Tag: nbl1 women

NBL1 Women’s stats update: June 10

WITH all four National Basketball League (NBL)1 competitions well underway this season, we look at who is leading the stats in points, rebounds and assists across the board in the women’s divisions.

POINTS

CENTRAL

#1 Olivia Thompson (South Adelaide) 27.33
#2 Teige Morrell (Southern Tigers) 21.55
#3 Samantha Simons (Forestville Eagles) 21.22
#4 Ashley Spencer (South Adelaide) 20.22

NORTH

#1 Amanda Johnson (SWM Pirates) 29.0
#2 Stephanie Reid (Townsville Flames) 28.0
#3 Kathleen MacLeod (SC Phoenix) 22.6
#4 Mikaela Ruef (Logan Thunder) 22.4

SOUTH

#1 Keely Froling (Launceston Tornadoes) 33.85
#2 Emma Mahady (Albury-Wodonga Bandits) 23.87
#3 Jenna O’Hea (Sandringham Sabres) 23.71
#4 Mariah Payne (Launceston Tornadoes) 22.8

WEST

#1 Samantha Lubcke (Willetton Tigers) 24.25
#2 Makailah Dyer (Perth Redbacks) 22.0
#3 Alex Sharp (Willetton Tigers) 21.50
#4 Tayah Burrows (Rockingham Flames) 20.42

ASSISTS

CENTRAL

#1 Jordan Hunter (South Adelaide) 9.77
#2 Alex Wilson (Norwood Flames) 5.62
#3 Mollie McKendrick (Eastern Mavericks) 5.44
#4 Taylor Ortlepp (North Adelaide) 4.77

NORTH

#1 Rachael McCully (SC Phoenix) 8.8
#2 Myra Donkin (Cairns Dolphins) 7.8
#3 Kathleen MacLeod (SC Phoenix) 7.8
#4 Mikaela Cann (Logan Thunder) 7.4

SOUTH

#1 Tessa Lavey (Frankston Blues) 7.66
#2 Tess Madgen (Bendigo Braves) 6.57
#3 Amy O’Neill (Sandringham Sabres) 5.71
#4 Monique Conti (Melbourne Tigers) 5.66

WEST

#1 Maddison Allen (Perth Redbacks) 5.85
#2 Tayah Burrows (Rockingham Flames) 5.42
#3 Nicole Jorre de St Jorre (Warwick Senators) 5.0
#4 Alex Sharp (Willetton Tigers) 5.0

REBOUNDS

CENTRAL

#1 Olivia Thompson (South Adelaide) 13.11
#2 Jess Good (North Adelaide) 12.55
#3 Mollie McKendrick (Eastern Mavericks) 10.88
#4 Emily Winter (Woodville Warriors) 10.77

NORTH

#1 Mikaela Ruef (Logan Thunder) 17.8
#2 Cayla George (Mackay Meteorettes) 17.25
#3 Amanda Johnson (SWM Pirates) 16.0
#4 Lara McSpadden (Rockhampton Cyclones) 12.83

SOUTH

#1 Anneli Maley (Eltham Wildcats) 24.62
#2 Keely Froling (Launceston Tornadoes) 17.71
#3 Alicia Froling (Ballarat Rush) 15.14
#4 Kelsey Griffin (Launceston Tornadoes) 13.4

WEST

#1 Alex Sharp (Willetton Tigers) 13.5
#2 Maddison Allen (Perth Redbacks) 11.57
#3 Carly Boag (Mandurah Magic) 11.14
#4 Mary Goulding (East Perth Eagles) 11.0

Picture credit: NBL1

NBL1 South women’s team summary: Southern Sabres

IN light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 South Conference has been cancelled this year. As such, while Draft Central intended to do a preview on all teams leading up to the delayed start, it will instead be a team summary from last season and what they might look to improve on for 2021. Today’s edition looks at Southern Sabres womens side that finished 16th overall.

2019 in Review:

Finished: 16th
Wins: 4
Losses: 16
Home: 0-10
Away: 4-6

What went right:

  • Won two of the first six
  • Competitive – Seven losses by single digits including two in the last three games
  • Defeated a couple of finalists on the road in Dandenong Rangers and Frankston Blues
  • Rachel Jarry’s season
  • Steals (9.6 per game ranked fourth overall)
  • Bring youth through the system

The 2019 NBL1 season was definitely about providing games to some of the Southern Sabres’ talented youth prospects coming through the program. Heading into the season, there were eight players aged 20 or under on a large list, while just three were above 26. Their season on court might be hard to find positives in terms of pure results, but they were competitive at different points, coming close with seven losses by single digits, including two one-point defeats in the final three rounds. They were able to defeat a couple of finalists on the road in Dandenong Rangers and Frankston Blues, and started solidly considering their youth, winning two of the first six. Their away record was actually okay considering a lot of non-finalists finished with worse, winning four of a possible 10 games on the road, needing to just improve their home record. They ranked inside the top five for steals with 9.6 per game, while forward, Rachel Jarry had a superb season, almost averaging 20 and 10 from a points and rebounds perspective. Sure it is easy to say that 2019 did not go to plan, but there were still areas that the Sabres could pick out as positives for the future.

