Tag: olivia morris

2021 VJBL Crossover: Under 18s

THE under 18 grading stage of the Victorian Junior Basketball League (VJBL) for both the boys and girls competition is now complete with second and third from each pool moving through to the crossover stage, as the top of the table sides advanced directly into the Victorian Championship. Eight teams feature in the crossover stage, with four blockbuster games set to take place on Friday night.

Under 18 Boys:

Pakenham won through in Pool A of the boys in Round 3 of the grading thanks to another strong showing to earn a spot in the crossover stage. They are set to take on the Diamond Valley Eagles in the first game of the round with both sides looking to secure that elusive spot in the Victorian Championships. Lauchlan Mark has proven to be a dynamic and reliable points scorer for Pakenham throughout the grading phases and will be eager to maintain that momentum while the Eagles have had a number of players take the reins.

It will be an all country battle as Bendigo and Ballarat face off after finishing second or third in their respective pools. Bendigo have a couple of strong wins under their belt, narrowly edging the Eagles out in Round 1 and will be keen to bring that level of intensity to the fore in this clash. Ballarat on the other hand have struggled to get their signature game play up and running but will see this an opportunity to leave nothing to chance and star.

The next game sees Latrobe and Whittlesea lock horns at Casey Stadium on Friday night with both sides earning a spot in the crossover after their performances in the grading stage. Whittlesea will look to the likes of Callum Stojanovic to lead the way with his offensive skills and overall drive to the rim while Kody Tiballs has proven to be a pillar of consistency for Latrobe throughout their campaign so far.

The final game of the boys crossover is between Sandringham and Wyndham who have both recorded big wins throughout their season so far and will be eager to assert themselves in this contest. The Sabres have multiple options to apply scoreboard pressure with Jensen Bradtke and Tom Field both viable options and needing to have big performances if they are to get their side over the line. However it will all come down to whether or not Sandringham can stop Emmanwiel Deng who has proven to be a thorn in the side for many teams.

Round 1 Boys fixture:

Pakenham v. Diamond Valley
Friday, 19 March @ 9:20pm

Bendigo v. Ballarat
Friday, 19 March @ 9:40pm

Latrobe v. Whittlesea
Friday, 19 March @ 9:40pm

Sandringham v. Wyndham
Friday, 19 March @ 9:50pm

Under 18 Girls:

The opening game of the girls VJBL will play host to Eltham and Camberwell as they look to claim some early ascendancy and go one step closer to their final destination. Eltham showcased their strength throughout the grading phase in Pool B notching up a couple of solid wins with Ashley Mrmacovski a key figure alongside Peyton Burns. Camberwell on the other hand suffered a handful of losses and will be keen to flip the script through the presence of the lively Jacinta Li who managed 31 points in game two.

Nunawading and Korumburra enter the crossover stage after progressing from their respective pools to battle it out for their first win in this grouping. Nunawading have displayed glimpses of their ability to score with ease, something they will be hoping to implement against Korumburra who lost two out of their three outings. There will be no shortage of shooting options for either side with Evelyn Curtis and Olivia Morris key for the Spectres and Charlotte Anderson and Jamie Gallatly able to ply their trade for Korumburra.

Hailing from Pool B, Bulleen has a date with Altona in the third game of the round as the two sides look to inflict some early dominance. Bulleen Boomers had a chequered run throughout the grading phase and will have their work cut out for them against the Gators who managed a couple of wins. Expect Jade Azzopardi to be the main port of call for Altona while the Boomers will look to Chantal Vitale to do the heavy lifting

Led by Caitlin Richardson the clash between Bendigo and Nunawading 2 will be one to watch. Richardson is a key playmaker for the side and her inspired efforts could provide that edge to get over the top of the Spectres. Bendigo know how to win when it gets tight and can use that belief in their upcoming match against Nunawading. The Spectres have a variety of players that can step up to the plate with Emma Poon and Ella Erickson plausible candidates.

Round 1 Girls fixture:

Eltham v. Camberwell
Friday, 19 March @ 8:00pm

Nunawading 1 v. Korumburra
Friday, 19 March @ 8:20pm

Altona v. Bulleen 2
Friday, 19 March @ 9:20pm

Bendigo v. Nunawading 2
Friday, 19 March @ 9:40pm

VJBL U18 Grading Phase Pool 2 wrap: Round 1

THE Victorian Junior Basketball League (VJBL) entered the Grading Phase Pool 2 over the weekend as the teams searched for their first win and eventual ticket to the next phase in the competition. There were a mixed bag of results in both the Under 18 Boys and Girls division with a number of close encounters and blowouts across the league.

U18 Boys

Pool 1A:

Bulleen Boomers kicked things off in style securing a 12-point win over Ballarat with the likes of Amos Harvey and Ethan Wellington combining effortlessly to claim the win. It was much closer in the other game as Waverley worked tirelessly to edge past Pakenham and steal a four point win. Lauchlan Mark was the most dominant figure on the court posting a game-high 20 points despite being on the losing side.

Bulleen Boys 2 (53) defeated Ballarat (41)

Amos Harvey (Bulleen) 15
Ethan Wellington (Bulleen) 14
Ollie McCarthy (Ballarat) 10

Waverley (54) defeated Pakenham (50)

Lauchlan Mark (Pakenham) 20
Matthew Jefferson (Waverley) 13
Sam Haffenden (Waverley) 10
Harvey Moore (Waverley) 10

Pool 1B:

Camberwell made light work of Bendigo Braves, getting comfortably over the top of them by 18 points to start the season on fire. Camberwell shared the points around as five players reached double-figures, with Liam O’Hoy amassing 19 points and leading the way. The other game had a similar outcome with the Eagles flexing their muscles against the Sabres to secure a 32-point win. However, there was somewhat of a shootout between Marley Lambert and Jack Weir as the duo went blow for blow.

Camberwell (85) defeated Bendigo (67)

Liam O’Hoy (Camberwell) 19
Samuel Veitch (Camberwell) 16
Luke McConnon (Camberwell) 14
Josiah Pattinson (Bendigo) 13

Diamond Valley (82) defeated Sandringham (50)

Marley Lambert (Diamond Valley) 20
Jack Weir (Sandringham) 20
Corey Rutherford (Diamond Valley) 17

Pool 1C:

Casey and Sandringham both got the win in their respective matches with both sides impressing in the opening round of grading. Casey ran out with a 20-point win against Nunawading as Blake Shankland impressed with 19 points, while the Sabres powered past Whittlesea by 11 points.

Casey (62) defeated Nunawading (42)

Blake Shankland (Casey) 19
Luke Dimopulous (Nunawading) 14
Ky Taylor (Casey) 12

Whittlesea (50) defeated by Sandringham (61)

Callum Stojanovic (Whittlesea) 20
Jensen Bradtke (Sandringham) 11
Tom Field (Sandringham) 11
Peter Vasilevski (Whittlesea) 11

Pool 1D:

The results in Pool D were relatively close with the biggest winning margin nine points off the hands of Latrobe. Dandenong put the pressure on Latrobe but simply did not have the legs to run with them, as the game got away from them with Finn Boag stepping up to the plate. The other result was decided by a mere four points as Southern Peninsula did enough to sneak past Wyndham and kick things off in style.

