THE defending champion Perth Redbacks handed the Stirling Senators a second big loss in six days on Friday night in the Men’s SBL while the Joondalup Wolves remained unbeaten at their new home at HBF Arena.
There were two matches on Friday night to open Round 8 of the 2018 Men’s SBL season with the defending champion Perth Redbacks impressive beating the Stirling Senators 105-84 at Belmont Oasis.
The other game took place at HBF Arena with the Joondalup Wolves continuing to enjoy their new home floor, beating the Kalamunda Eastern Suns 117-83.
The Friday night action in the Men’s SBL got underway at Belmont Oasis with the Redbacks hosting the Senators with both teams entering the contest with identical 6-3 records from the opening seven rounds.
The Redbacks bounced back from their loss last Saturday night to Willetton in impressive fashion with Stirling unable to respond to a 35-point defeat at the hands of Kalamunda.
The Redbacks came out strongly to lead by seven points at quarter-time and then put their foot down in the third quarter with 33 points to 20 to set up the match-winning advantage as they went on to score the 21-point victory.
Ben Smith had a night out for the Redbacks with the championship winning veteran ending the night with 27 points, three rebounds and two steals. He shot 8/15 from the field, 6/11 from three-point territory and 5/5 from the foul line.
Shawn Redhage added 22 points, eight rebounds and five assists too for the Redbacks with Jackson Hussey contributing 18 points, three boards and three steals, Mo Barrow 16 points, four rebounds and four assists, and Joel Wagner seven points, nine assists and five boards.
It was another tough shooting night from deep for the Senators going 5/22 from three-point range at just 22 per cent. Cody Ellis, Justin King, Jay Thwaites and Austin Bruton combined to go 2/15 from beyond the arc.
King still ended up top-scoring for Stirling with 26 points, five rebounds and three assists.
Ash Litterick had a strong performance for the Senators with 21 points and eight rebounds while Ellis contributed 11 points, eight boards and four assists.
The Eastern Suns then made their first venture to HBF Arena to try to hand the Wolves their first loss at their new venue.
Kalamunda was coming off a big win against Stirling last Saturday night, but couldn’t back it up with the league-leading Wolfpack proving too strong and going on to win by 34 points.
Jalen Billups put in a big and economical performance for the Wolves with 24 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocked shots on 8/11 shooting from the field and 7/8 at the foul line.
Chris Clausen had an impressive performance too for Joondalup with 21 points and three rebounds in just 16 minutes while shooting 9/11 from the field and 3/5 from long range.
Trian Iliadis also contributed 14 points and seven assists with Jordan Wellsteed adding 13 points, six rebounds and four assists, Sean Easther 13 points and four steals, and Sam Curtis 11 points.
Logan Viskovich top-scored for the Eastern Suns with 16 points and four rebounds with Kevin Davis finishing with 13 points and seven boards against his former team.
Kerrod Horn added 13 points for the Suns with Cooper Lowe contributing nine points and five rebounds, and Ryan Blanchett eight points and four assists.
WEEK 8 MEN’S SBL FIXTURES
Perth Redbacks 105 defeated Stirling Senators 84
Joondalup Wolves 117 defeated Kalamunda Eastern Suns 83
Goldfields Giants v South West Slammers – Niels Hansen Basketball Stadium 7.30pm
Stirling Senators v Geraldton Buccaneers – Warwick Stadium 7.30pm
Willetton Tigers v Rockingham Flames – Willetton Basketball Stadium 8.00pm
Perry Lakes Hawks v Lakeside Lightning – Bendat Basketball Centre 8.00pm
Mandurah Magic v East Perth Eagles – Mandurah Aquatic and Recreation Centre 8.00pm
Kalamunda Eastern Suns v Cockburn Cougars – Ray Owen Sports Centre 8.30pm
Rockingham Flames v Geraldton Buccaneers – Mike Barnett Sports Complex 12.00pm
Cockburn Cougars v Perry Lakes Hawks – Wally Hagan Stadium 2.00pm