What went wrong:

  • Did not win a game at home
  • Scoring (71.7 points per game ranked 17th overall)
  • Accuracy (41.1 per cent two-point and 27.9 per cent three-point ranked in the bottom three)
  • Rebounding (23.2 defensive and 34.8 total, ranked last overall)

As already mentioned, it is easy to pick out things that did not quite go to plan, but there were a lot of near misses. The Sabres did not win a game at home for a start, and after the first six games, would only win two more in the last 14. They came close on a number of occasions and could have won a couple of the late ones, but they struggled with the fundamentals. Ranking in the bottom three for scoring, accuracy and rebounding, the Sabres just could not match it with the top sides in that regard. Had they made more of their chances and had a greater impact off the boards, then those narrow losses might turn into wins, which is something to be optimistic about for the future if they can tweak certain aspects of their game.

Top Players:

Rachel Jarry

Jarry was the standout player from a Sabres perspective, who racked up team-high totals in points, rebounds, assists and steals. She played every game for the season, almost putting up 400 points for an average of 19.6 per game, to accompany 8.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.9 steals as well. Her field goal accuracy was a low 37.7 per cent, but when heading to the line, she was reliable with 82.2 per cent. Providing a strong presence defensively, Jarry added more than six defensive rebounds a game and a block every two games, denying the opposition in the air or pickpocketing them around the court.

Tenaya Phillips

The forward was 24 coming into the season and averaged 14.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.9 steals, working her way off the bench on six occasions to start in 10 games. In the end she started the fourth most of any player on the side, and was the most reliable three-point shooter on the team with 26 makes for an efficiency of 37.7 per cent. She also averaged 46 per cent from the field and 70 per cent from the line, committing fewer turnovers and personal fouls than others on court and working well in tandem with Jarry.

Amy O’Neill

A late inclusion to the side, O’Neill finished the season with nine games but had an impact in that time, averaging 11.8 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.8 steals and a team-high 4.6 assists. She facilitated a lot of plays on the offensive end with her passing and it was that area which the Sabres lacked at times. O’Neill brought that point of difference, and while she was not a long-range shooter, she still managed 44.8 per cent from the field and a terrific 85 per cent from the free-throw line. O’Neill came into the side after finishing college with St Francis and used her ball handing abilities to give the team confidence going forward.

Young Gun:

Ella Batish

There are plenty of young guns who could have slotted into this spot, but Batish earns the nod having the highest efficiency rating of the lot. She averaged 9.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game, taking the court in 19 of a possible 20 games. She was the most accurate shooter from the field with a 47.4 per cent efficiency, and also made her free throws count more often than not. In her early 20s, Batish looms as a player for the future standing at 189cm and able to match the more experienced opposition players in the five position.

Christmas list for 2021:

Scoring power. The team just needs to pick up the scoring and the wins will come. They had plenty of young guns coming through the ranks, led by a number of solid contributors who were able to get close on a number of occasions and win a few tight games. If they can add a couple of players who can average double-figure points and ideally five or more rebounds per game, then facilitating the scoring will be easier.

Summary:

The Southern Sabres might not have had on-court success in 2019, but were able to provide plenty of experience to younger players in the side and it will hold them in good stead for the future. If they can add more firepower and build their transition offence to be more damaging, then watch out in the coming years.

NBL1 South Women’s team summary: Nunawading Spectres

IN light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 South Conference has been cancelled this year. As such, while Draft Central intended to do a preview on all teams leading up to the delayed start, it will instead be a team summary from last season and what they might look to improve on for 2021. Today’s edition looks at Nunawading Spectres, a side that reached the final four from sixth before running into eventual premiers, Kilsyth Cobras.

2019 in Review:

Finished: 6th (Preliminary final loss)
Wins: 12
Losses: 8
Home: 6-4
Away: 6-4

What went right:

  • Out-performed their pre-finals ranking by making the final four
  • Six players averaged double-figure points
  • Three starters played every game
  • Scoring (79.4 points per game and 47.4 per cent two-point accuracy, ranked fifth overall, as well as 33.9 per cent three-point accuracy ranked third overall)
  • Blocks (3.4 per game ranked equal fifth overall)

The Nunawading Spectres had a really strong overall side which featured six players who averaged double-figure points across the journey. Of those six, three were starters who played every game of the season, and were able to lead the scoring charge for the team. Offence was a clear strength for the Spectres, as they went on to be ranked in the top five for total points, two-point and three-point accuracy which made them hard to stop when they were on fire. As well as getting the job done offensively, they were tight defensively, denying their opposition on average 3.4 times per game with strong blocks. Despite finishing sixth with 12 wins from 20 games and just a solid win-loss record at both home and away (6-4), the Spectres stood up in the finals series, knocking out Ringwood Hawks in straight sets and advancing to a preliminary final. Additionally, the Spectres had an abundance of youth on the team and were setting up for a huge future.

