Tag: kyle bowen

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

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

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

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

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

Aussies Abroad: Kyle Bowen (Saint Mary’s Gaels)

IN our Aussies Abroad series so far, we have predominantly focused on those Seniors exiting their college years, or taking a look at the Juniors about to embark on their final seasons at their respective clubs. In today’s edition, we take a look at freshman, Kyle Bowen who is one of four Australians on the roster at Saint Mary’s Gaels. An impressive forward, Bowen made his way to college after spending time with the Perth Wildcats in the National Basketball League (NBL) 2018/19 season. This came after a four-game stint with the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence where he he had strong all-round game averages of 9.5 points, 7.8 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.3 blocks.

In crossing to the other side of the world and taking up a college career with Saint Mary’s, Bowen often came off the bench for 11.1 minutes per game and had 1.7 points and 1.9 rebounds. While the stats hardly jump off the page, he showed he can still contribute when on court, having 25 minutes against Pepperdine Waves in the West Coast Conference Tournament semi-final where he had six points, three rebounds, two steals and one assist in a double-overtime win. The Gaels ended up winning the tournament with a victory against BYU Cougars by a point, with Bowen picking up six rebounds, an assist and a block from 13 minutes.

Given his relatively young status in college basketball, Bowen was always going to have limited minutes, but he has high potential, and often the Sophmore years are where those players who do have high potential come to shine. He is an accurate shot maker and takes his chances, while the 204cm forward’s rebounding ability is a strength. He showed that during the 2019 Asia Cup where he averaged 13 points and 10 rebounds for Australia. With appearances at the Under 18 FIBA World Cup and Under 17 Oceania Championships, Bowen is certainly a future senior Boomer and will be one to watch for Saint Mary’s over the next few years.

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

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

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

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

NBL Round 5 review: Long turns it on for United as they end Kings’ undefeated reign

SHAWN Long and his Melbourne United teammates ended Sydney Kings’ reign as the only undefeated side in the competition, producing a thrilling 107-104 win in the final game of the National Basketball League (NBL) competition on Monday night. Long rocketed to the top of the Draft Central Medal with five votes from his two games, while in other results, Brisbane Bullets picked up a couple of wins, including a classic over Perth Wildcats. Sydney also survived a thrilling contest with an overtime win against Adelaide 36ers.

New Zealand Breakers (93) defeated Cairns Taipans (85)

New Zealand grabbed its second win of the season with an important victory over a determined Cairns’ side to leapfrog the Taipans and move into sixth spot on the table. The Breakers did the bulk of the damage early, piling on 22 points to 11, before managing to maintain the 11-point lead at the main break. Cairns dug deep to cut into the margin by six for a five-point deficit at the final break, but New Zealand took control once again to win the last term and run out eight-point victors. Corey Webster was the dominant scorer on the court for the winners, sinking 23 points, as well as eight assists, three rebounds and two steals, while RJ Hampson added 18 points of his own as well as three steals, two assists and two rebounds. Brandon Ashley was the other double-figure scorer, picking up a double-double on the night containing 14 points and 11 rebounds. For the Taipans, it was Cameron Oliver who was busy once again with 23 points, five rebounds and three blocks, while Scott Machado (11 points, 10 assists and three rebounds) continued his sensational season form. Majok Deng (18 points, seven rebounds), Kouat Noi (16 points, six rebounds) and DJ. Newbill (15 points, seven rebounds) were all strong off the boards, but could not keep control of the ball with the visiting side having 18 turnovers and only having two points off their bench compared to the Breakers’ 22.

DC Medal: 3 – Corey Webster (NZ), 2 – Brandon Ashley (NZ), 1 – Cameron Oliver (CT)

Brisbane Bullets (87) defeated Perth Wildcats (78)

Brisbane grabbed a top four place with an all-important nine-point win over a highly fancied Perth Wildcats outfit on Friday night. The Bullets lead by one point at the first change, but extended their lead at each change, winning every quarter and just doing that bit more to get home. In the end, the 87-78 result was testament to a great four quarter effort, even if there was not a complete domination in any one term. Lamar Patterson was again terrific, sinking 16 points, seven rebounds, four assists and two steals, while Jason Cadee had a team-high 17 points, four rebounds and five assists. Taylor Braun (12 points, four rebounds and two assists) and EJ Singler (10 points, two rebounds and two assists) were also busy on the scoring end. For the Wildcats, it was no surprise to see the damaging duo of Terrico White (23 points, five rebounds and two assists) and Bryce Cotton (15 points, four rebounds and two assists) strong but not as dominant as they have been, while Chris Steindl contributed 11 points off the bench.

