THE Joondalup Wolves and Geraldton Buccaneers kept winning in Round 14 of the Men’s SBL to maintain the top two spots but the Willetton Tigers continued their growth while the Goldfields Giants steadied themselves with a win in Kambalda over the Perry Lakes Hawks.
There was plenty at stake right across the Round 14 action in the Men’s SBL and by the end of the weekend, the Tigers had shown great heart despite being undermanned to replace the Perth Redbacks in the top eight despite the continued brilliance of Marshall Nelson.
The Giants then snapped a losing run against a Shawn Redhage, Clint Steindl-less Perry Lakes in Kambalda while the Wolves and Buccs had big Saturday night victories while the Rockingham Flames and Warwick Senators also won to settle inside the top four.
Round 14 in the Men’s SBL began on Friday night with the Lakeside Lightning beating the Cockburn Cougars 99-52 while the Mandurah Magic defeated the South West Slammers 80-69 and Willetton Tigers downing the Perth Redbacks 93-82.
Then on Saturday night, the Joondalup Wolves beat the Mandurah Magic 72-59, the Goldfield Giants downed the Perry Lakes Hawks 94-89 in Kambalda and the Geraldton Buccaneers won big 121-82 against the East Perth Eagles.
The Rockingham Flames also defeated the South West Slammers 92-69 and the Warwick Senators beat the Kalamunda Eastern Suns 96-90.
After 14 rounds of the 2019 season, the Joondalup Wolves (15-3) sit atop the standings ahead of the Geraldton Buccaneers (13-4), Warwick Senators (13-4) and Rockingham Flames (13-5) who make up the top four.
The Lakeside Lightning (12-5) sit in fifth position in front of the Perry Lakes Hawks (11-7), Goldfields Giants (10-8) and Willetton Tigers (9-10).
The Perth Redbacks have slipped outside the top eight at 8-11 with Kalamunda Eastern Suns (7-11), East Perth Eagles (5-13), Mandurah Magic (5-13), Cockburn Cougars (4-14) and South West Slammers (0-17) below them.
ROUND 14 MEN’S SBL
LAKESIDE LIGHTNING 99 defeated PRESTIGE HONDA MELVILLE COCKBURN COUGARS 52
The Lakeside Lightning maintained pace with the top four in the Men’s SBL and consigned the Cockburn Cougars to a 10th consecutive loss with a 47-point win at Lakeside Recreation Centre on Friday night.
Lakeside needs to keep winning to maintain touch with the teams in the top four and while Cockburn came into the game with nine straight losses, they have been significantly more competitive than that suggests.
The Lightning then took a while to shake off the Cougars, leading by just five points at quarter-time but they were able to stretch that advantage to 46-33 by half-time.
Cockburn then managed just nine points in the third quarter and 10 in the fourth while Lakeside put up 53 points in the second half to run out 99-52 winners to improve to 12-5 on the season.
It’s no surprise when you have Jarrad Prue in your line-up, but Lakeside dominated the boards with 55 rebounds to just 27 from Cockburn. From that, the Lightning managed 22 second chance points while their depth was key with 39 bench points to 18.
It was a dominant all-round showing from the Lightning who went on a 16-0 run at one stage with the final 47-point margin the biggest of the game.
Seven Lakeside players scored at least nine points with Jarrad Prue leading the way with 17 to go with 19 rebounds and two steals while hitting all eight of his shot attempts.
Rowan Mackenzie added 15 points, seven rebounds and six assists for the Lightning with Jobi Wall contributing 13 points, Jack Isenbarger 11 points and three assists, Kyle Armour 10 points and four assists, Ben Lee 10 points and four rebounds, and Michael Vigor nine points, five boards and four assists.
Cockburn had pulled off the upset over Lakeside earlier in the season, but couldn’t replicate that on Friday with Gavin Field top-scoring with 12 points to go with seven rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Jaarod Holmes added 10 points and four rebounds with Jake Harris contributing seven points, Hayden Bell six and Eric Milam six.