What went wrong:

  • Preliminary final
  • Discipline (17.2 personal fouls per game, ranked fifth overall)
  • Turnovers (12.5 per game ranked 14th overall)

The last three quarters of the preliminary final are something the Spectres would like to have back after only trailing the eventual premiers by a point at quarter time. Unfortunately Nunawading was simply outplayed in those final three terms, scoring 38-60 to go down by 23 points at the final buzzer. Statistically throughout the season the Spectres were generally solid across the board, but could do with a few tweaks of cleaning up both their discipline and turnovers with a top five finish in both personal fouls and turnovers.

Kathleen Scheer

One of only two players above 25 years of age, Scheer guided her young side throughout the season and was a consistent performer across the board. Of those players to take to the court in 10 games or more, Scheer recorded team-highs in points (14.5), rebounds (8.0), assists (3.3) and blocks (1.4). The 190cm forward was bale to provide a reliable source of scoring when fouled and sent to the line with a 77.4 per cent efficiency rate, whilst she was okay from the field with 46.3 per cent success.

Rebecca Pizzey

One of plenty of young talents, the then 20-year-old lit up the NBL1 season by matching it with many of her more experienced opponents on her way to a strong contribution off the boards. Finishing the season with 11.1 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game, Pizzey became a great aide teaming up with Scheer in the forward half of the court, and was more accurate as well despite a lower volume of shots, shooting at 53.8 per cent from the field, 65.2 per cent from the line and 33.3 per cent from long range.

Rachel Antoniadou

Remarkably one of the older group at just 22-years-old entering the 2019 season, Antoniadou was the third player to play in all 23 games. She was elite from the free-throw line with 40 makes from 46 attempts, and also provided her team with great value from long-range, putting down 35 threes from 99 attempts. She averaged 11.2 points. 3.4 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.0 steals per game in a solid season from the 173cm pocket rocket.

Young Gun:

Chelsea D’Angelo

There is a Melbourne Cup field of worthy entrants in the Young Gun category, but D’Angelo showed for Adelaide Lightning in the 2019/20 season what she had developed during the NBL1 season. Whilst she only started on 10 occasions from 19 games played, she averaged the 14.0 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.5 steals in a real balanced season. Capable of shooting from anywhere, she was strong from the line with a 78.8 per cent accuracy, and left little doubt that the young gun has a huge future.

Christmas list for 2021:

A playmaker to base the offence around. Looking at how the season panned out and the performance of all players, it was clear the Spectres had a really even team and did not rely upon one shooter, Aside from the players already mentioned, Maddie Garrick only played the eight games and Eliza Chilcott finished with 13 as both averaged double-figure points. With the highest points scorer being 14, adding a real dominant player to lead the offence would have been the cream on top. Perhaps someone like a Cayla George would be a perfect addition for this side.

Summary:

The Nunawading Spectres were like a jigsaw puzzle that you could see had almost all the pieces to be complete. They just lacked that final piece to take them to the next step, and if they can bounce back, bring in George and reload for 2021, then this side will be a real danger and deserve to be up in the top couple of teams in terms of premiership contention.

NBL1 South Women’s team summary: Kilsyth Cobras

IN light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 South Conference has been cancelled this year. As such, while Draft Central intended to do a preview on all teams leading up to the delayed start, it will instead be a team summary from last season and what they might look to improve on for 2021. Today’s edition looks at Kilsyth Cobras who claimed the inaugural NBL1 title in a sensational year.

2019 in Review:

Finished: 4th (Premiers)
Wins: 14
Losses: 5
Home: 7-3
Away: 7-3

What went right:

  • Won the title – nothing better than that
  • Won 16 of their last 18 games
  • Lauren Nicholson’s season
  • Clean (10.9 turnovers per game the second least overall)
  • Assists (19.8 per game, fourth overall)
  • Rebounds (41.5 per game, second overall)

It was a dream season after a shaky start with the Cobras taking out the 2019 NBL title by winning 16 of the 18 last games. It was a remarkable turnaround from the opening few weeks and really showed what they were capable of. Statistically the Cobras were impressive across the board, but the standout stats were their ball-handling and rebounding. Ranked second overall in total rebounds with 41.5 per game, and fourth overall in assists (19.8 per game), they were able to win the ball defensively and use it well in transition. Additionally, the Cobras did not turnover the ball often, with just 10.9 turnovers per game which ranked as the second least overall. Furthermore, Lauren Nicholson led the way with a huge season that saw her rewarded with All-Star honours, and was a catalyst for the Cobras charge to the title from fourth on the table.

What went wrong:

  • Not much
  • Started the season with three losses in the first four games
  • Only scored more than 100 points once

You can hardly fault a season where a team wins a title and clearly in the end you could not say anything went ‘wrong’ as such. But the areas that could have gone better were the start and potentially averaging more points per game, but both proved not to be an issue by season’s end. The Cobras looked in trouble after five matches, sitting 1-4. They turned it around after that and while they only scored more than 100 once (against Hobart), they restricted their opponents to 70 points or more on all bar two occasions in the regular season.