Dandenong (56) defeated by Latrobe (65)

Finn Boag (Latrobe) 19
Cody Goonewardene (Dandenong) 17
Kody Tibballs (Latrobe) 14

Southern Peninsula (63) defeated Wyndham (59)

Darcy Jones (Southern Peninsula) 20
Emmanwiel Deng (Wyndham) 17
Corey Hastings (Southern Peninsula) 14


U18 Girls

Pool 1A:

Sunbury claimed the biggest win in Pool A, boasting a 15-point victory while Altona managed to record a five-point win over Camberwell. Wangaratta struggled to get going against Sunbury given their defensive pressure while the battle between Camberwell and Altona did not disappoint with Jacinta Li doing everything humanly possible to keep her side in the hunt with 31 points.

Wangaratta (37) defeated by Sunbury (52)

Maddison Ford (Sunbury) 12
Erin Condron (Sunbury) 11
Maia Roberts (Wangaratta) 9

Altona (51) defeated Camberwell (45)

Jacinta Li (Camberwell) 31
Angelina Vi (Altona) 11
Jade Azzopardi (Altona) 10
Cassie Dodemaide (Altona) 10

Pool 1B:

Eltham pulled off a close one against Bellarine snatching a three-point win to open their campaign while Ringwood reigned supreme over Bulleen. The battle between Eltham and Bellarine brought plenty of excitement as both sides worked in overdrive to create some much needed separation in a hard-fought and closely contested encounter.

Bellarine (38) defeated by Eltham (41)

Ashley Mrmacovski (Eltham) 18
Summer Field (Bellarine) 17
Jessica Del Brocco (Eltham) 10

Ringwood (62) defeated Bulleen (45)

Katrina Warton (Ringwood) 12
Chantal Vitale (Bulleen) 12
Lily Carmody (Bullenn) 10
Ella Grig (Ringwood) 10

Pool 1C:

Nunawading wasted no time getting their first win on the board in the second phase of grading, surpassing Melbourne by 28 points in a comprehensive win. It was not the same story for the other Nunawading side though, as Knox got on top to claim the win by 23 points as a number of players contributed to the scoreboard.

Nunawading (69) defeated Melbourne (41)

Lia Battersby (Melbourne) 17
Olivia Morris (Nunawading) 16
Rebecca Dymalovski (Nunawading) 12

Knox (59) defeated Nunawading 2 (36)

Emma Poon (Nunawading) 13
Gemma O’Donnell (Knox) 12
Zoe Shaw (Knox) 11

Pool 1D:

Bendigo scraped past Dandenong in the second game in Pool D while Kilsyth secured an 11-point win to open their campaign. Kilsyth shared the points around with a number of players hitting the scoreboard in the win while Bendigo were spurred on by Caitlin Richardson who impressed with 20 points to her name.

Korumburra (44) defeated by Kilsyth (55)

Jaime Gallatly (Korumburra) 11
Monai Porykali (Korumburra) 11
Molly Williams (Kilsyth) 10

Bendigo (60) defeated Dandenong (56)

Caitlin Richardson (Bendigo) 20
Ella Johnson (Dandenong) 13
Taylah Rennie (Bendigo) 13

VJBL U18 Grading Phase Pool 1 wrap: Round 2

IN the second round of the Victorian Junior Basketball League (VJBL) Grading Phase Pool 1 wrap, teams began to assert themselves in their respective groups, setting up either virtual grand finals, or setting up likely promotion tilts across the Under 18 Boys and Under 18 Girls grades.


Pool 1A:

Whittlesea Pacers grabbed prime position to advance through to the VJBL Championship division with a win over Melbourne Tigers in Round 2. The battle of the two unbeaten sides saw the Pacers win by five points, 50-45, with Jack Tatter having a day out finishing with 26 points. In the battle between the winless sides, Waverley Falcons got up over Wyndham Basketball by 17 points.

Whittlesea Pacers (50) defeated Melbourne Tigers (45)
Jack Tatter (Whittlesea) 26
Oskar Jones (Melbourne) 15
Jack Hrehoresen (Melbourne) 12

Waverley Falcons (59) defeated Wyndham Basketball (42)
Nemuel Soliven (Waverley) 14
Matthew Jefferson (Waverley) 10
Jacob Bord (Wyndham) 14
Emmanwiel Deng (Wyndham) 12


Pool 1B:

In Pool 1B, it was Nunawading who dominated Eltham Wildcats to move to a 2-0 record and edge closer to automatic qualification. Tristan Devers led the way and was one of seven players on the court who reached double-figures, putting up a match-high 22 points in the 73-58 victory. Meanwhile Hawthorn Magic got past Dandenong Rangers’ second side in a tight five-point win.

Dandenong Rangers 2 (45) defeated by Hawthorn Magic (51)
Ned Caldwell (Hawthorn) 15
Denzel Timmons (Hawthorn) 13
Lachlan Currie (Dandenong) 15

Nunawading Spectres (73) defeated Eltham Wildcats (58)
Tristan Devers (Nunawading) 22
Dean Simos (Nunawading) 14
Lucas Koch (Nunawading) 10
Brody Glenn (Eltham) 17
Kristian Ferronato (Eltham) 14
Zahn Agosta (Eltham) 12
Bradley Moorey (Eltham) 11


Pool 1C:

In Pool 1C it was Bulleen who have completely dismantled their second team in as many weeks, destroying Craigieburn Eagles by 53 points to storm to a massive 224.14 per cent. They are 130 per cent more than any other side, and are raging favourites to go ahead. In the other game, Casey Cavaliers got over Diamond Valley Eagles after a loss to Bulleen in week one, to keep their chances of second spot alive.

Diamond Valley Eagles (34) defeated by Casey Cavaliers (44)
Ethan Bolton (Diamond Valley) 13
Blake Shankland (Diamond Valley) 13
Corey Rutherford (Casey) 9

Bulleen Boomers (79) defeated Craigieburn Eagles (26)
Will Rimmington (Bulleen) 13
Max Zalakos (Bulleen) 10
Lochlan Redford (Bulleen) 10
Oliver Slawinski (Bulleen) 10
Kaan Karabulut (Craigieburn) 7


Pool 1D:

Kilsyth Cobras became the sole undefeated side in Pool 1D after a narrow 11-point victory over Frankston Blues. The two winners from Round 1 engaged in a low-scoring affair, but 16 points from Harrison Adams was the standout performance. The other contest was a free-flowing shootout as Dandenong Rangers claimed a vital two-point win over Pakenham Warriors to move up to second overall following the 64-62 triumph.