DC Medal: 3 – Lamar Patterson (BB), 2 – Jason Cadee (BB), 1 – Terrico White (PW)

South East Melbourne Phoenix (98) defeated by Melbourne United (110)

Melbourne United successfully achieve redemption in Throwdown II, defeating their cross-state rivals, South East Melbourne Phoenix by 12 points in a twilight Saturday evening game. In what was one of the individual performances on the year, Long tore the game apart early and delivered a massive 31 points, 11 rebounds, two assists and one block as United won three of the four quarters, including opening up a 13-point advantage at half-time. Long was far from alone on the scoring front though, with Chris Goulding adding 24 points, three rebounds and three assists, while Melo Trimble and Mitch McCarron both had 13 points and four rebounds apiece. For the Phoenix, Mitch Creek was the highest scorer with 23 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, while John Robertson (16 points, five rebounds and two assists) and Ben Madgen (16 points, four rebounds and two assists) were also consistent. The win meant Melbourne moved out of the bottom two, while the Phoenix slipped two games behind top spot to sit just one win clear in third spot.

DC Medal: 3 – Shawn Long (MU), 2 – Mitch Creek (SEM), 1 – Chris Goulding (MU)

Adelaide 36ers (96) defeated by Sydney Kings (98)

Ware there was a will, there was a way, and Casper found that way with a vital two-point floater in the last minute, helping ease the nerves of the visiting team for his Kings to remain undefeated in season 2019/20. It was a bitter blow to the 36ers, who looked home and hosed having built a mammoth final term comeback after trailing at the final change in a momentum-swinging contest. Remarkably, Sydney scored its lowest quarter score and highest quarter score in back-to-back quarters, and came from 12 points down to lead by nine at three quarter time. A huge effort by a previously quiet Daniel Johnson willed his side back into the contest, sinking 13 points in the final term, but it all came down to a Anthony Drmic lay-up which tragically hit the rim and back out in the last second of regulation for the Kings to breath a sigh of relief. Then in overtime, Johnson – who averaged 91 per cent from the free throw line coming into the game – had the chance to level the scores from the line but missed both, only for Ware to trick Ramone Moore up the other end and instead of shoot for the triple, sidestepped him and put up the successful floater. It turned the tide in overtime gave the Kings enough breathing space to sensibly hold on and get a two-point win. Andrew Bogut was mammoth in the first three quarters, having Johnson’s number with 18 points and 12 rebounds, while Jae’Sean Tate was best on court for his 16 points, eight rebounds, five assists and two steals. Ware who was virtually unsighted early came to play in overtime, finishing with 14 points, two rebounds and three assists. Brad Newley (15 points, eight rebounds and four assists) and Didi Louzada (17 points, five rebounds and three assists) were the other busy Kings. For the 36ers, Johnson stepped up in that final term to finish with 17 points and 11 rebounds, while Jerome Randle (23 points, four rebounds, four assists and two steals) and Moore (18 points, six rebounds) were also prominent in what was one of the games of the season.

DC Medal: 3 – Jae’Sean Tate (SK), 2 – Andrew Bogut (SK), 1 – Anthony Drmic (AD)

New Zealand Breakers (79) defeated by Perth Wildcats (84)

While both these sides came into this game with differing results from a couple of days prior, it was the visiting side that came away from the win to bounce back from the loss to Brisbane. Perth had to come from six points down at the main break to have an outstanding third term, piling on 31 points to 21 to lead by four at the final break. In a tight final quarter tussle, it was the Wildcats who did enough to secure the win against the Breakers to win, 84-79. Dario Hunt sank 21 points and had 11 rebounds in a big double double effort, while White (18 points, seven rebounds and three assists) was also big with his partner-in-crime, Cotton missing from the side. Nick Kay had 13 points, four rebounds and three assists on the night, while young gun Kyle Bowen became the creator with seven assists – one third of his team’s total. For the Breakers, Ashley stood tall once again with 21 points, five rebounds and two steals, while Webster was the home team’s best with 21 points, six rebounds and six assists. Hampton was busy as per usual with nine points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals, but it was not enough to help his side get the win.

