VJBL U16 Grading Phase Pool 1 wrap: Round 1

IT was a big opening round of action for the Victorian Junior Basketball League as both the boys and girls kicked off their respective seasons in style. There were some big wins that headlined the round along with a number of close calls showcasing just how tight this season of basketball is going to be after a year long hiatus due to a COVID-19 enforced break. Whilst many of the teams competed in the Eltham Dandenong tournament, there was no shortage of basketball over the past week with the Friday night showcase.

U16 BOYS:

Pool A:

If there was one team that looked the goods this round it was an impressive Hawthorn Magic outfit that comfortably outscored all its rivals in a big opening round win. The Magic piled on 55 points to win by 19 over Frankston Blues. Phoenix Windsor led the way with 21 points, which was only just short of the two other teams in the other match, which saw Coburg Giants win in a low-scoring two-point thriller over Bulleen Boomers, 28-26.

Coburg Giants (28) defeated Bulleen Boomers (26)
Saul Beckford Saunders (Coburg) 9
Zac McGown (Bulleen) 10

Hawthorn Magic (55) defeated Frankston Blues (36)
Phoenix Windsor (Hawthorn) 21
Jesse McIntosh (Hawthorn) 12
Heath Tenner (Frankston) 8
Olier Dignan (Frankston) 8

Pool B:

Hawthorn Magic and Sandringham Sabres emerged victorious in their respective Pool B conferences, with the Magic getting up in a 23-point victory over Altona Gators as the big win of the group. Louis Emmett led the way with 12 points, whilst in the other match Sandringham Sabres proved too good for Kilsyth Cobras in an impressive six-point victory to start off the group stage perfectly.

Hawthorn Magic (62) defeated Altona Gators (39)
Louis Emmett (Hawthorn) 12
Jesse Jewell (Hawthorn) 10
John Hargrave (Hawthorn) 10
Anthony Le (Hawthorn) 10
Oliver Galea (Altona) 9
Tyson White (Altona) 9

Sandringham Sabres (43) defeated Kilsyth Cobras (37)
Not listed

Pool C:

Dandenong Rangers started off their group stage with a 10-point win over Latrobe Energy to be the best performed side of the Pool. The Rangers are tipped to secure promotion in the group, and did it well against a strong opponent. Luke Fennell and Jett Garnham combined for 39 points in the win, whilst in the other game, Diamond Valley Eagles easily took care of Craigieburn – who only had the five players – in a comfortable 33-point win.

Dandenong Rangers (61) defeated Latrobe Energy (51)
Luke Fennell (Dandenong) 20
Jett Garnham (Dandenong) 19
Noah Johnston (Latrobe) 14
Ben Waller (Latrobe) 12

Diamond Valley Eagles (53) defeated Craigieburn Eagles (20)
Arman Khangura (Diamond Valley) 10
Tadhg Boyle (Craigieburn) 9

Pool D:

Ballarat Miners strutted their stuff in a high-scoring effort against Nunawading, piling on a group-high score of 62 to record a big win over the Spectres. Nicholas Robinson notched up 20 points in the win, whilst in the other game, Cedric Rault‘s 18 points was the only score in double-digits during a low-scoring 12-point victory to Rault’s Casey Cavaliers against Eltham Wildcats.

Ballarat Miners (62) defeated Nunawading Spectres (42)
Nicholas Robinson (Ballarat) 20
Ned Renfree (Ballarat) 17
Samuel McDonald (Ballarat) 10
Micah Tennent (Nunawading) 15
Harrison Taylor (Nunawading) 11

Casey Cavaliers (48) defeated Eltham Wildcats (36)
Cedric Rault (Casey) 18
Jett Williams (Eltham) 9

Pool E:

In Pool E, both results were fairly one-sided as Melbourne Tigers rolled past Knox Raiders’ second side by 19 points, while Keilor Thunder defeated Geelong United by 17. The Thunder are favoured to top the group, but the Tigers will have something to say about that after an impressive effort. Both team’s leading scorers recorded 17 points with Keilor’s Jai Prince and Melbourne’s Keyaan Bongso achieving that feat.

Keilor Thunder (61) defeated Geelong United (44)
Jai Prince (Keilor) 17
Kristian Tsapatolis (Keilor) 14
Nathan Hargrave (Geelong) 12

Melbourne Tigers (64) defeated Knox Raiders 2 (35)
Keyaan Bongso (Melbourne) 17
Geordan Hitchiner (Melbourne) 13
Mitchell Hansen (Knox) 18

Pool F:

McKinnon flexed its muscles in the sixth pool with a massive win over Pakenham Warriors. The Cougars shared the points around, but were too much for the Warriors who were predominantly led by Joshua Greig (17 points). Kilsyth Cobras’ depth shone true during their second side’s 10-point win over Knox Raiders’ first side. There was not a one-man show, but instead points shared evenly across the side.

