IT might not have had playoff implications but Round 18 in the Men’s SBL concluded on Sunday afternoon with the East Perth Eagles ending its losing slide at four with a 13-point victory over the visiting Goldfields Giants.
It was a relatively tame end to an intense and exciting third last round of the regular season but for the East Perth Eagles, they got to enjoy their ninth win of the campaign on the back of a Drew Williamson masterclass to beat the Goldfields Giants 92-79 at Morley Sport and Recreation Centre.
That brought an end to Round 18 that began back on Friday night with the Perry Lakes Hawks beating the Joondalup Wolves 106-104 in overtime while the Willetton Tigers beat the Mandurah Magic 90-73.
All 14 teams were then in action across seven matches on Saturday starting with two earlier starting matches that saw the Perth Redbacks beat the Rockingham Flames 100-86 and the South West Slammers defeat the Cockburn Cougars 99-80.
The Geraldton Buccaneers then defeated the Stirling Senators 110-98 in overtime and the Perry Lakes Hawks made it 10 on the trot, beating the Goldfields Giants 99-87.
The Kalamunda Eastern Suns then hammered the Mandurah Magic 127-74 with the Willetton Tigers beating the East Perth Eagles 91-78 and the Joondalup Wolves winning a cracker 88-87 against the Lakeside Lightning.
SATURDAY NIGHT MEN’S SBL RECAP – WEEK 18
FRIDAY NIGHT MEN’S SBL RECAP – WEEK 18
MEN’S SBL PREVIEW – WEEK 18
FIELD KEEPS TAKING PRIDE IN BEING HEART AND SOUL OF COUGARS
TRAHAIR SEES BRIGHT FUTURE IF MAGIC GROUP STICKS TOGETHER
REDBACKS AIMING BIG DESPITE THE TARGET AS DEFENDING CHAMPS
SUNDAY MEN’S SBL RECAP – WEEK 17
LIFE FOR WILLIAMSON THRIVING POST-NBL CAREER
PARSONS EXCITED BY HAWKS FUTURE HAVING FOUGHT THROUGH TOUGH TIMES
East Perth and Goldfields turned up at noon on Sunday at Morley Sport and Recreation Centre with both having lost the previous evening, to Willetton and Perry Lakes respectively.
The Eagles only led by six by quarter-time thanks to a Jermaine Malie three-pointer with 30 seconds of the opening period remaining.
But a layup to Aiden Murphy and free throws from Kieran Berry to start the second quarter put East Perth up by 10 which soon grew to 11 when Drew Williamson knocked down a trifecta.
The Eagles went on to lead by 12 at half-time but the Giants threatened a comeback in the third quarter getting within three with two minutes left in the period on the back of a 6-0 run thanks to Jeylyn Sharpe and Brandon Holloway.
East Perth responded with the last five points of the third term to Anthony Golden but Goldfields still gave themselves a chance and were just three down win an early fourth quarter three from Sharpe.
Williamson responded immediately for East Perth, though, and then when the Eagles captain hit another with 5:35 left to make it a 12-point game, Giants coach Scott Rubery received a second technical after earlier receiving one in the first quarter as frustrations with the officiating grew.
The Eagles from there went on to lead by as much as 17 points before winning by 13.
Neither team finished with their head coach in charge either with East Perth without Aaron Berryman coming into the game due to other commitments leaving Dave Jackson in charge for his second game in 2018.
The Giants then finished the game without their coach Scott Rubery who was ejected with just over five minutes left in the contest after receiving his second technical foul of the afternoon.
Drew Williamson was the star of the show for the Eagles finishing the game with 39 points, six assists, three steals and two rebounds on the back of shooting 13/24 from the field, 5/12 from three-point range and 8/9 from the foul line.
Jonathan Morse added 18 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks for East Perth with Aiden Murphy contributing 13 points, Anthony Golden six points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and three steals, and Corey Easley five points, 10 boards, six assists and three blocked shots.
The Giants again sorely missed the work inside, on the glass and defensively of the injured Jake Martin but Jeylyn Sharpe top-scored with 19 points, 11 rebounds and three steals.
Kyle Sovine added 18 points, 12 rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots with Jerome Reid contributing 12 points and six boards, and Brandon Holloway 11 points, five rebounds and three assists.
WEEK 18 MEN’S SBL FIXTURES
Joondalup Wolves 104 lost to Perry Lakes Hawks 106
Willetton Tigers 90 defeated Mandurah Magic 73
Perth Redbacks 100 defeated Rockingham Flames 86
Cockburn Cougars 80 lost to South West Slammers 99
Geraldton Buccaneers 110 defeated Stirling Senators 98
Perry Lakes Hawks 99 defeated Goldfields Giants 87
Lakeside Lightning 87 lost to Joondalup Wolves 88
Mandurah Magic 74 lost to Kalamunda Eastern Suns 127
East Perth Eagles 78 lost to Willetton Tigers 91
East Perth Eagles 92 defeated Goldfields Giants 79