DC Medal: 3 – Corey Webster (NZ), 2 – Terrico White (PW), 1 – Dario Hunt (PW)

Illawarra Hawks (69) defeated by Brisbane Bullets (83)

Brisbane capped off a strong weekend with a second victory, this time over Illawarra Hawks thanks to a fast start. The Bullets fired from the first tip-off, scoring 27 points to 15 in the opening term, then piled on 26-17 in the second to lead 53-32 by half-time. While the Hawks hit back in the second half to win the final two quarters and bridge the gap, it was too little, too late for the home side. Nathan Sobey was prominent on the scoring end with 18 points, five rebounds, two assists and a steal for the Bullets, while Cadee (16 points, three rebounds and three assists) and Matt Hodgson (15 points, nine rebounds and one assist) were also big scorers. It was Patterson’s work on the defensive end and playmaking up the attacking end which stood out however, posting up 11 points, eight rebounds – all defensive – and seven assists in the big win. For the Hawks, LaMelo Ball was a lone hand in terms of scoring, putting up 19 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three steals, while Todd Blanchfield (10 points, three rebounds) was the other player to reach double figure points. The result meant Brisbane finished the round in third, while Illawarra remain rooted to the bottom of the able after eight games.

DC Medal: 3 – LaMelo Ball (IH), 2- Lamar Patterson (BB), 1 – Nathan Sobey (BB)

Melbourne United (107) defeated Sydney Kings (104)

The home crowd delight was evident in Melbourne United handing Sydney Kings’ their first defeat of the season as United continue their strong form of late, which included knocking over Southside Flyers earlier in the round. For the Kings, it was an unlucky three-point defeat, given the game had started promisingly to lead by four points at quarter time and seven at the main break. It was at this point that Sydney’s coach, Will Weaver was ejected from the game following two technical fouls after he provided some advice to the referees for some untoward behaviour towards Tate. It changed the course of the game somewhat as Melbourne’s stunning third term of 28-21 got United back on track and level with the Kings, then overran them in the final term by three points to win by that exact margin in one of the games of the season. Three United players reached 20 points on the night, with Trimble putting up 27 points, three rebounds and five assists, followed by Goulding (22 points) and Long (20 points, 14 rebounds and three assists), while McCarron (12 points, eight rebounds) and David Barlow (13 points, six rebounds) were also impressive on the court in a strong team effort. It was a bitter sweet homecoming for Ware, who was best on court with a massive 34 points against his old side, also amassing five rebounds and four assists in the defeat. Daniel Kickert (13 points, three rebounds) and Shaun Bruce (13 points, eight assists) and Craig Moller (nine points, seven rebounds) were others who stood tall despite not putting up as many points.

DC Medal: 3 – Casper Ware (SK), 2 – Shawn Long (MU), 1 – Melo Trimble (MU)

DC Medal Leaderboard:

15 – Shawn Long (MU)
14 –
13 –
12 – Bryce Cotton (PW)
11 – Lamar Patterson (BB), Mitch Creek (SEP), Andrew Bogut (SK), LaMelo Ball (IH)
10 – Jae’sean Tate (SK)
9 –
8 – John Robertson (SEM), Scott Machado (CT), Cameron Oliver (CT), Casper Ware (SK)
7 – Nick Kay (PW)
6 – Daniel Johnson (AD), Corey Webster (NZ), Melo Trimble (MU)
5 – Aaron Brooks (IL), Scotty Hopson (NZ), Eric Griffin (AD), Terrico White (PW)
4 – Nathan Sobey (BB)
3 – Brad Newley (SK), AJ Ogilvy (IL), Sek Henry (NZ), Brandon Ashley (NZ), Dario Hunt (PW)
2 – Matt Hodgson (BB), Jason Cadee (BB)
1 – DJ. Newbill (IL), Majok Deng (CT), Dane Pineau (SEM), Chris Goulding (MU), Anthony Drmic (AD)

NBL1 Men’s round two recap: Three teams left unbeaten after two rounds

BALLARAT Miners, Albury Wodonga Bandits and Kilsyth Cobras are the only three sides remaining undefeated in the National Basketball League (NBL)1 competition after two rounds, having won both their encounters thus far. While Nunawading Spectres sit atop of the table, they have a 3-1 record, albeit with a healthy percentage of 116.