McKinnon Cougars (67) defeated Pakenham Warriors (31)
Sebastian Carlos Millares (McKinnon) 13
Jayden Nguyen (McKinnon) 11
Joshua Greig (Pakenham) 17

Kilsyth Cobras 2 (47) defeated Knox Raiders (37)
Liam Westlake (Kilsyth) 11
Cameron West (Kilsyth) 11
Zac Pennell (Kilsyth) 10
Riley White (Knox) 8

U16 girls:

Pool A:

It was a good round for Hawthorn with both sides picking up wins in their respective matches. It was a close contest between Hawthorn 1 and Knox with the Magic doing enough to get over the line and claim an eight-point victory. It was a tight tussle between the two sides but in the end Hawthorn found an added spark with Georgia McBean paving the way with 15 points for her side. On the other hand, Hawthorn 2 made light work of Broadmeadows collecting a 20-point victory. They shared the points scoring duty amongst themselves with Tess Brusnahan leading the pack.

Hawthorn Magic 1 (35) defeated Knox Raiders (27)

Georgia McBean  (Hawthorn) 15
Jada Kennedy (Hawthorn) 8
Zoe Rakogiannis (Knox) 8

Broadmeadows Broncos (19) defeated by Hawthorn Magic 2 (39)

Tess Brusnahan (Hawthorn) 13
Clare Tuckwell (Hawthorn) 7
Rachel Borg Broadmeadows) 6

Pool B:

Round 1 was headlined by big wins to both the Diamond Valley Eagles and Melbourne Tigers side as they notched up sizeable wins in their respective clashes showcasing the ease in which they can hit the scoreboard. Melbourne walked away with a commanding 36 point win as Caitlyn Petersen dominated with a blistering 25 points. The other match saw the Eagles share around the points and race to a 30 point win against Nunawading.

Sandringham Sabres (18) defeated by Melbourne Tigers 1 (54)

Caitlyn Petersent (Melbourne) 25
Natalia Hordejuk (Sandringham) 7
Josie Agnew (Melbourne) 6
Ella Macleod (Melbourne) 6

Nunawading Spectres (18) defeated by Diamond Valley (48)

Ashton Simmons (Diamond Valley) 12
Jessica Boek (Diamond Valley) 7
Codie Warry (Diamond Valley) 7

Pool C:

Eltham 1 prevailed against its second team in a close encounter with the two sides battling hard to claim the win. In the end the game was decided by a mere eight points as a number of key contributors stepped up to the plate for both sides. In fact eight seemed to be the magic number with four players all posting eight points apiece. Casey got the job done against Bulleen securing an 11-point victory at Mullum Mullum Stadium.

Eltham 2 (31) defeated by Eltham 1 (39)

Lucy Christodoulou (Eltham 1) 8
Edith Hamilton (Eltham 2) 8
Claudia Hii (Eltham 1) 8
Molly Stockwell (Eltham 1) 8

Bulleen (26) defeated by Casey (37)

Victoria Meredith (Casey) 9
Kyra Webb (Casey) 7
Alexya Charalambous (Bulleen) 6
Evelyn Connolly (Casey) 6
Hayley Wood (Casey) 6

Pool D:

It was a high scoring round for Latrobe and Kilysth with the two sides hitting the 50 point mark in their individual games. Latrobe kicked off the action for Pool D securing a 41-point win over McKinnon and did so in convincing fashion as Taylah Murtagh led the charge with a game high 14 points. Kilsyth strutted their stuff against Dandenong picking up a 15 point win and getting their season off to a good start. There were strong individual efforts from the Rangers but it was not enough to get them over the line.

Latrobe Energy (58) defeated McKinnon (17)

Taylah Murtagh (Latrobe) 14
Alexandra Beale (Latrobe) 9
Asha Nightingale (Latrobe) 9

Kilsyth (50) defeated Dandenong (35)

Hannah Day (Kilsyth) 16
Taleesha O’Kane (Kilsyth) 14
Dakota Kirikiri (Dandenong) 14

Pool E:

Geelong United kicked off their campaign in style racking up a whopping 54 points and employing a strong defensive effort to stop Wyndham in their tracks. Geelong did not let up throughout the contest and it showed as they managed a 41-point victory. The other game however was much closer with Keilor only just prevailing by a mere five points against Bellarine.

Geelong United (54) defeated Wyndham (13)

Indiana Schwarz (Geelong) 12
Zainab Balogun (Geelong) 6
Keely Burland (Geelong) 6

Bellarine Storm (28) defeated by Keilor Thunder (33)

Ruby Murphy (Keilor) 10
Meg Lucas (Keilor) 8
Shania Soutar (Bellarine) 8

Pool F:

Frankston escaped with a narrow and hard fought victory in the opening game of the season downing Nunawading by four points in the first game for Pool F. The intensity was high from both teams as they pushed to kickstart their season in style. Collingwood also secured a win edging out Ballarat by six points in the next clash with Georgia Bodey impressing despite being in the losing side.

Nunawading Spectres (41) defeated by Frankston Blues (45)

Shaylea Kerr (Frankston) 14
Katie Harrington (Nunawading) 12
Elli Symonds (Frankston) 12

Collingwood (31) defeated Ballarat (25)

Georgia Bodey (Ballarat) 11
Keira Lindemans (Collingwood) 10
Rosie O’Loughlin (Collingwood) 6

Picture credit: Keilor Thunder Basketball Facebook

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