PRINT SYNC SOUTH WEST SLAMMERS 69 lost to MANDURAH MAGIC 80
The South West Slammers had good reason to think they were a genuine shot at their first win of the season at home on Friday night to a Mandurah Magic team minus superstar guard Shaun Stewart, but it wasn’t to be.
The Slammers were back home at Eaton Recreation Centre following a more competitive showing the previous Saturday night on the road to the Perry Lakes Hawks as they continue to chase that elusive first win of 2019 under coach John Triscari.
It looked as though Friday night might have been a genuine opportunity for that to happen as well with the Magic missing their star playmaker for a second straight game.
The Slammers then came out strongly as well to enhance those prospects to lead by seven points at quarter-time.
However, with Marvin Smith taking over the game for the Magic in the absence of Shaun Stewart, the visitors worked their way on top in the second period and by scoring 31 points, they took a 46-36 lead into the half-time interval.
That gave Mandurah a match-winning lead which they were able to maintain throughout the second half to 80-69 to score their fifth win of the season while the Slammers went to 0-16.
Mandurah ended up dominating the boards with 14 more rebounds than South West which helped them overcome 21 turnovers for the game.
Marvin Smith continues to show that he is capable of being a star in the SBL after a slow start to the season when he was still yet 100 per cent healthy. He produced a match-winning performance for the Magic with 31 points 13 rebounds on 12/20 shooting from the floor.
Travis Durnin played his first game as an opposition player back on his old home floor and scored 16 points to go with 15 rebounds, four assists and four steals for Mandurah.
Aaron Kearing also had eight points and five rebounds for the winners with Damon Ballantyne, Cousteau Kyle and Riley Parker all scoring seven points.
Terrell Carter top-scored for the Slammers with 21 points but only had one rebound despite his towering frame.
Michael Lay added 18 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals with Tyler Livingston contributing nine points and six rebounds, Cory Richardson six points and six boards, and Mitch Keller four points, eight rebounds and two blocked shots.
TEXTURE WA PERTH REDBACKS 82 lost to WILLETTON TIGERS 93
Playing with great heart can often lead to overcoming any number of obstacles and that continues to be the case for the Willetton Tigers who delivered another tremendous performance against the odds to beat the Perth Redbacks 93-82 at Belmont Oasis on Friday night.
The Redbacks got off to the ideal start with two threes from Marshall Nelson fresh off his remarkably efficient 42-point game the previous week.
That saw the home side lead 6-2 but the Tigers soon went on an 8-0 run to work their way on top and then go on to lead 26-16 by quarter-time having scored 20 of the last 26 points of the period.
Willetton were still up by 10 points by half-time but the Redbacks worked back into the game in the third quarter. With Nelson warming up, he put the Redbacks in front with a triple with 4:30 left in the term and the game was right up for grabs with Willetton leading 65-64 with one to play.
Buckets to Michael Garbellini and Andrew Black to open the fourth quarter saw Willetton lead back out to five and it soon grew to nine with successive scores from Scott Elder and Connor Mincherton.
Andrew Black made it 12 on a layup and while the Redbacks kept coming to make things interesting, the Tigers held on well for the 11-point victory.
Jackson Hussey top-scored for Willetton against the team he played with in 2018, finishing with 23 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Damien Scott added 22 points and seven rebounds for the Tigers while Mo Barrow produced 14 points, nine rebounds, nine assists and five steals.
But it was the host of other contributors that were key with Michael Garbellini finishing with eight points, Dylan Hampson seven points and three rebounds, Connor Mincherton seven points and two assists, and Andrew Black six points, nine rebounds and three assists.
Marshall Nelson produced another outstanding performance for the Redbacks with 38 points, eight rebounds, six assists and two steals on shooting 12/21 from the field, 7/13 from three-point territory and 7/8 from the foul line.
Majier Garang also had 12 points and 13 rebounds for the Redbacks, Joel Wagner 11 points and 10 assists, and Zac Gattorna nine points, 12 rebounds and four assists.
MANDURAH MAGIC 59 lost to CHAMBERS FRANKLYN JOONDALUP CITY WOLVES 72
It was a fresh Joondalup Wolves that made the trip south to Mandurah on Saturday night and they came away with a 13-point victory over the Shaun Stewart-less Magic.