Dandenong Rangers (64) defeated Pakenham Warriors (62)
Harrison Scott (Dandenong) 13
Coby Burgiel (Dandenong) 11
Noah Suarjaya (Dandenong) 10
Jarred Small (Pakenham) 22
Kaleb Beveridge (Pakenham) 14

Frankston Blues (35) defeated by Kilsyth Cobras (46)
Harrison Adams (Kilsyth) 15
Seth McCubbin (Kilsyth) 12
Cameron Clarke (Frankston) 7


Pool 1E:

McKinnon Cougars are looking good to move into the VJBL Championship Division following an eight-point win over Bendigo Braves. Both sides won in the first week of the competition, and whilst the Cougars had a lower percentage, they were able to get the job done against the Braves in a 51-43 effort. In the other match, Southern Peninsula Sharks made sure they were a win away from dropping to the next group stage, defeating Eltham Wildcats’ second team by 11 points.

McKinnon Cougars (51) defeated Bendigo Braves (43)
Denver Lund (13)
Luke Lyngberg (10)
Lachlan Somerville (17)

Eltham Wildcats 2 (43) defeated by Southern Peninsula Sharks (54)
Darcy Jones (Southern Peninsula) 15
Corey Hastings (Southern Peninsula) 13
Tarrant Wallace (Southern Peninsula) 11
Anthony Prestia (Eltham) 14


Pool 1F:

Rounding out the Pools was 1F, where Geelong United dominated Sunbury Jets to take control in the sixth group. United won 66-31 in a one-sided performance where Olivier Northam and Jamie Bottrell scored the same amount as the entire Sunbury side. In the other max, Knox Raiders grabbed their first win with a victory over Keilor Thunder, getting up by 18 points.

Sunbury Jets (31) defeated Geelong United (66)
Olivier Northam (Geelong) 16
Jamie Bottrell (Geelong) 15
Jet Kneebone (Geelong) 11
David Angove (Sunbury) 9

Knox Raiders (46) defeated Keilor Thunder (28)
Beau Tranter (Knox) 11
Fraser Roxburgh (Knox) 11
Cooper Colson (Keilor) 9

U18 Girls:

Pool 1A:

The two standout teams have been decided in Pool 1A, setting up a virtual grand final to determine which side automatically qualifies for the VJBL Championships. Dandenong Rangers’ first side was too good for Frankston Blues, winning by 14 points to secure their second win of the group stage, while the Rangers’ second side fell again, this time to an inspired Waverley Falcons outfit by 33 points. It means the winner of the Falcons and Rangers 1 side tonight, automatically qualifies.

Dandenong Rangers 2 (27) defeated by Waverley Falcons (60)
Liana Kinkela (Waverley) 18
Emily Gough (Waverley) 14
Alana Poulton (Dandenong) 7

Dandenong Rangers 1 (42) defeated Frankston Blues (28)
Dallas Loughridge (Dandenong) 13
Zoe Harvey (Frankston) 10


Pool 1B:

Despite being a couple of lower-scoring encounters, Keilor Thunder and McKinnon Cougars have set up a virtual grand final in the third round of the group stage tonight. The Thunder accounted for Sunbury Jets 49-38 as Tess Heal was the star with 19 points, while the Cougars won in a low-scoring thriller, 25-20 to keep themselves in contention for automatic promotion.

Keilor Thunder (49) defeated Sunbury Jets (38)
Tess Heal (Keilor) 19
Erin Condron (Sunbury) 9

Kilsyth Cobras (20) defeated by McKinnon Cougars (25)
Tayja Maki (Kilsyth) 5
Romy Price (McKinnon) 6


Pool 1C:

After losing their first game last week, Bellarine Storm bounced back to record a 12-point win over Melbourne Tigers thanks to 12 points from Alivia Osborne being the difference. Meanwhile Bulleen Boomers have put themselves in pole position to claim the automatic qualification spot after a 43-30 victory over fellow first round winners Knox Raiders, with Tabitha Betson (17 points) being the standout shooter.

Bellarine Storm (31) defeated Melbourne Tigers (19)
Alivia Osborne (Bellarine) 12
Taliyah Gomez-Sankari (Melbourne) 6

Bulleen Boomers (43) defeated Knox Raiders (30)
Tabitha Betson (Bulleen) 17
Paige Burrows (Knox) 10


Pool 1D:

Diamond Valley Eagles moved to two wins from two games in Pool 1D, fending off Hawthorn Magic in what has shaped as the most even group of the lot. The Eagles won against the Magic by just four points to go outright top of the table, as Sophie Burrows starred with 19 points. In the other game, Casey Cavaliers bounced back from a week one loss to win 41-33 over Eltham Wildcats, credit to Dakota Crichton‘s 18 points.

Diamond Valley Eagles (41) defeated Hawthorn Magic (37)
Sophie Burrows (Diamond Valley) 19
Genevieve Broadbent (Diamond Valley) 11
Isabel Whitelaw (Hawthorn) 10
Amy O’Hara (Hawthorn) 10

Casey Cavaliers (41) defeated Eltham Wildcats (33)
Dakota Crichton (Casey) 18
Jessica Del Brocco (Eltham) 13


Pool 1E:

In another tight group, Melbourne Tigers moved to two wins from two games by defeating Altona Gators in a thrilling five-point game. Despite Aseka Ratnayake‘s 18 points for the losers, the Tigers triumphed to move to the top of the group. In the other match, Sandringham Sabres bounced back from a loss in week one to cruise to a 24-point victory over Bendigo Braves, 45-21.

Altona Gators (37) defeated by Melbourne Tigers (42)
Hayley Cumming (Melbourne) 14
Leila Davis (Melbourne) 12
Aseka Ratnayake (Altona) 18

Bendigo Braves (21) defeated by Sandringham Sabres (45)
Jaida Reid (Sandringham) 13
Caitlin Richardson (Bendigo) 10


Pool 1F:

In the final group, the two standout sides have emerged, setting up a virtual grand final tonight. Nunawading Spectres and Ballarat Rush both side undefeated from two games after notching up another couple of wins. In the tighter game, the Spectres won by four points over a gallant Ringwood Hawks, while the Rush had a much easier time, accounting for Southern Peninsula Sharks, 66-27 with Georgia Cox‘s 17 points the standout game.

Ringwood Hawks (40) defeated by Nunawading Spectres (44)
Olivia Morris (Nunawading) 10
Katrina Warton (Ringwood) 16

Ballarat Rush (66) defeated Southern Peninsula Sharks (27)
Georgia Cox (Ballarat) 17
Rosie Todd (Ballarat) 14
Rebecca Rylance (Southern Peninsula) 9

VJBL U18 Grading Phase Pool 1 wrap: Round 1

THE Victorian Junior Basketball League (VJBL) got underway last week and we recap all the results from the top Pool in the Under 18s Boys and Girls competitions. The second round is completed tonight, with a third and final round robin stage to be done next Friday night to determine which six teams in each grade automatically qualify for the VJBL Championship division.