Top Players:

Lauren Nicholson

Only 25-years-old entering the season, Nicholson is in the prime of her career and it showed on the court this season with a remarkable year. She averaged 25.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 1.7 steals per game, playing in 20 of a possible 23 games for the season. It was even more impressive that she stepped up in the finals series, guiding her team to victory with plenty of talent alongside her. Averaging 54.4 per cent from the field, 36.9 per cent from three-point range and 83 per cent from the line, it is easy to see why she earned All-Star honours.

Klara Wischer

Ranking second overall in points, Wischer averaged 13.2 per game to go with 7.9 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1,7 steals per match. She was most effective from inside the arc with 47.9 per cent efficiency, though she was still solid from outside the arc with a 30.8 per cent accuracy. Playing every game of the season, Wischer took to the court 26.4 minutes per game as she was one of six players to average more than 20 minutes a match in an impressive season.

Sarah Boothe

The premier rebounder of the team came close to averaging a double-double from her 21 games. In 24.4 minutes per match, Booth averaged 12.0 points and 9.8 rebounds – 3.5 offensive – to lead the team in both rebounding categories. She also picked up 2.4 assists per game and almost a block as well, providing good service from the field with 50.2 per cent efficiency. The 28-year-old center used her strong frame to advantage each game.

Young Gun:

Kara Tessari

The young gun in the side and one who not only played her part but was a clear standout in the starting team, averaging 29.4 minutes from every game. It might be easy to forget Tessari was just 20-years-old entering the season such was her impact on the year, but she averaged 10.5 points, 3.6 assists, 1.7 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game. Tessari is one to watch for the future as she continues to develop alongside experienced names.

Christmas list for 2021:

List retention. Any side that wins a title it is crucial to try and keep the team together and the Cobras are unlike most teams. They relied on a real balanced approach without a couple of players doing all the heavy lifting. Instead, with six players averaging more than 20 minutes and another three reaching double-figure minutes per match, they rotated players well and it proved effective.

Summary:

The Kilsyth Cobras might have had a rocky beginning to 2019, but by year’s end were the premier team in the competition. Form is everything, and with 16 wins from 18 games to cap off a year after a 1-4 start, that is some kind of momentum. With the confidence gained from 2019, if the Cobras can remain the same and maybe even strengthen their list, then there is no reason Kilsyth cannot challenge for back-to-back titles – even if they are two years apart.

NBL1 South women’s team summary: Bendigo Braves

IN light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 South Conference has been cancelled this year. As such, while Draft Central intended to do a preview on all teams leading up to the delayed start, it will instead be a team summary from last season and what they might look to improve on for 2021. Today’s edition looks at last year’s minor premiers in the women’s competition, Bendigo Braves who fell in the finals series.

2019 in Review:

Finished: 1st (lost in Preliminary Final)
Wins: 19
Losses: 1
Home: 9-1
Away: 10-0

What went right:

  • Ridiculous regular season, only dropping one game
  • 12-game winning streak heading into finals
  • Kelly Wilson’s season
  • Offence (ranked first in two-point field goal percentage and free-throw percentage, and assists, and second for overall points)
  • Disciplined (least personal fouls with 12.7 per game)

Prior to the finals series, it was hard to really find too much of a chink in the Braves’ armour. They finished minor premiers ahead of Geelong comfortably, and even had a big 30-point win over the – albeit understrength – Supercats in the final round of the season. Their only loss of the regular season came in round 11 against the Supercats, and with a 12-game winning streak heading into the finals series, few would have predicted what was to follow in the last few weeks of the competition. Aside from how it ultimately finished, the Braves were a dominant side both at home (9-1) and on the road (10-0) and were the clear standout team when it came to offence. They were ranked the top of the competition in both two-point field goal and free-throw percentage, which ensured they were getting the points whether they were fouled or not. They were also creative in their attack, able to find targets through opposition defences, with neat passes which led to assists – they topped the competition in that statistic as well – whilst remaining disciplined with the least personal fouls per game at just 12.7. In other words, so much went right except August.

What went wrong:

  • The finals series
  • Blocks (ranked 14th overall with just 2.2 per game)

Had this review been up until the end of the regular season, it would be a real head scratcher to find too much wrong with the season. They had only had the one loss to the Supercats and were firing on all cylinders come August. No one would have predicted a shock loss to Kilsyth Cobras in the qualifying final – with the Cobras sneaking into fourth, but Kilsyth racked up a whopping 16 offensive rebounds to five, and beat the Braves at their own assist game (25-22). The finals series by the experienced Lauren Nicholson was out of this world, and the qualifying final was no exception, though Sarah Boothe‘s 21 points and 17 rebounds – eight offensive and nine defensive – is what won the Cobras’ the match. A heartbreaking loss to Geelong on the road in the preliminary final ended the Braves’ chances at a flag, but they could certainly look back on a wonderful season, even if they did not get reward for effort.

