Finals August 11&12 Recap

The finals are in full swing, it’s time to see who advanced and who’s gone fishing a little early this season!

State Championship Men
State Championship Women
Division One Men
Division One Women
Division Two Men
Division Two Women
Molten Victorian Youth Championship Men
Molten Victorian Youth Championship Women
Youth League One Men
Youth League One Women
Youth League Two Men
Youth League Two Women


State Championship Men

Hawthorn 94 def. Eltham 64

An inspired performance saw the Magic run out comfortable victors in game one.

Playing in front of their home fans it was a must-win for Hawthorn if they wanted to have any chance of progressing to the big dance, and they put themselves in the box seat with a thumping win.

A strong second term got things going before a dominant 23-11 third quarter blew the contest apart.

The ‘Cats didn’t offer a shot down the stretch as the margin blew out to 30, with some big adjustments needed before game two in Eltham next week.

Nelson Kirksey (23pts 5reb 6ast) led the way for the young Magic, who had 5 players hit double digits, while Jack Barry (14pts 4reb 9ast) fell just shy of a double-double.

For the visitors, Ben Waldren (16pts 6reb 4ast) and Justin Aver (14pts) led the scoring but it certainly wasn’t enough to compete with the red-hot Magic.

McKinnon 95 def. by Ringwood 100

The Hawks grabbed an important win on the road in game one, edging a plucky Cougars side in a tense finish.

McKinnon took a seven-point lead into the main break and looked up for the challenge in front of their home fans.

However, you just knew the Hawks would make a run at some stage in the second half, roaring back into the contest in the third term with a  26-16 quarter to head into the last break in front.

The Cougars refused to give up and pushed the visitors all the way but it was the experience and class of the Hawks which eventually won out, putting McKinnon on the brink of elimination as the series turns back to Ringwood for game two and potentially three.

Matt Fennell (33pts 12reb 5ast) was superb and Jacob Gibson (24pts 3reb) contributed strongly as he has done all season in the win.

For the Cougars, Deng Deng (28pts 11reb 5ast) was a tough cover and Jermaine Maybank (20pts 7reb 7ast) found some of his best form but it wasn’t enough.

Dillon Stith (9pts 3reb 1ast 3-14FG) didn’t have his best night out, accumulating 4 fouls as well.


State Championship Women

Knox 59 lost to Sunbury 63

The Jets are through to a third successive Grand Final series after taking down the Raiders in a thrilling contest.

Following a strong 22-­‐12 start, the visitors had to withstand a 26-­‐11 fightback by the Raiders in the third term, a dominant patch that put the home team in a great position to get the win. However, with plenty of experience and street smarts, the visiting Jets put together a 14-­‐6 run down the stretch to grab the win. Though neither team shot particularly well, the class of Josie Stockill (16pts), Orla O’Reilly (15pts) and Chelsea Burns (9pts, 10ast) was telling.

Knox had a great leader in Bec Ott (31pts), her performance was quite amazing, but she lacked scoring support at critical times. Knox’s next highest scorer was Leah Santomaggio with 8pts. Outside of Ott, the only other starter for Knox to score was Rachael Quick with 5pts, leaving Lucy Dawson, Georgia Stirton and Emily Fisher all scoreless on a collective 0/14 shooting.

With the Jets through to the big dance, the Raiders now have to face the Sharks in a Preliminary Final showdown to determine who Coach Kereama and his crew will meet.

Waverley 76 lost to Sth Peninsula 78

The young Sharks continue to impress and have progressed through to the Preliminary Final after toppling the Falcons in dramatic scenes.

In a tight battle, the Falcons led by 5pts with just over 6min to play, but from that point the Sharks went on an 11-­‐4 run to claim victory, which included a Jaz Shelley (10pts, 10rbs, 9ast) triple in the dying seconds to put the visitors up by 2pts. Backed by a large group of travelling supporters, the young Sharks enjoyed having four starters reach double-­‐digit scoring, including Peyeton Little (17pts, Liv Pollerd (15pts) and Jamilee Pearce (12pts).

For the Falcons, who have now seen their two senior teams exit finals on their home floor in the space of a week, Kelly Bowen (19pts) and Tegan Cunningham (19pts) did all they could. The Sharks now go on to meet Knox, the winner of that game set for a showdown with Sunbury in this year’s Grand Final series.


Division One Men

Western Port 94 lost to Chelsea 104

The Gulls have one foot in this year’s GF series after going 1­‐0 up against the Steelers, using a 57­‐42 first half to catapult them to victory. Chelsea has looked unstoppable ever since Mitch Riggs joined the crew, his 32pts and 7 triples in this contest yet another standout performance. As expected, Corey Standerfer led the way for the winners, the dynamic import dropping 40pts in another showstopper. For the Steelers, Dylan Travis (29pts, 12rbs, 8ast) did all he could, Chris Taylor added a terrific 20pts off the bench, while Bevan Camilleri scored 15pts. Though they dropped their home game, the Steelers dis shoot at an impressive 53% and did a lot right, especially off the pine from where they added 33pts to Chelsea’s 11 bench points. Next stop is Patterson River Stadium and it’s hard seeing Chelsea not progress from here.