In Pool 1A, Emmanwiel Deng was the difference between Whittlesea Pacers and Wyndham Basketball, as Deng put up 22 points – 10 more than anyone else on the court – for the Pacers during a narrow seven-point win. In the other match, Melbourne Tigers proved too strong for Waverley Falcons, with three players hitting double-figures, led by Kobe Shewry (15).

Whittlesea Pacers (49) defeated Wyndham Basketball (42)
Emmanwiel Deng (Whittlesea) 22
Jack Tatter (Wyndham) 12
Callum Stojanovic (Wyndham) 10

Melbourne Tigers (47) defeated Waverley Falcons (36)
Kobe Shewry (Melbourne) 15
Ihsaan Bongso (Melbourne) 13
Kai Garnaut (Melbourne) 11
Harvey Moore (Waverley) 12
Matthew Jefferson (Waverley) 10


In the highest score of the entire round for the Under 18 Boys competition, Eltham Wildcats put Dandenong Rangers’ second side to the sword throughout a 29-point blitz. Led by Riley Lewis (17 points), the Wildcats easily got the points over the Rangers, winning 68-29. In the other game, it was a lot closer with just 12 points separating the teams, though Nunawading Spectres won 60-48 off a round-high individual effort of 25 points thanks to Tristan Devers.

Nunawading Spectres (60) defeated Hawthorn Magic (48)
Tristan Devers (Nunawading) 25
Jarryd Remy (Hawthorn) 9

Eltham Wildcats (68) defeated Dandenong Rangers 2 (39)
Riley Lewis (Eltham) 17
Bradley Moorey (Eltham) 11
Harrison Stones (Eltham) 10
Jak Morris-Burney (Dandenong) 9


Diamond Valley Eagles claimed an early win in the Pool stage thanks to a narrow five-point triumph over Craigieburn Eagles. Marley Lambert (15 points) led the way for the winners, though James Bonnici scored half of Craigieburn’s points with a 23-point effort. In the other match, Bulleen Boomers easily accounted for Casey Cavaliers by 19 points in what was a real shared team win.

Bulleen Boomers (51) defeated Casey Cavaliers (32)
Marcel Haj (Bulleen) 11
Ky Taylor (Casey) 9

Diamond Valley Eagles (52) defeated Craigieburn Eagles (47)
Marley Lambert (Diamond Valley) 15
Isaac Callaghan (Diamond Valley) 10
James Bonnici (Craigieburn) 23
Steven Pestrucci (Craigieburn) 12

Pool 1D:

The highly anticipated match of the round did not disappoint in Pool 1D, with Kilsyth Cobras escaping with the points against an equally-talented Dandenong Rangers outfit. Rhys Crossley and Harrison Adams both put up 15 points in equal match-high efforts during the 55-49 victory. An understrength Frankston Blues team won by a point against Pakenham Warriors, getting the victory courtesy of a low-scoring 36-35 win.

Kilsyth Cobras (55) defeated Dandenong Rangers (49)
Rhys Crossley (Kilsyth) 15
Harrison Adams (Kilsyth) 15
Wyatt Stewart (Kilsyth) 12
Coby Burgiel (Dandenong) 13

Frankston Blues (36) defeated Pakenham Warriors (35)
Liam Atkinson (Frankston) 8
Lauchlan Mark (Pakenham) 10

Pool 1E:

In another couple of high-scoring wins, Bendigo Braves obliterated Eltham Wildcats’ second side, getting up 61-25 in an impressive showing. Jacob Nihill led the scoring with 11 in a real team effort, whilst in the other game, McKinnon Cougars – led by Nathan Scollo‘s 19 points – were too strong for Southern Peninsula Sharks. Despite Corey Hastings‘ game-high 20 points for the Sharks, they went down by 13 points.

Bendigo Braves (61) defeated Eltham Wildcats 2 (25)
Jacob Nihill (Bendigo) 11
Malik Gordon (Bendigo) 10
Felix Bell (Eltham 2) 8

McKinnon Cougars (60) defeated Southern Peninsula Sharks (47)
Nathan Scollo (McKinnon) 19
Denver Lund (McKinnon) 14
Luke Lyngberg (McKinnon) 13
Corey Hastings (Southern Peninsula) 20
Tarrant Wallace (Southern Peninsula) 10

Pool 1F:

In what could be considered a ‘Group of Death’, three of the four sides are genuine automatic promotion chances. In the tight game, Geelong United won by seven points over Knox Raiders as Olivier Northam (19 points) top scored, though Bailey Nunn (16) put in a great effort for the Raiders. Keilor Thunder also flexed their muscles with a big win over Sunbury Jets, as Cooper Colson (12 points) was the top scorer in that match.

Keilor Thunder (65) defeated Sunbury Jets (31)
Cooper Colson (Keilor) 12
Brodie McWhinney (Keilor) 10
Nikolas Ellul (Keilor) 10
Angus McSwiggan (Sunbury) 10

Geelong United (61) defeated Knox Raiders (54)
Olivier Northam (Geelong) 19
Nicholas Hough (Geelong) 12
Bailey Nunn (Knox) 16
Jordan Anderson (Knox) 15


Pool 1A:

In an all-Dandenong Rangers clash in Pool 1A, things went as one would expect with the first side easily accounting for the second side. Nyadiew Puoch was far too strong, nailing 20 points in a massive 67-32 effort, whilst in the other game, Waverley Falcons claimed a 20-point win over Frankston Blues thanks to Jasmine Connell and Liana Kinkela sharing in 11 points apiece.

Waverley Falcons (42) defeated Frankston Blues (22)
Jasmine Connell (Waverley) 11
Liana Kinkela (Waverley) 11
Elle Schonfelder (Frankston) 6

Dandenong Rangers 1 (67) defeated Dandenong Rangers 2 (32)
Nyadiew Puoch (Dandenong 1) 20
Dallas Loughridge (Dandenong 1) 11
Tahlia Soukup (Dandenong 2) 8

Pool 1B:

In Pool 1B, it was McKinnon Cougars and Keilor Thunder that took away the points on opening night. The Cougars won narrowly over Sunbury Jets, 46-38, as Romy Price put up 15 points for the Cougars, one less than Sunbury’s Maddison Ford (16). The Thunder won 51-30 over Kilsyth Cobras in a comfortable victory, as Tess Heal and Jaz Salon finished with 13 points apiece.

McKinnon Cougars (46) defeated Sunbury Jets (38)
Romy Price (McKinnon) 15
Hannah McGillen (McKinnon) 10
Maddison Ford (Sunbury) 16

Keilor Thunder (51) defeated Kilsyth Cobras (30)
Tess Heal (Keilor) 13
Jaz Salon (Keilor) 13
Gemma Hancock (Kilsyth) 11

Pool 1C:

Knox Raiders and Bulleen Boomers showed themselves to be the clear top two sides in Pool 1C, with Bulleen the most likely to top the group. Tabitha Betson (14 points) was one of three Boomers to hit double-figure points in the 30-point win over Bellarine Storm, whilst Gemma O’Donnell shot 19 in Knox Raiders’ 48-23 triumph over Melbourne Tigers’ second side.