Top Players:

Kelly Wilson

An incredibly player who is almost super-human with her endurance, averaging a mind-boggling 38.4 minutes per game in the 40-minute matches. She had almost 350 attempts from the field, and got to the line for 135 free throws, averaging 87.4 per cent for the latter. Finishing the season with 19.3 points, 19.5 assists and 6.4 rebounds, as well as 2.0 steals, it was no surprise to see Wilson named as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) in the competition. Received a lot of plaudits for her season and deserved it too, with the 34-year-old like a fine wine.

Rebecca Tobin

A rebounding machine, Rebecca Tobin was simply remarkable off the boards, averaging 13.3 rebounds per game, with 9.3 off the defensive end and 4.0 from the offence to try and create second chance points. She also finished the year with 2.6 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.6 blocks in a really consistent season, and would have been in MVP calculations too had it not been for Wilson’s unbelievable season which just topped her and Tobin could only manage the 15 games. Unlike her teammates, Tobin did not try and shoot outside her limits, with the 30-year-old center only making one three-point attempt and mostly using her bigger frame to get to the line to muscle her way in to the basket.

Gabrielle Richards

Richards provided a two-prone attack off the boards with Tobin, averaging 9.2 rebounds per game and coming close to a double double herself. She averaged the 14.1 points and played every game of the season, also picking up two assists and one steal per game. Like Wilson, the 34-year-old was strong and used her bigger body to advantage around the basket, which is what made the Braves such a dominant team with two stars rebounding it so consistently every match.

Young Gun:

Danielle O’Toole

The Braves do not have as much youth as other sides, with their experience leading them to the minor premiership and as a title contender. But with three teenagers named on the list at the start of the season, it was O’Toole who managed to get on court the most with 13 games, albeit with an average of just under five minutes per match. She made up for lost time however, putting up 3.4 points per game, which is almost a point-per-minute. Most impressively, O’Toole looms as a long range shooter, averaging 46.4 per cent from three-point range, sinking 13 of 28 attempts, ranking first for accuracy in the side, and equal fifth for attempts despite much less time on court.

Christmas list for 2021:

Young depth. Bendigo’s core group of players are elite talents, but are still the wrong side of 30 and with another year on, will begin the season with a couple of 36-year-olds and a few more past 30. Tessa Lavey (27-years-old by next year’s season start) looms as the youngest starter, and while some of the teenagers got minutes, it will be about blooding the next group of players to come through the Braves program. Hopefully the veterans will look to go a week longer and push on in 2021 for a strong season.

Summary:

They came so close to a title in 2019, and will be hungry to go better in 2021. There are questions around the age profile of the group, but with the form they were in for last season, it is hard to doubt them. If anything, a season off might prolong the careers of some of the veterans who earn a much needed rest. Bendigo will be a team to watch and if the list can relatively remain stable, then the Braves will be the team to beat.

NBL1 weekend preview: Rivalry Round heats up

AFTER a week to refresh and prepare for the second half of the season, the National Basketball League (NBL)1 competition is back in a special Rivalry Round. While the Round 10 fixture features 20 games across both men’s and women’s competitions, less than most other rounds, it is one that will get plenty of fans to the games as they hope to take down their rival.

From the NBL1 men’s perspective, there are two massive top four clashes to get fans excited in what could genuinely be a preview for the finals ahead. Top-of-the-table Ballarat Miners dropped a rare game last week but remain a game clear of their opponents, third placed Geelong Supercats, with two games in hand. The Supercats are 5-2 at home, while the Miners are 7-1, with these two sides the top scorers in the competition, while the Miners can exploit the Supercats defence, while maintaining their own which is ranked first for least points conceded. The other big game is between Nunawading Spectres and Melbourne Tigers with the second and fourth clash also set to shape the ladder leading into finals.

With Kilsyth Cobras and Dandenong Rangers taking on bottom three sides – Knox Raiders and Southern Sabres respectively – wins in the top-four battles are crucial. Rounding out the teams in the top eight, Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence plays just its second home game against Frankston Blues who have charged up from nowhere to sit inside the top eight. The winner will at least remain inside the finals positions, making it important to take home the points with so many teams chasing them. One of those sides is Waverley Falcons, with the tenth placed Falcons taking on bottom two team Ringwood Hawks. A victory will at least have them percentage out of the eight, much like Bendigo Braves if they can come back from Albury Wodonga with the points. The loser of Hobart Huskies and North West Thunder will find it hard to make finals, while the same can be said for the clash between Diamond Valley Eagles and Eltham Wildcats who are on five wins apiece.

In the women’s competition, the clash between Kilsyth and Knox is sure to provide plenty of highlights as the Cobras push for a top four spot, while Knox holds onto the precious third spot, with games in hand. One side that desperately needs a win is Dandenong Rangers, a team that has dropped its past three games, but a match with bottom two side Southern Sabres should surely break the streak. Sixth placed Nunawading Spectres has a chance to break into that top four group with a win over tenth placed Melbourne Tigers, while Ringwood Hawks can stay in touch with the top four if they overcome Waverley. The top two sides face teams in the bottom eight, with Bendigo Braves looking to extend on their five-game winning streak and hand Albury Wodonga Bandits their fourth straight loss, while the 11-game red-hot run of Geelong Supercats is predicted to continue when they host twelfth placed Ballarat Rush.