For the five sides that played out two games across the weekend it was good news for three of them as Nunawading Spectres, Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE) and Dandenong Rangers all had back-to-back victories, while for Diamond Valley Eagles, that had two nail-biting losses which equated to just a combined seven points, while Bendigo Braves also went down in both their matches.

Nunawading had no troubles dismissing Hobart Huskies in the Apple Isle, posting up 53 points to 31 in the first half, then surviving a third quarter challenge to eventually secure a 93-72 win. Tom Wright was superb with 24 points, including 10 from 15 from the field, while Dain Swetalla scored 22 points with eight from 12, while also recording nine defensive rebounds and three assists in the victory. Jacob Richards (15 points) and Jack Stanwix (10 points, four rebounds) were the best for the home side.

The Spectres doubled up in Tasmania with a 92-79 victory over North West Thunder. Level at quarter time, the Spectres scored 29-19 in the second term to breakaway and lead by 10 at the main break. By the last quarter, Nunawading held a 13-point lead over the Thunder and eventually enjoyed that margin at the final buzzer. Swetalla was again busy with 23 points, 13 rebounds – 11 defensive – shooting at 69.2 per cent from the field. Simon Conn was also prolific with 22 points, 17 rebounds – 13 defensive – and two assists as they did as they pleased off the back boards. Shane McDonald (17 points, five assists and four rebounds), Costa Hronopoulos (13 points, four rebounds) and Wright (12 points, three assists) were others who impressed on the night. Nick Banyard was the dominant player for the Thunder, posting up 18 points and six rebounds, while Lachlan Dent finished with 15 and two, as well as three assists.

After losing two of their first three games in Round 1, Basketball Australia CoE bounced back with two wins, defeating Bendigo Braves away, 87-72 with a memorable second half which saw the future stars of the Boomers scoring 48 points to 28. Alex Ducas had a game-high 23 points, as well as six rebounds, two assists and two steals, while Isaiah Lee finished with 12 points – including all 12 attempts from the foul line – as well as two assists. Hunter Goodrick (16 points, five rebounds) and Kyle Bowen (10 points, 11 rebounds and six assists) were others who stood tall in the win. For the Braves, Ray Turner had 18 points and a massive 16 rebounds, while Matthew Andronicos finished with 12 points, six rebounds and two assists.

In the second game, the CoE knocked off Diamond Valley Eagles by just two points in a see-sawing contest. Ducas was superb in front of the ring, scoring 29 points, while Goodrick had 13 rebounds to go with his 19 points, four assists and three blocks. Josh Kunen stepped up with 17 points, seven rebounds and five assists, while Lee also reached double-figure points with 13, as well as four assists and five rebounds. Ben Allan was best on court for the Eagles with 20 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and a steal, while Liam Thomas had 12 rebounds to go with 15 points, two assists and three blocks. Darcy Harding was also busy with 20 points and four rebounds.

It was a heartbreaking weekend for the Eagles, who also fell to the Dandenong Rangers on Sunday in an 81-76 loss. Trailing by 10 at the final break, the Eagles stormed home to score 17 points to 12 in the final term, only to fall agonisingly short by five points. Harding was again big with scoring, finishing with 18 points, while Allan had 14, as well as 10 rebounds, three assists and three blocks. Joel Spear was another Eagle who flew high with 13 points, five rebounds and four assists. For the winning Rangers, Sam Froling had a game to remember with 24 points, nine rebounds – seven defensive – and one assist. Tim Lang also starred with 15 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and two steals, while Lucas Barker (14 points, six assists and four rebounds) and Keil Leaupepe (12 points) were others who contributed in the win.

The day before, Dandenong had a nice seven-point win over Southern Sabres. Barker top-scored with 19 points and four rebounds, as well as five assists and two steals. Froling (17 points, 12 rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block) and Tyler Robertson (18 points, three rebounds and two assists) were others who impressed in the victory. The Sabres suffered their third consecutive loss with the defeat, despite the best efforts of Melbourne United’s David Barlow who scored 22 points, 10 rebounds – nine defensive – and five assists on debut for the Sabres, while Sam McDaniel (14 points, five rebounds) was also impressive for the losing side.