Knox Raiders (48) defeated Melbourne Tigers 2 (23)
Gemma O’Donnell (Knox) 19
Lotus Billington (Melbourne 2) 7

Bulleen Boomers (57) defeated Bellarine Storm (27)
Tabitha Betson (Bulleen) 14
Emily Maltezos (Bulleen) 13
Rebecca Horvat (Bulleen) 10
Aimee Wookey (Bellarine) 7
Alivia Osborne (Bellarine) 7

Pool 1D:

Hawthorn Magic and Diamond Valley Eagles both ran out to solid wins in their respective Pool 1D clashes to start off on the right note. The Eagles defeated Casey Cavaliers 45-32 despite no Eagles’ player scoring double-figure points while Casey’s Dakota Crichton finished with 15 points. In the other match, the Magic were too good for Eltham Wildcats, running out 15-point winners.

Hawthorn Magic 41 defeated Eltham Wildcats 26

Diamond Valley Eagles 45 defeated Casey Cavaliers 32
Genevieve Broadbent (Diamond Valley) 9
Hayley Sparks (Diamond Valley) 9
Dakota Crichton (Casey) 15

Pool 1E:

Bendigo Braves managed to secure a nail-biting one-point win in Pool 1E, defeating Altona Gators 39-38. Caitlin Richardson (14 points) was the top scorer in that match for the Braves, while Cassie Dodemaide put up 11 for the Gators. Melbourne Tigers won the other match in the Pool, accounting for Sandringham Sabres by 12 points.

Bendigo Braves 39 defeated Altona Gators 38
Caitlin Richardson (Bendigo) 14
Phoebe Radford (Bendigo) 10
Cassie Dodemaide (Altona) 11

Melbourne Tigers 33 defeated Sandringham Sabres 21

Pool 1F:

Two one-sided contests in Pool 1F marked a couple of contenders, as Nunawading Spectres showed no mercy on defence against Southern Peninsula Sharks. Only conceding 11 points to the Sharks, the Spectres had a real team contribution on their way to 54 points, with Olivia Morris finishing with 12 in the 43-point triumph. Meanwhile Milly Simpson (13 points) led a Ballarat Rush outfit to a 22-point win over Ringwood Hawks.

Nunawading Spectres 54 defeated Southern Peninsula Sharks 11
Olivia Morris (Nunawading) 12
Ruby Deeprose (Southern Peninsula) 3

Ballarat Rush 47 defeated Ringwood Hawks 25
Milly Simpson (Ballarat) 13
Rosie Todd (Ringwood) 11

Picture: Dandenong Rangers Facebook

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC preview: Qualifying and Elimination Finals

A HUGE night of finals action takes place in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-16 Girls Championship Division tonight with red-hot favourites Dandenong taking on the only side to find a chink in its armour, while do-or-die clashes include a rematch from last round.

Dandenong Rangers (1st, 17-1) vs. Keilor Thunder (4th, 13-5)

The top-of-the-table Dandenong Rangers look to make it 13 consecutive wins when they host Keilor Thunder at Hawthorn tonight. In their last clash, the Rangers won on the road by 16 points, 53-37 reversing the result from the earlier game between the sides back in May. In that match, Keilor broke history being the only side to defeat the Rangers, winning 40-33 on the road in a memorable match. Good luck to Keilor trying to stop the machine that ended the regular season with 154.1 per cent which included the best offence and best defence in the competition. Dandenong is also yet to lose on the road with 10 wins from 10 games, while the Thunder are not too far behind with seven wins from nine games. This game pits the top three shooters against each other with Dandenong duo Dallas Loughridge (13.5 points per game) and Nyadiew Puoch (13.4) going up against Tess Heal (17.9) who will be crucial to Keilor’s victory, along with Jaz Salon (10.7) and Bella Peterson (10.9). Dandenong’s Myah Healey (10.1) is the other scorer in the game averaging more than 10 points per match.

Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 13-3-2) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (3rd, 14-4)

These sides have just played the once, and it went down to the wire, with Bulleen getting up 44-41 at home. It was the difference in the end with these sides finishing on the same amount of points, though the Eagles had the extra win to their name. The Boomers had one less loss, and two draws to level the proceedings, though the Eagles finished the season with a massive percentage of 135.1 per cent. Bulleen was fairly healthy itself with 123.5 per cent, and had no fear on the road with six wins and a draw from nine matches. Diamond Valley also just had the two losses, recording seven wins. Both these sides can rack up big numbers with Emily Maltezos (9.1 points per game) one of three players in the top 20 for the Boomers, while Eleanor Bollands (10.1) leads the way for Diamond Valley.

Sandringham Sabres (5th, 11-6-1) vs. Melbourne Tigers (8th, 8-10)

While it is not a home ground advantage, the Sabres do not have to travel to far when they play Melbourne Tigers in a do-or-die elimination final at GESAC in East Bentleigh. They have accounted for the Tigers on both previous meetings, getting up by 17 points in May and then 14 points in June, but have not played for more than two months. The Sabres finished seven points clear of their eighth placed opponents and won five and drew one of eight games on the road, while Melbourne finished with four wins from nine games both home and away. Sandringham heads into the game as strong favourites, but anything can happen in finals. Hannah Wickstrom averages the second most points of any player in the competition, with the Sabres’ shooter banking 14.1 points per game, while Jemima O’Toole has 9.6. Melbourne has just one scorer in the top 20, with Leila Davis (10.3 points per game) the main avenue to points.

Nunawading Spectres (6th, 10-8) vs. Ballarat Rush (7th, 10-8)

In the final game of the round, Nunawading Spectres face Ballarat Rush, and you only have to look to last week for when the Spectres got up by 12 points over the Rush in a 61-49 victory at home. They have traditionally been better on the road with seven victories from nine outings, while the Rush have split their 10 games, 5-5. It was the two sides only clash for the year, and now there is no turning back in the elimination final held at Keilor. Evelyn Curtis (10.9 points per game) and Olivia Morris (10.0) are the two key scorers for the Spectres, while Milly Simpson (11.3) and Georgia Cox (10.3) average double-figure points for the Rush.

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC preview: Round 9

WITH a round to play in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL), there are still two teams fighting out for one finals place, and a home final on the line for two of the sides.

Hawthorn Magic (13th, 7-9-1) vs. Keilor Thunder (4th, 12-5)

On face value the Magic will need every bit of their moniker to get up over the fourth placed Keilor Thunder who cannot be moved from their spot. After dropping a game they had in their keeping against Sandringham Sabres last round, the Thunder will be keen to bounce back with a victory heading into finals. Make no mistake, if Hawthorn lose, then the finals are set and the Magic will finish ninth. For Keilor, they will be facing Dandenong Rangers regardless in the first week of finals. Tess Heal leads all-comers in the point-scoring stakes with 17.0 points per game, just ahead of Ally Marshall with 13.3 points per game, and ranked second in overall points.