In other games, Frankston Blues have the opportunity to remain in touch with the top eight given they have a clash with bottom three side, Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence, while the all-Tasmanian derby between Launceston Tornadoes and Hobart Huskies will rule out a side from finals. Eltham Wildcats are a game adrift of seventh and one game clear of ninth, and are expected to retain the breathing space with a match against the cellar-dwelling Diamond Valley Eagles. A Sunday clash with Knox Raiders makes the Saturday fixture a must win. There is plenty on the line for all sides in a relatively even competition outside the top three sides, in a league that certainly has a mid-table log-jam.

Round 10 Fixture:

Saturday, June 15:

Albury Wodonga Bandits vs. Bendigo Braves
Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence vs. Frankston Blues
Dandenong Rangers vs. Southern Sabres
Eltham Wildcats vs. Diamond Valley Eagles
Geelong Supercats vs. Ballarat Miners/Rush
Kilsyth Cobras vs. Knox Raiders
North West Thunder/Launceston Tornadoes vs. Hobart Huskies

Sunday, June 16:

Nunawading Spectres vs. Melbourne Tigers
Knox Raiders vs. Eltham Wildcats
Waverley Falcons vs. Ringwood Hawks

NBL1 mid-season review: Waverley Falcons

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the Waverley Falcons, whose men’s side is still very much in contention for finals, while the women’s team has a comfortable run home but cannot afford to slip up if they want to snatch a finals spot.

Men:

Position: 10th
Wins: 6
Losses: 5

Home: 2-5
Away: 4-0
Last 10: 5-5

Points For: 952
Points Against: 994
Percentage: 95.8
Points: 18

Summary:

The Falcons are just one win out of the top eight and have two games in hand from three of the sides above them. With a softer run home, they are potentially in line to start favourites in six or seven games and could time their run to perfection. They are undefeated on the road which is a remarkable feat, being one of only two sides to do so this season. Deondre McWhorter (19.7 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.1 blocks) has been the standout player this season, but the Falcons have a nice balance of players including Dylan Travis (18.4 points, 5.2 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 2.4 steals), Bennie Lewis (13.6 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.8 steals) and Chris Arkell (11.0 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists) also among the top stars on a consistent basis this year.

The run home:

R10: Ringwood Hawks (H)
R11: Diamond Valley Eagles (A) | Nunawading Spectres (A)
R12: Southern Sabres (H)
R13: Dandenong Rangers (H)
R14: Ballarat Miners (A) | Knox Raiders (H)
R15: Hobart Huskies (A) | North West Thunder (A)

Waverley have some big games in the run home, including three rounds of two games. The Tasmanian trip is a must-win for Waverley, as are games against bottom three sides, Knox Raiders, Ringwood Hawks and Southern Sabres, with road trips to Nunawading Spectres and Ballarat Miners sure to test their unbeaten record on the road.

Women:

Position: 14th
Wins: 3
Losses: 8

Home: 2-5
Away: 1-3
Last 10: 2-8

Points For: 755
Points Against: 809
Percentage: 93.3
Points: 9

Summary:

Th Falcons sit at three wins from 11 games and it has not been the best of starts to the season when two of those wins came against the struggling Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence, and then a Round 1 win over Frankston Blues. They have been unlucky in a number of games, losing their first four games from Round 2-5 by a combined 14 points and could well have been 5-0 to start the season. Now they must really dig deep if they are to play finals this year. Kelly Bowen (14.3 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.3 steals) has been a shining light this season, while Carley Mijovic (18.0 points, 7.2 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.4 steals) has stood tall in her nine games, as has Tegan Cunningham (11.5 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.5 assists) in eight matches since finishing up her AFL Women’s commitments.

The run home:

R10: Ringwood Hawks (H)
R11: Diamond Valley Eagles (A) | Nunawading Spectres (A)
R12: Southern Sabres (H)
R13: Dandenong Rangers (H)
R14: Ballarat Rush (A) | Knox Raiders (H)
R15: Hobart Huskies (A) | Launceston Tornadoes (A)

The Falcons will need to win eight of their last nine games if they are to secure a spot in the finals series unless other results go in their favour. With games against five of the other bottom seven sides, the Falcons could well pounce and then hope to cause an upset against Nunawading Spectres, Ringwood Hawks, Dandenong Rangers and Knox Raiders who are all finals-bound sides.

NBL1 mid-season review: Southern Sabres

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the Southern Sabres, with both sides set to finish in the bottom couple of teams with just four wins between them. They have looked to just local players this season, and while they have some standout stars and developing young talent, have not been able to always match it with the best sides.