Mandurah had won in Bunbury on Friday night against the Slammers despite the absence of Stewart, but trying to overcome the league-leading Wolfpack was always going to be significantly more of a challenge.
The Wolves hadn’t played since winning a thriller in Kalgoorlie the previous Saturday night and they came out strongly in the first period in Mandurah to lead 22-11 by quarter-time.
The Wolfpack extended that advantage to 44-30 by half-time in what proved to be a match-winning lead. Joondalup would be up by as much as 18 points through the night before settling with the 72-59 win.
The win sees the Wolves retain top position at 15-3 having now won seven straight while the Magic are 5-13 at the end of Round 14.
Wolves centre Kevin Davis top-scored for his team on an efficient night made up of 16 points, seven rebounds, two assists, two steals and a block while shooting 6/6 from the floor and 4/5 from the foul line.
Rob Huntington ensured that the Wolfpack front court was the difference between the two teams with both sides struggling shooting for the evening. Huntington finished with 15 points, two rebounds and two assists.
Ridell Camidge added eight points and two rebounds for Joondalup, Seb Salinas eight points and two assists, Reece Maxwell seven points and two boards, and Damian Matacz six points and four rebounds.
Travis Durnin put up 13 points and five rebounds for the Magic with Riley Parker contributing 13 points, three boards and two assists, Aaron Kearing 12 points and eight rebounds, and Marvin Smith 10 points and nine boards.
PRESTIGE HONDA MELVILLE COCKBURN COUGARS 88 defeated TEXTURE WA PERTH REDBACKS 85
Cockburn and Perth were both coming off playing, and losing, on Friday night so bouncing back was on their minds on Saturday evening at Wally Hagan Stadium.
While it’s just pride the Cougars are playing for at this point of the season, it was a crucial game for the Redbacks as they tried to bounce back from Friday’s loss at home to Willetton to avoid slipping outside of the top eight by the end of the round.
Despite losing to Lakeside on Friday night by 47 points, it was a rejuvenated Cougars outfit on their home floor on Saturday night.
Things were tight throughout the second half with scores tied at 19-19 at quarter-time and then 43-43 at half-time.
The Cougars managed to open up a three-point lead by three quarter-time but it was a game that felt destined to go down to the wire.
Ethan Vlahov hit a triple to open the fourth quarter to tie scores up again before Gavin Field restored Cockburn’s three-point edge at the foul line.
Marshall Nelson then threatened to win the game off his own hand for the Redbacks when he hit two triples and made another pull up jumper in no time. Those eight quick points helped Perth lead by three with just under five minutes left.
He then nailed another three-pointer a minute later and the Redbacks led by six and looked headed for the crucial win.
Cockburn would have something to say about that, though, and when Field nailed a three of his with 2:45 left the Cougars suddenly had regained a one-point advantage.
Field nailed another triple and Cockburn was up four with 1:30 left but Nelson would have one more say and he hit another from long-range for the Redbacks to tie scores up with 21 seconds left.
Adam Nener called the timeout for the Cougars to have a crack at a game-winning possession. It worked with Hayden Bell hitting the game-winning three and Cockburn won 88-85 when Nelson’s attempt at tying scores following a Redbacks timeout didn’t fall at the buzzer.
The win was Cockburn’s fourth of the season snapping a 10-game losing run while Perth slipped to 8-11 and ninth position with the two Round 14 losses.
Gavin Field and Marshall Nelson put on a show for their respective teams in a battle of two of the best Australian players in the league.
Field finished with 36 points, 10 rebounds, four steals and two assists for the Cougars on shooting 11/24 from the floor, 7/13 from three-point range and 7/7 from the foul line.
Nelson continued his stunning for the Redbacks with 37 points, nine rebounds and five assists on shooting 13/30 from the field, 6/16 from three-point territory and 5/6 from the foul line.
On top of the game-winner, Hayden Bell had 14 points and five rebounds for Cockburn with Jaarod Holmes contributing 13 points and four boards, and Jake Knight seven points, four assists and three rebounds.
Jayden Coburn contributed 10 points and four rebounds for the Redbacks, Majier Garang 10 points and 11 rebounds, and Joel Wagner nine points, nine assists and four rebounds.
