Following their 70-41 thrashing over the Melbourne Tigers, the Bulleen Boomers moved to second on the table with one win to go. Given Melbourne’s fifth position, the margin comes at a shock, especially given their victory over the third placed Nunawading Spectres, only two rounds ago. The result marks Bulleen’s second win in a fortnight as they continue to vie for a home-final in the coming weeks. They opened strong in the contest – outscoring Melbourne 21-6 before conceding their only losing term (16-10) in the second. Bulleen went onto double Melbourne’s score in both remaining terms to walk home 29-point victors. Anthony Dell’Orso moves to fourth spot for PPG following his 18-point performance for Bulleen. Otto Mananov and Oscar Hyde followed next on 13 and 12 respectively, while Jordan Adams (18) led on the floor for Melbourne alongside Justin Bond (9).

In one of the tightest games of the round, Keilor Thunder earned a 58-55 victory over Werribee Devils. The win moved Keilor one win below fifth, while Werribee sliped outside of finals territory with one round remaining. The loss marks three consecutive for the Devils after losing similarly to Nunawading (57-63) in the round prior. In the match-up, Werribee owned the second-half – outscoring the home-side 22-28. Though despite their efforts, the Thunder opened significantly better – outscoring 36-25 to ease comfortably into the second-half and subsequent victory. Jeffrey Ofoedu led for Keilor with 17 points alongside Tonga Matapule Otutaha, who followed close with 16. For Werribee, Darrien Herbert was at usual best – recording 15 points alongside Kane Hynes’ 13. Hebert’s efforts move him to fifth for PPG from eight outings.

The Diamond Valley Eagles continued their push for finals following their 73-65 win over the Korumburra Wildcats. After losing to Kilsyth in the round prior, a win was absolutely necessary for Diamond Valley to continue competing for finals. In the contest, both teams opened well with Diamond Valley trailing 13-14 at the end of the first. The Wildcats bolstered their lead in the second with a 22-12 term – taking a 25-36 lead into the break. The Eagles responded perfectly in the second half to hit back-to-back 24-point terms – outscoring their visitors 48-29 to pick up an eight-point win. Ryan Hoffman and Joseph Brazier were impressive for the Eagles – scoring 17 points each. The Wildcats boasted top performances from league-leader, Keith Robinson, and Luis D’Angelo (13th) who scored 28 and 19 points respectively.

In the Reserve grade, the Ballarat Miners snared a 66-48 win over the Dandenong Rangers, the Knox Raiders fell 53-58 at home over the Casey Cavaliers, while the Eltham Wildcats proved dominant at home over the Ringwood Hawks (69-65). The round continued with the Collingwood All-Stars defeating the Geelong Supercats at home (50-38) and the Waverley Falcons coming up short against the Hawthorn Magic (56-72).

In the Championship Division for Round 9, the Dandenong Rangers host the Korumburra Wildcats, the Keilor Thunder face the Diamond Valley Eagles, and the Kilsyth Cobras host one of games of the round against the Nunawading Spectres. The round finishes with the Melbourne Tigers hosting the Werribee Devils, and the Bulleen Boomers hosting the Bendigo Braves.

MUVJBL U18 Boys VC preview: Round 8

A TOP three clash headlines Round 8 of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-18 Boys Championship Division with the bottom four sides battling for the last two spots in the eight.

Dandenong Rangers (3rd, 11-3-2) vs. Nunawading Spectres (2nd, 12-4)

The match of the round pits third placed Dandenong Rangers against second placed Nunawading Spectres in what could eventuate into a battle for a home final. The teams are on the same amount of points, with the Spectres having one extra win, but one extra loss as well compared to the Rangers’ two draws. The Rangers have only lost one game at home and the Spectres are seven from eight on the road, so it makes for an enticing contest. Harrison Bowater (13.1 points per game) and Riley Simmons (12.1) have been crucial for the Rangers this season and could form a damaging duo, while Nunawading’s James Roche (19.7) will be a danger to watch, as will his teammate Curtis Brecko (11.1). The winner all but takes second spot if they do not stumble in the final round before finals.

Kilsyth Cobras (1st, 12-1-3) vs. Bendigo Braves (10th, 8-7-1)

Top-of-the-table Kilsyth Cobras should not have any problems against Bendigo with an unbeaten run at home from seven games against a Braves outfit that is just two from seven on the road. The Braves are actually sixth on the table when it comes to Championship Division finals, but are still only three points clear of the division cellar dwellers in Korumburra. If they can cause an upset they are guaranteed finals, but a loss and the sides below them move a step closer, though they would need to lose both remaining matches to drop out. As for the Cobras, they could drop to third mathematically with two losses, but will likely secure the minor premiership this round with a superior percentage to all bar Dandenong. Josh Duach (14.1 points per game) and David Okwera (12.2) have been the key scorers, going up against overall division leading scorer Caleb Connick (20.0), who would love to see Dyson Daniels (15.0) return with the young star missing due to National Basketball League (NBL)1 and national representative commitments.

Diamond Valley Eagles (13th, 7-9) vs. Korumburra Wildcats (14th, 7-9)

The bottom two sides clash in what is effectively the last chance saloon for one of the sides to make finals. The loser will be out of the finals race, while the winner will leap frog the loser of the Keilor Thunder-Werribee Devils game and put themselves into the top eight sides. The Eagles are just three from seven at home, while the Wildcats are not any better on the road, with two from seven. What works in the Wildcats’ favour is the fact that the Eagles are yet to win since the post-grade split, dropping seven consecutive games after heading into the new grade as 7-2. Korumburra’s Keith Robinson has been a source of points, averaging 18.7 points per game, teaming well with Brodie Mabilia (12.6) and Luis D’Angelo (12.2), while Diamond Valley looks to Ethan Bateman who is leading the side with 12.1 per game.

Keilor Thunder (12th, 8-8) vs. Werribee Devils (11th, 8-8)

Sitting seventh and eighth in the division, it goes without saying a win in this game is crucial. The winner is set to play finals, while the loser will drop outside the top eight meaning their finals hopes will then rely on favourable results in the last round. Keilor has dropped its past five games and are just three from eight at home, while Werribee has not won for a few rounds now and sit with three wins from seven games on the road. Neither side has a great percentage, both well below the two teams chasing them, meaning a loss here would all but end finals chances. Paul Tsapatolis was a welcome return for Keilor in Round 7 averaging the second most points of any player with 19.8 points per game this season, while Werribee relies on two key shooters in Darrien Herbert and Makur Jongkuch who have the identical output of 15.0 points per game.

Melbourne Tigers (5th, 10-6) vs. Bulleen Boomers (4th, 11-3-2)

The other game set to create interest is the fourth and fifth clash at Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC). A win for Melbourne will draw them within two points and give the Tigers hope they can snatch fourth spot with a win in the final round, but any other result assures the Boomers of a double chance. The Tigers are safe from Bendigo overtaking them unless they lose twice and the Braves win both remaining games. Melbourne has an even spread of scorers with Ezrah Vaigafa, Lyzel Mataika and Patrick Twigg combining for an average of 31 points per game. The Boomers have a number of high volume scorers with Anthony Dell’Orso (17.3 points per game), Owen Foxwell (14.1) and Nicholas Woodall (12.3) all key players.