Men:

Position: 18th
Wins: 2
Losses: 10

Home: 1-5
Away: 1-5
Last 10: 2-8

Points For: 1001
Points Against: 1185
Percentage: 84.5
Points: 6

Summary:

It is not pretty reading for the Sabres who sit last on the NBL1 men’s table with two wins from 12 games. They were unlucky at times throughout the season so far, and shocked the competition when they knocked off the undefeated Kilsyth Cobras. The biggest issue for the Sabres is working out a best starting five and with top stars, David Barlow (23.0 points, 8.8 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 0.8 steals) and Sam McDaniel (17.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.5 steals) missing so many games each (six apiece), they have been forced to dig deep into their local talent. Kingsley Box (12.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.0 steals) and Nicholas Gabsch (9.8 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.3 assists) are two of only three players to play every game.

The run home:

R10: Dandenong Rangers (A)
R11: Albury Wodonga Bandits (H)
R12: Geelong Supercats (H) | Waverley Falcons (A)
R13: Frankston Blues (A)
R14: Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (H)
R15: Diamond Valley Eagles (A) | Frankston Blues (H)

When you are on the bottom of the table, every game is a tough game, but the Sabres will be keen to hopefully pick up a few wins on the run home. Games against Albury Wodonga Bandits and Waverley Falcons seems the most likely, while Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence and Frankston Blues have also been inconsistent at times and the Sabres could pounce if the opposition is not on its game.

Women:

Position: 17th
Wins: 2
Losses: 10

Home: 0-6
Away: 2-4
Last 10: 1-9

Points For: 811
Points Against: 985
Percentage: 82.3
Points: 6

Summary:

The Sabres are yet to win at home in season 2019, and have picked up both their wins on the road. Rachel Jarry has been the far and away star with 20.3 points, 9.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Ella Batish (7.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.2 assists) is the only other player to start in every game. Two players who have managed more than 4.4 rebounds per game in limited time off the bench are Sherry Glennie (6.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.8 asssists) and dual sport Australian Rules young gun, Gabby Newton (2.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.4 steals). Tenaya Phillips (10 games from six starts) has been another solid contributor with 13.9 points, 3.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.6 steals per game.

The run home:

R10: Dandenong Rangers (A)
R11: Albury Wodonga Bandits (H)
R12: Geelong Supercats (H) | Waverley Falcons (A)
R13: Frankston Blues (A)
R14: Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence (H)
R15: Diamond Valley Eagles (A) | Frankston Blues (H)

Much like the men’s side, when you are sitting near the bottom of the table, every game is difficult. But there are some real opportunities for the Sabres, with games against the sides directly above and below them on the ladder in Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence and Diamond Valley Eagles. Winning these games will more than likely save them from finishing bottom, while also having matches against bottom eight sides Waverley Falcons, Frankston Blues (twice) and Albury Wodonga Bandits.

NBL1 mid-season review: Nunawading Spectres

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the Nunawading Spectres, with both sides in contention for a double chance, especially the men’s side who is unbeaten at home with a 9-3 record.

Men:

Position: 2nd
Wins: 9
Losses: 3

Home: 3-3
Away: 6-0
Last 10: 8-2

Points For: 1100
Points Against: 971
Percentage: 113.3
Points: 27

Summary:

The Nunawading Spectres’ men’s side have a remarkable unbeaten record on the road – the only side to do so this season. They have been consistently strong all year, and aside from consecutive home losses to Frankston Blues and the lowly Knox Raiders, have impressed from start to finish. No-one has started in every game, with Dain Swetalla and Simon Conn the two standouts this season, possibly the best one-two duo in the competition. Swetalla is averaging 20.4 points, 10.5 rebounds and 2.5 assists, while Conn is not far off a double-double average as well with 19.9 points, 9.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists. Tom Wright (17.8 points, 3.3 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.3 steals) and Shane McDonald (9.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 7.3 assists) have been the two playmakers in the team, setting everything up.

The run home:

R10: Melbourne Tigers (H)
R11: Kilsyth Cobras (A) | Waverley Falcons (H)
R12: Ringwood Hawks (H) | Diamond Valley Eagles (A)
R13: Knox Raiders (A)
R14: Kilsyth Cobras (H)
R15: Eltham Wildcats (A)

The Spectres have a tough start to the run home, but it eases off with some easier games down the track. The next two matches – Melbourne Tigers at home and Kilsyth Cobras away – loom as the two big games, while they also have the Cobras at home in Round 14. Otherwise, they face all bottom 10 sides, with only the Falcons above twelfth, including two games against bottom three sides, Knox Raiders and Ringwood Hawks. They will be keen to win as many as they can – and are capable of winning the lot – to secure a double chance.

Women:

Position: 6th
Wins: 8
Losses: 4

Home: 5-1
Away: 3-3
Last 10: 7-3

Points For: 963
Points Against: 878
Percentage: 109.7
Points: 24

Summary:

Despite losing two of their past four games – both to top four sides, the Spectres have still maintained a strong start to the season with an 8-4 record. They have been impressive at home, dropping just the one game – a six-point loss to Bendigo Braves – and remain in contention for a double chance. The critical aspect of Nunawading’s success has been the evenness of the team, with five players scoring more than 100 points thus far in season 2019, and four of them starting in every match for some line-up consistency. Kathleen Scheer (16.0 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 blocks), Rebecca Pizzey (12.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.2 assists), Rachel Antoniadou (11.3 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.0 steals) and Eliza Chilcott (11.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.5 steals) have all been mainstays in the side’s success this season, while Chelsea D’Angelo (14.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.6 steals) has had some massive efforts off the bench.