Dandenong Rangers (1st, 16-1) vs. Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 13-2-2)

Both these teams are keen to get a win for for a mental advantage in the finals with the teams likely to face off at some stage, the Boomers still need to win to secure a top two spot and home final. The Rangers have the minor premiership in their grasp, but would like to add another win to the 11-game winning streak. If the Boomers lose and the Diamond Valley Eagles win, the Boomers remain in second spot due to the head-to-head victory over the Eagles. The Rangers have a trio of stars who can cause damage to the opposition with Nyadiew Puoch (13.3 points per game), Dallas Loughridge (12.6) and Myah Healey (11.0) all inside the top 10, while Bulleen relies on a more even spread led by Emily Maltezos (9.4).

Melbourne Tigers (11th, 8-9) vs. Diamond Valley Eagles (3rd, 13-4)

In what looms as a must-win for Melbourne, they have to knock off top four side Diamond Valley to guarantee a spot in the finals series. If Hawthorn upstages Keilor, then the Tigers could drop outside the top eight with a loss. Meanwhile the Eagles cannot drop from third with a superior head-to-head points advantage (and percentage) ahead of fourth placed Keilor, and will prepare to play Bulleen in the first round of finals. Eleanor Bollands has been the top scorer for Diamond Valley Eagles with 10.7 points per game, while for the Tigers, Amy Kurkowski has slotted 12.4 points per game.

Nunawading Spectres (8th, 9-8) vs. Ballarat Rush (6th, 10-7)

Nunawading has the opportunity to snatch a home final with victory over Ballarat Rush, with the sides likely to meet again the following week in the elimination final. Providing Sandringham Sabres gets the job done against the lowly Knox Raiders, these sides will meet two weeks in a row, though with a home record of 2-6 and an away record of 7-2, it might be thought the Spectres might relish travelling, though the mental advantage of a win would be of huge benefit going into the finals. Evelyn Curtis (10.3 points per game) and Olivia Morris (10.2) are the dominant scoring duo for the Spectres this season, while for Ballarat, Milly Simpson (10.7) and Georgia Cox (9.8) are both in the top 20.

Sandringham Sabres (5th, 10-6-1) vs. Knox Raiders (15th, 5-10-2)

In the final game of the round, the Sandringham Sabres just have to knock off the cellar dwelling Knox Raiders to ensure a fifth placed finish and elimination final against either Melbourne or Hawthorn. The Sabres are only a point ahead of Ballarat Rush so cannot afford to drop the game, though they will still host Nunawading in the elimination final, but then potentially meet one of the Boomers or Eagles in the semi-finals. Sandringham’s Hannah Wickstrom averages 13.5 points per game to be second overall on average, while Jaida Reid‘s 9.4 points per game sees her equal twentieth.

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC preview: Round 8

THE top four and top eight are all but set barring disaster for the teams in fourth and eighth, but stranger things have happened in sport and all eyes are on the penultimate round of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-16 Girls Championship Division.

Diamond Valley Eagles (3rd, 12-4) vs. Knox Raiders (15th, 5-9-2)

Knox Raiders are already out of finals contention barring a complete miracle that sees Melbourne drop both games and the Raiders pick up two wins. They have a tough ask up against third placed Diamond Valley Eagles who are very keen to try and grab back a top two spot and play a home final. They must take care of business here and officially rule the Raiders out of the finals race. With a 6-2 record at home, the Eagles are more than comfortable there, while the Raiders are three wins and a draw from eight games on the road. Eleanor Bollands leads the way for Diamond Valley with 11.0 points per game, while Jaida Reid is the highest Knox Raiders’ scorer with 8.2.

Melbourne Tigers (10th, 8-8) vs. Bulleen Boomers (2nd, 12-2-2)

Melbourne Tigers hold the coveted eighth spot on the table in terms of Championship Division sides, but they must pick up at least one win to secure their spot in the finals series. They have one of the toughest challenges this round in Bulleen, with the Boomers out of the running for top spot, but need to keep winning to ensure they maintain second spot – and a home final – given Diamond Valley is just two points behind with a much superior percentage. The Tigers are four wins from seven games at home, while the Boomers have five wins and a draw from seven matches away. The Tigers rely on Amy Kurkowski (12.4 points) and Leila Davis (11.0) as their top scorers, while the Boomers have a mix of shooters including Tabitha Betson (9.7) and Ella McIntyre (9.3).

Dandenong Rangers (1st, 15-1) vs. Ballarat Rush (5th, 10-6)

Dandenong Rangers have a couple of dead rubbers to finish the season, easily 30 per cent clear of second placed Bulleen, even if they dropped both games. They could officially rule out the Rush from making top four with a win here, although given the rush need to recover almost 15 per cent on fourth placed Keilor Thunder in the final two rounds – as well as win both and need the Thunder to lose both – it is a tough ask even without the rough fixture. The Rangers dropped their only game at home in six appearances, while the Rush have five wins from eight games both home and a away. Dandenong Rangers have the biggest spread of shooters up the top-end, as Dallas Loughridge (12.8 points per game), Nyadiew Puoch (12.7) and Myah Healey (12.0) all rank inside the top 10 shooters. For the Rush, Georgia Cox is the dominant scorer with 11.2 points per game just ahead of Milly Simpson (10.6).

Sandringham Sabres (6th, 9-6-1) vs. Keilor Thunder (4th, 12-4)

In arguably the game of the round, fourth placed Keilor Thunder can officially rule out any mathematical chance of missing top four. Better still, they are still in the hunt for second with Bulleen and Diamond Valley both within two points, although percentage is the big difference. The Sabres currently have a home final lined up, but with back-to-back losses and Nunawading having the easier fixture this round, they could drop to seventh and take their fate out of their own hands in the final round. Keilor is strong on the road too with six wins from seven games, while Sandringham have a 50 per cent win-loss ratio at home. Hannah Wickstrom leads the way when it comes to points scorers for the Sabres with 13.4 – ranked second overall, while the only player ahead of her is Tess Heal (Keilor) who has sank a massive 17.7 points per game, while Jaz Salon (12.0) has also been prolific.

Nunawading Spectres (7th, 9-7) vs. Hawthorn Magic (14th, 6-9-1)

In the final game of the round, Nunawading Spectres should be able to take care of Hawthorn Magic, though the Magic still have a mathematical chance of making finals if the Tigers drop both and the Magic can pick up two wins. Taking it one week at a time, the Spectres will be no easy beats, though a 2-5 record a home does not inspire terrific confidence for the home side, especially when the Magic have split their road trips with four wins from eight games. Evie Curtis averages 10.6 points per game for the Spectres, while Olivia Morris is just behind with 10.4, while for the Magic, Amy Ohara has an average of 10.7.

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC preview: Round 7

WITH only three rounds remaining in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-16 Girls Championship Division, the Dandenong Rangers look sure to secure a home final and second chance. They face the Sandringham Sabres at home this week, with the Sabres pressing the top-four. The Nunawading Spectres sit similarly in sixth against the Diamond Valley Eagles this week, only two wins below second.