In other results, Albury Wodonga Bandits won a high-scoring thriller against Ringwood Hawks, 105-100. Ken-Jah Bosley was simply unstoppable for the Bandits as he produced a 37-point, seven-assist and two-steal game in the five-point win. Deba George had 24 points, seven rebounds and eight assists in the win, while Jacob Gibson and Joey Miller combined for 42 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists for the Hawks. Ballarat Miners remained undefeated with an eight-point win over Bendigo Braves, as Sam Short finished with 24 points, three rebounds and three assists, while Kuany Kuany scored 21 points, six rebounds, five assists and two steals. For the Braves, Deonte Burton‘s debut was impressive, scoring 30 points at 64.3 per cent from the field, while also helping himself to four rebounds and six assists. Meanwhile Geelong Supercats defeated Knox Raiders, 88-72 as Lewis Thomas and Demarcus Gatlin combined for 42 points, 20 rebounds, eight assists and six blocks; Waverley Falcons came from behind to overrun Eltham Wildcats in an 89-84 win with Deondre McWhorter on fire thanks to 27 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks; and Melbourne Tigers enjoyed a 102-91 win over Frankston Blues. Nic Pozoglou scored 25 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, combining well with Dane Pineau (21 points, 15 rebounds and five assists), while Frankston Blues’ Damon Bozeman scored the second most points of the round, posting 33 as well as six rebound and two assists, and Majok Majok had a mammoth 17 rebounds.

Round 2 Results:

Hobart Huskies 72 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 93
Bendigo Braves 72 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 87
North West Thunder 79 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 92
Southern Sabres 83 defeated by Dandenong Rangers 90
Geelong Supercats 88 defeated Knox Raiders 72
Diamond Valley Eagles 84 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 86
Albury Wodonga Bandits 105 defeated Ringwood Hawks 100
Ballarat Miners 94 defeated Bendigo Braves 86
Eltham Wildcats 84 defeated by Waverley Falcons 89
Melbourne Tigers 102 defeated Frankston Blues 91
Dandenong Rangers 81 defeated Diamond Valley Eagles 76

NBL1 Men’s round one recap: Kilsyth Cobras claim back-to-back victories

KILSYTH Cobras have finished Round 2 with a pair of victories to sit atop the brand new National Basketball League (NBL) 1 ladder. The Cobras knocked off Knox Raiders 93-67 before backing up the victory with a five-point win over Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (CoE).

In the first match, Peter Hooley sunk a team-high 17 points in the win, also recording three rebounds, five assists and three steals in the win, while Isaac Turner finished with 13 points, two assists and two rebounds, albeit with just one shot made from three-point range from eight attempts. Owen Odigie was massive off the boards, picking up 14 rebounds, 11 of which were defensive as well as four points. Chris Patton had a strong all-round game with 10 points, six rebounds and five assists.

Turner backed up his impressive first game with 23 points, including five of 13 from long range, while also recording three assists, two rebounds and two steals. Hooley had another 17 points in the win over CoE, four rebounds and a steal, while Patton finished with four rebounds and three assists from 11 points. Tohi Smith-Milner was the biggest improver from game one to game two, posting 18 points, 13 rebounds (eight defensive), three assists and two blocks.

Looking across the league, both Tasmanian sides enjoyed victories over Southern Sabres in the Apple Isle. North West Thunder had an eye-opening 33-point win over the Sabres. Tre Armstrong sunk 32 points including eight from 13 from three-point range. Lachlan Gent was able to get creative at both ends, posting 10 points as well eight assists and seven defensive rebounds. Jordan Bowling was the other standout for the Thunder with 14 points, four assists and six defensive rebounds. Nick Banyard and Paul Campbell recorded a team-high eight rebounds each, as well as a combined 16 points. James Cigognini and Sam McDaniel both posted 11 points as well as a combined nine rebounds. Rhys Carter had six of his team’s 15 assists.