NORTHERN STAR RESOURCES GOLDFIELDS GIANTS 94 defeated ID ATHLETIC PERRY LAKES HAWKS 89
The Goldfields Giants and Perry Lakes Hawks are locked in the battle over a playoff spot while also trying to stay in touch with the top four making Saturday night’s clash at Kambalda Recreation Centre one of great significance.
The Hawks did make the trip minus Clint Steindl and Shawn Redhage which made their job difficult but it was always going to be a tight affair, and that’s exactly how it panned out.
The Giants did start strongly in their annual home game in Kambalda to lead 25-18 by quarter-time.
But the Hawks responded in the second quarter outscoring the Giants 29 points to 22 and that means scores were all square going into half-time.
Goldfields pulled away in the third term and did lead by eight points heading into the fourth quarter before Rob Cassir got Perry Lakes going to start the fourth in his 250th SBL appearance.
Kyle Sovine then scored too to make it a four-point game against his team of 2018 but six points in the space of a couple of minutes for Goldfield from Mayo Malek kept the home team on top.
They were back out to an eight-point with a layup to Dave Humphries with six minutes remaining and then led by nine when Jay Bowie drained a three shortly after.
Goldfields still led by six with two minutes to go thanks to a Malek layup but then Bailey Cole-Heath knocked down a three to keep things interesting. When he then nailed another with 45 seconds left, it was game on with just a point the difference.
But the Hawks wouldn’t score again and the Giants iced the game at the foul line thanks to Humphries, Patrick Burke and Brandon Holloway to win 94-89.
It’s a big win for the Giants to snap a three-game losing slide and steady them inside the top eight at 10-8, just behind the now 11-7 Hawks.
Patrick Burke had a huge night for the Giants with 31 points and eight rebounds on a supremely efficient shooting 13/19 from the floor and 3/6 from downtown.
Jay Bowie added 16 points, 12 rebounds and six assists for Goldfields with Mayo Malek producing 15 points, eight boards, three assists and three blocked shots, Brandon Holloway 14 points and six assists, and Dave Humphries seven points, eight rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Ben Purser top-scored for Perry Lakes with 19 points, nine rebounds and four assists with Bailey Cole-Heath producing the performance of his career with 16 points and four boards.
Brian Carlwell added 14 points for the Hawks, Rob Cassir 11 points, six rebounds, six steals and three assists, Mitch Clarke 11 points, eight boards, four assists and three steals, and Ryan Smith 10 points, seven rebounds and four assists.
QUADRIO EARTHMOVING GERALDTON BUCCANEERS 121 defeated CMTG EAST PERTH EAGLES 82
The Geraldton Buccaneers were back home for a second straight week and continued their hot form going with a 39-point defeat of the East Perth Eagles at Active West Stadium on Saturday night.
The Buccs had overcome the Warwick Senators in Geraldton the week before in a terrific contest and they brought a four-match winning streak into this week’s clash with East Perth.
It was always going to be a big task for the Eagles on the road and that became evident early on with the Buccs scoring 32 points in the first quarter and holding them to just 18.
The Buccaneers kept the momentum rolling in the second quarter with 29 more points to 15 to head into half-time leading 61-33.
There was no let up in the third term either with Geraldton scoring 33 more points to 21 from East Perth as the Buccs would end up leading by as much as 48 points before ending up winning 121-82.
It’s a fifth successive victory for the Buccaneers since losing to the Wolves at HBF Arena and they sit in second position at 13-4 just behind that Joondalup team.
East Perth has now lost six straight to hold a 5-13 record on the season.
The Buccs finished the game with 23 more rebounds than the Eagles while shooting the ball phenomenally with 48/81 from the floor at 59 per cent and 15/27 from three-point range at 55 per cent.
Opposed to that, the Eagles went at 40 per cent from the field and 30 per cent from long-range, but they did get to the foul line 24 times, making 17 of those.
DeAngelo Isby continues his bright start to his time with Geraldton delivering another 24 points and eight rebounds on an efficient shooting effort of 10/14 from the field and 2/4 from beyond the arc.