The run home:

R10: Melbourne Tigers (H)
R11: Kilsyth Cobras (A) | Waverley Falcons (H)
R12: Ringwood Hawks (H) | Diamond Valley Eagles (A)
R13: Knox Raiders (A)
R14: Kilsyth Cobras (H)
R15: Eltham Wildcats (A)

In the run home, the Spectres will be made to earn a double chance if they can achieve it with just two of the remaining eight games against bottom eight sides. Melbourne Tigers (tenth) just outside the top eight might be a tough assignment, while facing off against fifth placed Kilsyth Cobras (twice), third placed Knox Raiders, seventh placed Ringwood Hawks and eighth placed Eltham Wildcats will determine just where they deserve to finish. Win the majority and a double chance is on offer.

NBL1 mid-season review: North West Thunder / Launceston Tornadoes

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the North West Thunder / Launceston Tornadoes, with the Thunder still in contention for a top eight spot if everything goes their way, while the Tornadoes are out of the finals race, but will be keen to finish strongly.

Men:

Position: 13th
Wins: 5
Losses: 7

Home: 2-4
Away: 3-3
Last 10: 5-5

Points For: 1048
Points Against: 1095
Percentage: 95.7
Points: 15

Summary:

It has been an inconsistent start to the season for the Thunder who recorded a pattern of a win then a loss up until three consecutive losses in the past three matches against Ballarat Miners and Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence in Round 8, and Geelong Supercats in Round 9. At that stage, the 5-4 record looked healthy enough, but now the Thunder have a 5-7 win-loss ratio and need to start putting wins on the board. Tre Armstrong (16.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 0.8 steals) started as a one-man show early, but received support from Nick Banyard (17.4 points, 7.4 rebounds and 2.4 assists) since he has come into the team, while Jordan Bowling (13.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.7 steals) has also picked up with some impressive mid-season performances. Paul Campbell (11.0 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.0 blocks and 0.9 assists) is a key player off the boards, while Lachlan Dent (9.7 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists) might not have big numbers, but has been creative on the attacking end.

The run home:

R10: Hobart Huskies (H)
R11: Geelong Supercats (A) | Knox Raiders (H)
R12: Melbourne Tigers (H)
R13: Kilsyth Cobras (G)
R14: Ringwood Hawks (A) | Diamond Valley Eagles (A)
R15: Waverley Falcons (H)

The Thunder have an all-Tasmanian battle at home against Hobart Huskies, before facing sides at polar ends of the table. It is hard to see the Thunder winning enough of the six games required to make finals given they have to take on Geelong Supercats, Melbourne Tigers and Kilsyth Cobras in successive weeks. The Thunder could have a chance of finals with less wins given the amount of matches they have with sides around them such as Waverley Falcons, Diamond Valley Eagles and Hobart Huskies, as well as Ringwood Hawks and Knox Raiders in the bottom three. If they can cause an upset to one of those top five teams, then top eight is certainly a chance.

Women:

Position: 15th
Wins: 3
Losses: 9

Home: 1-5
Away: 2-4
Last 10: 3-7

Points For: 980
Points Against: 1179
Percentage: 83.1
Points: 6

Summary:

The Tornadoes started the season okay with two wins in the first five games, but have won just one encounter from their past seven – a five-point win over Albury Wodonga Bandits. The other two wins have also been tight with a four-point win over Waverley Falcons and nine-point win over Hobart Huskies. They will be keen to find some form on the run home, but have had to rotate their roster a lot with just two players playing all 12 games. Sarah O’Neill is the only player to have started in every game and has been a shining light with 12.3 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 2.3 steals, while Brittany Hodges has starred across her nine matches, averaging a double-double with 17.7 points. 12.2 rebounds and 1.2 assists. Stephanie Gardner (18.2 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.4 assists) and Stella Beck (12.3 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 2.3 steals) are the other two who have stood out.

The run home:

R10: Hobart Huskies (H)
R11: Geelong Supercats (A) | Knox Raiders (H)
R12: Melbourne Tigers (H)
R13: Kilsyth Cobras (G)
R14: Ringwood Hawks (A) | Diamond Valley Eagles (A)
R15: Waverley Falcons (H)

The run home has the Tornadoes with teams mostly at either end, facing top three sides Geelong Supercats and Knox raiders in Round 11, but the Tornadoes’ final two games come against bottom five sides, Waverley Falcons and Diamond Valley Eagles. Kilsyth Cobras will be a tough clash, while Melbourne Tigers and Hobart Huskies are both mid-table teams striving to make finals. They need to win every match to make the top eight, which seems a touch out of reach.