The day before Hobart Huskies escaped with an eight-point win over the Sabres, coming from four points down at the final break to fire 34 points to 22 in the last quarter to run over the top of their opponents with an 88-80 win. Jalen Adams was the star of the show with 26 points, seven rebounds and and three assists, while Zachary White (14 points and eight rebounds) and Matthiang Muo (12 points) were also prominent on the boards. Cigonini, Carter, McDaniel and Jaden Weldon were standouts for the Sabres, scoring double-figure points as well as a combined 21 rebounds.

Despite registering two losses over the weekend, the future of Australia’s talent stunned Dandenong Rangers in the opening game of the round, recording a 99-88 victory. Alex Ducas scored 18 points and had seven rebounds, six of which came off the defensive boards. Kyle Bowen used his time at Perth Wildcats to good use, being busy around the court with 15 points, eight assists and three rebounds, while Hunter Goodrick finished with 16 points and four rebounds. For Dandenong, Lucas Barker was a lone-hand in the forward half, sinking 30 points, six rebounds and four assists. Tim Lang (13 points) and Tyler Robertson (12) were other Rangers who stood tall in defeat.

For the other teams that played two matches across Round 1, both Nunawading Spectres and Waverley Falcons split their results. The Spectres were too good for Geelong, recording a 23-point win away, before heading home to fall seven points short of a second win against a determined Ballarat Miners outfit. For the Falcons, they won away against Frankston Blues in an eight-point victory, before falling to Albury Wodonga Bandits at home by three. In other results, Eltham Wildcats defeated Diamond Valley Eagles by six points, Ringwood Hawks smashed Basketball CoE by 35 points, and Bendigo Braves knocked off Melbourne Tigers away in a four-point game.

Round 1 results:

Dandenong Rangers 88 defeated by Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 99
Geelong Supercats 70 defeated by Nunawading Spectres 93
Hobart Huskies 88 defeated Southern Sabres 80
Frankston Blues 99 defeated by Waverley Falcons 107
Nunawading Spectres 87 defeated by Ballarat Miners 94
Diamond Valley Eagles 86 defeated by Eltham Wildcats 92
North West Thunder 96 defeated Southern Sabres 63
Ringwood Hawks 105 defeated Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 70
Knox Raiders 67 defeated by Kilsyth Cobras 93
Kilsyth Cobras 93 defeated Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence 88
Waverley Falcons 77 defeated by Albury Wodonga Bandits 80
Melbourne Tigers 69 defeated by Bendigo Braves 73

Young Gun Spotlight: NBL – Semi-finals

WHILE it was not the most exciting National Basketball League (NBL) semi-final battles over the weekend, some of the competitions young stars were shining. A lot of our leagues youngsters were included on the bench, with some getting looks. Brian Bowen was competitive for the Kings, as was Tom Wilson in their losses. The other team to lose, Brisbane, were assisted by AJ Davis. The team’s into the Grand Final – Perth and Melbourne – have talent on the bench, but greater firepower were selected over them across their games.

Sydney Kings – #11 Brian Bowen

A slow start to his first playoff appearance, only grabbing two points at Melbourne Arena. However, Bowen was good otherwise with five rebounds (two offensive) and three assists – the equal-most of Sydney this game. Adding to a defensive game, he saw himself grab a steal and two blocks. Bowen managed 13 and a half minutes in the Kings second loss of the series and contributed well for his first post-season. He put up five points, but scored the second-highest rebounds of his team with six, two of those being offensive rebounds.

Brisbane Bullets – #11 AJ Davis

Davis had a great game against the Wildcats in Perth. In almost 18 minutes he scored seven points at 60 per cent and the second-most team rebounds with six (two being on the offensive end). In Brisbane, he finished with eight points (80% from inside). He had four rebounds and a block and steal each too.

Sydney Kings – #7 Tom Wilson

Not the best series for Wilson who played four minutes in total across the two games, and didn’t score a basket. He only put up one shot in each game, but at home on Sunday, he added an assist. In a positive, he ended both games with a +/- of one, despite the Kings being comprehensibly beaten.

Melbourne United – #14 Tohi Smith-Miller

The United forward, like Wilson wasn’t used a lot during the series. With only three minutes court time overall, he did put up two shots but didn’t convert either.

Melbourne United – #55 Venky Jois

Jois had a nice start to the series, shooting one of one for two points in Melbourne, a game which included a defensive rebound. He did see any court time in Sydney though.