Dandenong Rangers (1st, 14-1) vs Sandringham Sabres (5th, 9-5-1)

The Dandenong Rangers hope to record their 10th consecutive win this week when they come up against the Sandringham Sabres at home. Last week, the Rangers dominated the bottom-end Raiders in a 27-67 match-up – remaining strong on defence to keep Knox under 10 points in each term. This season, the Rangers have had just 592 points scored against them, compared to 911 for. The Sabres season has been fair despite falling short twice in the last fortnight, with a draw to Sandringham (47-47) and loss to Ballarat (60-44). They put their 5-1-1 away record to the test this week when they face the league’s best. Dallas Loughridge has remained in top form for the Rangers with 14.2 points per game (PPG) in third spot for league-average. She’s followed close by Nyadiew Puoch in eighth – averaging 11.6 from five games. Hannah Wickstrom (13.8), Summer Keating (10) and Jemima O’Toole (9.8) have been strong for Sandringham all season in fourth, 17th and 18th respectively.

Nunawading Spectres (6th, 9-6) vs Diamond Valley Eagles (2nd, 11-4)

In a similarly tough match-up, the Nunawading Spectres host the Diamond Valley Eagles. A win could mean a top-four chance for Nunawading or a home final for Diamond Valley. Last week, the Spectres fell short to the fourth-placed Keilor Thunder – losing touch in the final term (20-2) despite leading all game. Similarly, Diamond Valley lost last week to a top-four contender in Bulleen (44-41). The defeat drops them out of touch with the Rangers as Bulleen and Keilor press in third and fourth. Both teams need a lift this week, with Nunawading hoping Evelyn Curtis (10.5) and Olivia Morris (10.4) can continue their form into the clash. Despite the loss, Curtis held up well without Morris in last week’s loss – recording 17. For the Eagles, Eleanor Bollands has been impressive with 11.4 average from five outings, alongside Aeska Ratnayake with 9.7.

Melbourne Tigers (8th, 8-7) vs Ballarat Rush (7th, 9-6)

In the final top-eight clash of the round, we have the Melbourne Tigers hosting the Ballarat Rush. Last week, Melbourne did well to rebound from their 53-50 loss against Nunawading, earning a significant win against Hawthorn (51-55). Ballarat fared similarly, after losing 44-58 to Diamond Valley, responded against an in-form Sandringham at home (60-44). With finals approaching, it’s important for both sides to build momentum. Melbourne will look to Amy Kurkowski to continue her form – sitting second in PPG across the league with 14.3, with Leila Davis following in seventh with 12.4. On the board, Ballarat lack the same scoring utilities. Milly Simpson leads for her side with 11.3 PPG from four outings but has nobody else lifting into the top-end. A few players will need to lift if Ballarat hope to compete.

Knox Raiders (15th, 5-8-2) vs Keilor Thunder (4th, 11-4)

The Knox Raiders host the in-form Keilor Thunder this week in what might be their last chance of making finals. Though unlikely, the Raiders still sit as a mathematical chance to break into the eight but need a lot of teams to drop in the coming rounds. Though with the top-four on the line, it’s unlikely the Thunder will fall. Last week, Keilor returned to the winner’s list with a 55-42 victory over Nunawading. The visitors currently boast three players in the top-20 for average points in Tess Heal (17.3), Jaz Salon (12.8) and Bella Peterson (9.8). Last week, Heal and Salon tore up the floor with 15 and 25 points respectively as Heal remains atop the scoring table. For the Raiders, not a single player ranks inside the top-20, with Jaida Reid (9.2) and Gemma O’Donnell (7.8) leading on the scoreboard.

Hawthorn Magic (13th, 6-8-1) vs Bulleen Boomers (3rd, 11-2-2)

The result of Hawthorn’s match-up with Bulleen could determine whether or not they play finals. With two wins keeping them outside the eight, the Magic need to bring something special if they intend to knock off one of league’s giants. As it stands, Bulleen sit in third on percentage – tied with Diamond Valley (2nd) and Keilor Thunder (4th). Last week, they returned to the winner’s list with a tight 44-41 win over the Diamond Valley Eagles, after tying the week before against the Knox Raiders. Given these teams’ positions, Bulleen should have won both by fair margins. It’s this form dip that may see Hawthorn into a finals campaign. The Magic’s top scorers, Ally Marshall (13.5) and Amy Ohara (11), will be Bulleen’s biggest threats. The pair sit in fifth and 12th across the league, while Bulleen’s, Tabitha Betson (10.8) and Ella McIntyre (10) hold in 13th and 16th respectively.

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC preview: Round 6

ROUND 6 of the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-16 Girls Championship Division looks set to be a tight one with six teams in the top-eight facing with a max of two spots separating them in the standings. The Bulleen Boomers look to host the game of the round this week when they face Diamond Valley Eagles at home. The contest between Keilor Thunder and the Nunawading Spectres also looks to impress alongside another significant match-up between the Ballarat Rush and Sandringham Sabres.

Bulleen Boomers (3rd, 10-2-2) vs Diamond Valley Eagles (2nd, 11-3)

The match of the round kicks off this week between the Bulleen Boomers and the Diamond Valley Eagles at Mullum Mullum. Last week Bulleen fell short in a rare draw against the fourteenth placed Raiders on the road – a match-up most of the league saw them winning. Diamond Valley pulled up well in their contest against Ballarat, consolidating themselves in second as they chase for the number one spot. On the road, the Eagles have been in-form, collecting just the one loss from six outings. Similarly, Bulleen’s record at home has also been one of best at home, recording six wins, one loss and a draw over the season. Tabitha Betson has been a huge contributor to Bulleen’s recent success, recording 12.5 points per game (PPG) from four outings in the Championship Division. The Bulleen star currently boasts seventh spot for league scoring, while teammate, Ella McIntyre, holds strong in 16th spot with 10 PPG. For Diamond Valley, Eleanor Bollands has been immense with 13.8 PPG, sitting in fourth across the league. Aeska Ratnayake has also been a solid performer across her three games, sitting in nineteenth with 9.7 PPG.

Keilor Thunder (4th, 10-4) vs Nunawading Spectres (6th, 9-5)

The tight match-ups continue with the Keilor Thunder hosting the Nunawading Spectres. Since joining the Championship Division, the Thunder have won three of their five outings which include wins against top-four rivals, Bulleen and Diamond Valley. Though in Round 5, Keilor received a slight reality check then they copped a fair loss against league-leaders, Dandenong, at home. This week they face Nunawading, who have picked up consecutive wins since returning from the break. With what they have shown thus far, both teams are definitely deserving of the top-four. Though against a 7-1 away record, it seems unlikely that Keilor will be the ones to climb this week. Keilor currently boast the top league scorer in Tess Heal who’s been averaging 17.8 PPG from five appearances, while Jaz Salon and Bella Peterson also holds spot in the top-20 with 10.4 and 10.3 PPG respectively. Though despite their efforts, the Spectres only hold one player on the list with Olivia Morris averaging 10.4 PPG. Madison Sinclair (9.2) and Evelyn Curtis (9.2) have also been in fair form, sitting twenty-second and twenty-third across the league.