Marcus Alipate added 21 points, six assists, four rebounds and three steals for the Buccs while Aaron Ralph produced another 15 points, eight rebounds and five assists, and Colter Lasher 14 points, seven boards and four assists.
Liam Hunt also had 13 points, 10 rebounds and six assists for the Buccaneers, Brayden Inger 12 points and three boards, and James Paringatai 11 points.
Cameron Williams top-scored for East Perth with 15 points and four rebounds with Shaquille Maharaj contributing 12 points and seven assists, Drew Williamson 12 points and four assists, Kieran Berry 12 points, and Ngang Lual 10 points.
SINCLAIR MCDONALD’S ROCKINGHAM FLAMES 92 defeated PRINT SYNC SOUTH WEST SLAMMERS 69
Rockingham was back home on Saturday night for their only game of Round 14 and despite the absence of key players, proved too strong beating the South West Slammers by 23 points at Mike Barnett Sports Complex.
The Flames came into the game minus Greg Hire who is in Amsterdam ahead of the FIBA 3×3 World Cup while import guard Caleb White continues to sit out with an injury he suffered the previous Friday night in the win against Mandurah.
The Slammers arrived in Rockingham having lost at home to the Magic the previous night and the Flames had a hard time shaking them off leading, leading by just five points at both quarter and half-time.
Rockingham did pull away in the second half, though, outscoring South West 50 points to 32 to cruise to the 92-69 victory.
The win is a third straight for the Flames despite them still not being able to have their full squad together, but they do sit in fourth spot at 13-5. The Slammers have now lost all 17 of their games in 2019 under coach John Triscari.
Ryan Godfrey top-scored for Rockingham with 23 points, five assists, four steals and four rebounds while knocking down 4/7 from three-point range.
Brad Robbins showed he still can produce too for the Flames with 17 points, five assists, three steals and three rebounds while Justin Beard contributed 17 points and four boards, and Luke Travers 16 points and five rebounds.
Terrell Carter top-scored for the Slammers again with 24 points to go with six rebounds and four assists.
Mitch Keller moved into the starting line-up and provided 10 points, six rebounds and three assists while Tyler Livingston added 12 points and six boards, James Allen eight points and Michael Lay six points, four rebounds, four assists and three steals.
BETHANIE WARWICK SENATORS 96 defeated KALAMUNDA EASTERN SUNS 90
The Warwick Senators bounced back well from a tough trip to Geraldton to beat the Kalamunda Eastern Suns by six points at Warwick Stadium on Saturday night, but they had to fight hard to shake off the visitors.
The Senators’ went down on the road to the Buccaneers last Saturday night seeing them drop from second position in the standings coming into hosting a Kalamunda team needing a win in their own right to maintain touch with a playoff spot.
The Eastern Suns then came out and started strongly to take a 29-26 lead into quarter-time before the Senators turned that around in the second term and scores were level by half-time.
The game was then all but decided in the third period with the Senators outscoring the Eastern Suns 27 points to 20. That opened up what would be the match-winning advantage with Warwick ending up winning 96-90.
The win improves the Senators to a 13-4 record on the season in third position while the Eastern Suns have now lost three on the trot to be 7-11 in 10th.
The Senators are still adjusting to life without Wani Swaka Lo Buluk who had been playing the point guard spot through the first half of the season. It was Cody Ellis who did that for a lot of Saturday night, finishing with 10 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and three steals.
Caleb Davis had a good night for Warwick too with 22 points, eight rebounds, five assists and two steals with Justin King producing 18 points and seven assists, Rob Anshila 14 points and 12 rebounds, Ngor Manyang 15 points, and Ash Litterick 13 points and eight boards.
Once more, there was a lot to like from the Eastern Suns’ performance and they continue to be a team that looks good but just aren’t able to string a run of wins together.
Louis Timms finished the night with 27 points, six rebounds and four steals with Josh Braun providing 24 points, 12 boards and five assists, and Javion Blake 13 points, seven assists and five rebounds.
Ryan Blanchett added 13 points and four rebounds for the Suns as well and Logan Viskovich 13 points and five boards.