Perth Wildcats – #26 Rhys Vague

Another young guy who didn’t see much time on court, two minutes in the first game, where he pulled down one rebound. Vague didn’t play against the Bullets in Brisbane.

Melbourne United – #30 Sam McDaniel

McDaniel was on court in both games, but didn’t make a dent on the scoreboard, nor did he have any rebounds or assists.

Brisbane Bullets – #12 Will Magnay

Like others, he played in the loss in Perth for two minutes but didn’t put down any stats, and had no time in Brisbane.

Perth Wildcats – #10 Kyle Bowen

Bowen played more than a minute and a half at home for one rebound, in his third game of the season.

Perth Wildcats – #9 Wani Swaka Lo Buluk

Another player who didn’t see any action, he’s only played three games this season.

Brisbane Bullets – #4 Tyrell Harrison

Harrison was part of the side in Brisbane but didn’t get on court, and wasn’t included in the squad for the Perth trip.

Melbourne United – #5 Sam Short

Short played two minutes in Melbourne, but didn’t make a dent on the stats sheet.

Brisbane Bullets – #9 Callum Dalton

Dalton was part of the squad in Brisbane, but didn’t get on the court for the Bullets loss.

Victoria goes back-to-back at Under-20 Men’s national championships

VICTORIA’S Under-20 Men were crowned national champions on Sunday for the second consecutive year after triumphing in their gold medal clash over Western Australia. Victoria’s Ivor Burge Men and Ivor Burge Women also medalled at the tournament, picking up silver in their competitions.

An elite defensive effort set up Victoria’s 76-69 triumph over Western Australia in the gold medal clashh on Sunday afternoon. An emphasis was put on shutting down the West Australian’s impressive roster, including national junior team members Swaka Lo Buluk and Luke Travers, which Victoria did, but not without a struggle. Tyler Robertson (14 points) and Keli Leaupepe (15 and nine rebounds) both stood up in clutch moments to both hit the scoreboard and shut down the dangerous West Australian pair.

With 26 points off the bench, including a second term spree from Kobe Williamson (10 points), Victoria had built a handy lead by half-time. Piece-by-piece the defensive strength of the reigning champions allowed opportunities for shooters to add scoreboard pressure up the other end. Robertson’s four treys set the tone early, while the inside-outside games of Leaupepe and Josh Bannan (12 points and 11 rebounds) made life difficult for their opposition. Western Australia threatened to steal the points at times with Kyle Bowen (22 points, 17 rebounds and six assists) simply dominating, but the overall consistency and strength of the Victorian side saw the team bring home the Jack Terrill Trophy.

Victoria Under-20 Men’s head coach, Chris Anstey said after identifying some areas of improvement earlier in the tournament, the team had come together and put out its best performance in the decider.

“It was nice to continually get better over the course of the week,” he said. “There were a few flaws in what we were doing early and I thought that was our best game defensively and we were really sound. “I think Western Australia had an incredible tournament and we certainly knew how tough they were going to be. “But when it came down to it, our boys were used to playing on the bigger stage and we executed well, got over a few nerves early and the best game for the tournament was the one that mattered.”

Victoria had a number of players who have now graduated from the junior pathways, with Leaupepe, Robertson, Sean Macdonald, Deng Dut, Josh Kunen, Oliver Hayes-Brown and Sam Taulapiu all multiple national championship winning players following their time as elite Victorian juniors.

Pic: Basketball Victoria

In the other men’s grades, South Australia defeated Victoria 85-76 with the winners’ fast start the key to victory. South Australia lead 22-9 at the first change before Victoria hitback. Victorian shooter, Jake De La Motte sunk 30 points, while James Debetta had a massive 18 rebounds to go with his eight points, but South Australia ultimately proved too strong. Jordan Palmer was massive off the boards and up the offensive end with 24 points and 12 rebounds, while Keenan Georg-Dent was everywhere with 11 points and 13 rebounds for the winners. Zachary Georg-Dent scored 20 points, six rebounds and had six assists in a consistent effort across the match.

Meanwhile, Victoria A finished sixth overall in the same division, and the Under-20 A Men finished seventh, with a win over the NBA Global Academy on the final day, 82-75.