Ballarat Rush (7th, 8-6) vs Sandringham Sabres (5th, 9-4-1)

The Ballarat Rush hope to re-join the winner’s list this week as they come up against the Sandringham Sabres at home. The Rush have suffered consecutive losses since returning from the break, falling to quality opposition in Bulleen and Diamond Valley. While not as high in the standings, the Sabres aim to pose a similar threat as they themselves push for a top-four spot. In the first two rounds of the Championship Division, the Sabres managed wins over Melbourne and Bulleen. Though since then have not snared a win. A win matters plenty for both sides as plenty opposition push for their positions on the tables. Milly Simpson leads scoring for Ballarat with 11.3 PPG in twelfth for league-scoring. However, unlike Sandringham, Ballarat do not have another player in the top 20 with Rosie Todd just missing the cut in 21st with 9.3 PPG. The Sabres boast several scoring utilities with Hannah Wickstrom picking up 13.8 PPG in third, alongside Summer Keating (10) and Jemima O’Toole (9.8) rounding out the top 20 in seventeenth and eighteenth spot.

Hawthorn Magic (13th, 6-7-1) vs Melbourne Tigers (8th, 7-7)

Two more sides hope to return to the winners list this week as the Hawthorn Magic face the Melbourne Tigers at home. Last week, the Magic caused a major upset against the Sandringham Sabres in a 47-47 tie. Though Hawthorn’s record at home has been a talking point this season, collecting just the two wins from six appearances. Similarly, the Melbourne Tigers have struggled away, having recorded three wins from eight games – though came close to upsetting the Nunawading Spectres in Round 5. For Hawthorn, Ally Marshall has been in top form with 14.2 PPG in second spot for league scoring, alongside Amy Ohara who sits 11th for league scoring with 11.8. Leila Davis has been a tough utility for the Tigers in the new division, sitting sixth with 13 PPG with Amy Kurkowski following close on 12 from her three appearances.

Knox Raiders (14th, 5-7-2) vs Dandenong Rangers (1st, 13-1)

Sitting two wins ahead of the rest of the competition, the Dandenong Rangers look ready to increase their lead when they face the Knox Raiders on the road. The Raiders remain undefeated in the Championship Division with eight consecutive wins and an undefeated record on the road (9-0-0). Comparatively, the Raiders do not match up, holding neither a preference for home (2-3-1) or away (3-4-1) with poor records for both. The Raiders did manage a rare draw against Bulleen last week to upset the standings, but it’s unlikely that Dandenong will suffer similarly. Jaida Reid only just makes up the top-20 for league scoring in 20th with 9.3 PPG. Gemma O’Donnell follows next with 8.8 from four outings. For the Rangers, Dallas Loughridge leads scoring in fifth spot with 13 PPG, followed by Nyadiew Puoch eighth with 12.5 and Myah Healey in ninth with 12.

MUVJBL U16 Girls VC review: Round 5 – Two draws shake up the standings

DANDENONG Rangers moved to eight consecutive wins in the Melbourne United Victorian Junior Basketball League (MUVJBL) Under-16 Girls Championship Division with a victory on the road against Keilor Thunder. The result puts the Rangers three wins ahead of their direct competitors in Diamond Valley, Bullen and Keilor – retaining top spot. Thankfully for Keilor, most of the teams around them also suffered unfavourable results. For the game, Dallas Loughridge (12 points), Grace Montgomery (11) and Abby-Lee Wood (11) all dominated the floor for the Rangers. Loughridge moved to eighth spot for league scoring following the result, as Keilor’s, Tess Heal, maintains dominance in top spot with a 13-point performance. Jaz Salon assisted well in the loss, recording eight points of her own.

Nunawading Spectres were one of three teams to record a win within the top eight in Round 5, after they defeated Melbourne Tigers by three points (53-50) at home. The Spectres capitalised off the poor showings from their counterparts and moved to sixth with just two wins separating them from second. The Tigers slipped to eighth place after losing touch with the Spectres in their final term (16-9). For the game, Olivia Morris and Madison Sinclair were standout, amassing 14 points each in the tight win. On Melbourne’s end, Leila Davis was immense alongside Amy Kurkowski, scoring 17 and 14 points respectively. Davis’ efforts move her to seventh spot for league-scoring.

In the first of two tied games in Round 5, the Hawthorn Magic break even against Sandringham Sabres. At the beginning of the round, the Sabres were strong favourites, sitting six positions higher than their struggling opponents. However, the Sabres came ready to upset the balance, forcing the Sabres to play catch-up with an eight-point lead heading into the final term. Amy Ohara impressed at the board for the home side, collecting 15 points to move into eleventh spot league scoring. Jacqueline Gomes supported well with nine, similar to Sandringham’s Maya Dear (9) who assisted Jemima O’Toole well on the scoreboard (11). O’Toole’s performance moves her to eighteenth spot for league scoring with a 9.7 average.

Knox Raiders and Bulleen Boomers recorded the round’s second tie game following their 45-45 result at Knox Basketball Stadium. As with the last, Bulleen were obvious favourites entering the round – sitting in third compared with the Raiders’ fourteenth. Though in the contest, the Raiders were determined to seal the first half – leading 26-22 into the break. The pressure continued when they extended their lead by four points in the third, leaving the Boomers to drop 19-11 to close the deficit. Jaida Reid was big in the match-up, sinking 14 points alongside Paige Burrows and Kaitlyn Scott who dropped 11 and 10 respectively. For the Boomers, Tabitha Betson led on the scoreboard with 16 points to move to seventh spot for league scoring. Emily Maltezos followed next with nine points.

Meanwhile in the final game with individual scores yet to be confirmed, Diamond Valley Eagles got up against Ballarat Rush, 58-44. The win was an important one for Diamond Valley, keeping within two games of top spot, whilst grabbing second spot thanks to Bulleen’s draw and Keilor’s loss.

In the reserve grade, Ringwood Hawks fell 35-62 against Kilsyth Cobras, Bendigo Braves copped a 54-61 loss at home to Waverley Falcons and Southern Peninsula Sharks snared a tight 59-55 win over the Altona Gators. The round continued with a Bellarine Storm 38-43 loss to Sunbury Jets, and Eltham Wildcats snared a 55-53 victory over Frankston Blues.

In the Championship Division for Round 6, the Ballarat Rush host the Sandringham Sabres, the Hawthorn Magic faces the Melbourne Tigers and the Keilor Thunder come up against the Nunawading Spectres. As the night continues, the Knox Raiders will challenge the Dandenong Rangers at home and the Bulleen Boomers will host the Diamond Valley Eagles at Mullum Mullum.