Western Port 94 (Dylan Travis 29pts, Chris Taylor 20pts, Bevan Camilleri 15pts) lost to Chelsea 104 (Corey Standerfer 40pts, Mitch Riggs 32pts, Matt Brasser 17pts)

Shepperaton 87 def Keysborough 84

The Gators overcame a fast-­‐finishing Cougars outfit and a blistering­‐hot Gerrard Newby (46pts) to grab an opening win ahead of coming to Melbourne for the tough task of taking a game off Keysie on their home deck. The home team looked great early, building a 54‐39 lead by the half and looking strong behind some terrific team play and shared scoring. Not to be outdone, the Cougars found a spark in the last quarter with Newby pouring in 25pts and almost single‐handedly getting his team over the line. For the winners, Cam Vines (27pts, 11rbs) and Matt Bartlett (19pts, 8ast) led a starting unit that all reached double-­‐digit scoring. The same spread couldn’t be said for Keysie, with Newby’s 46pt haul well clear of Jamie LeClerc’s next-­‐ best 9pts. Calvin Enge, who averages 20pts per game, was well held to just 5pts on 1/9 shooting. For now, the Gators have given themselves a chance. Over to you now, Keysborough.

Shepparton 87 (Cam Vines 27pts, Matt Bartlett 19pts, Spencer Coleman 19pts) def Keysborough 84 (Gerrard Newby 46pts, Jamie LeClerc 9pts)


Division One Women

SEMI-FINAL 1

Warrnambool 88 defeated Mildura 65

Taking out a clinical 23-point dissection of the higher seed, the Mermaids defended their home court ably on Saturday night.

It was one-way traffic from the tip-off as the Mermaids raced out to a 29-18 opening term. Katie O’Keefe (23 points, 11 rebounds) was dominant from the get-go while Holly Greene (18 points, nine rebounds, seven assists) flirted with a triple-double. Equally as dominant was Amy Wormald (12 points, 24 rebounds, six assists) who reeled in a whopping bag of rebounds to shut down the Heat at both ends.

As the Mermaids kept racking up the points, the Heat remained gallant in defence as Alexis Gassion (14 points, 18 rebounds) reeled in a ton of rebounds in league with Vanessa Power (18 points) and Bronte Clark (13 points). But the game was all but iced up in the third as the Mermaids were led by O’Keefe, Wormald and Abbey Sutherland (nine points).

Nothing makes a road-trip better than going into it with a bit of confidence and the results to back it up… but at the same time it’s still one almighty hike across the countryside to face the Heat on home court. The Heat is 9-2 at home this year and demoralised Warrnambool the last time in a 107-79 lashing.

There’s plenty of intrigue left in this weekend as Mildura will have to make the most of their hard-earned home-court advantage.

SEMI-FINAL 2

Casey 77 defeated Geelong 67  

The ladder leaders showcased their skills on Saturday night as they walked away from AWA Alliance Bank Stadium with a convincing 10-point triumph.

Casey surged home in the second half, after trailing at the main break following an early run-on by the Supercats. Tess Feery (16 points, 13 rebounds, seven steals, five assists) was sensational as she did everything in her power to keep Geelong up and about. Alongside Caitlin Shadbolt (15 points, nine rebounds) and Olivia Virt (15 points), the Supercats pounced early but failed to carry on through the second half.

Casey exploded through the third term, charging into the fray through Jamie-Lee Jeffs (22 points, 10 rebounds), Tarryn Wilkin (15 points, five rebounds) and Keeley Patterson (15 points). The even-spread from the Cavaliers was equally as impressive as they shared the workload and put the Supercats to the brink across the board.

They’ll host the Supercats over the weekend at their home-town fortress in Casey. It’s hard to see the script changing to suit the Supercats, especially needing both wins, but there’s always a glimmer of hope. As we’ve seen with their late charge into the finals, Geelong has plenty on offer but they’ll need to utilise it all to go toe-to-toe with the Cavs.


Division Two Men

SEMI-FINAL 1

Coburg 66 defeated Melton 65

A thrilling one-point nailbiter was taken out by the Giants on the road.

Back-and-forth the whole way, neither side could steal the show. Coburg took off quickly but an emphatic second term from Dexter Graham (23 points), Wol Wol Ngong (12 points, 10 rebounds) and Mangar Manyang (13 points, nine rebounds) flipped a 10-point deficit around rapidly.

Jeremiah Juric (21 points) and Patrick Green (15 points, seven rebounds, five assists) loaded up for the Giants to push the margin out once again.

It boiled down to first term barrage as both sides had a taste of the lead, with Graham and Manyang putting Melton ahead… but the last laugh was left for Green. Coburg made the most of the last-ditch attempt as Green nailed the match-winning three-pointer to rock the roof off the stadium.

With two bites of the cherry at home to take out the semi-final, Coburg will be buoyant heading into the weekend, but Melton still has plenty of tricks left up its sleeve. Can Coburg shut them all down?

On the same note, Melton will need to toil just to force this to three… can they take two on the road to launch themselves into the finals? Certainly leaves plenty of questions to answer heading into this deciding weekend.

SEMI-FINAL 2

Mildura 76 defeated Craigieburn 70

The Heat is…. on. Tired cliches aside, the efforts across the board from Mildura led them to an emphatic six-point triumph over the top seed Craigieburn.

The fairytale run continued for the country stars as they defended home-court ably and forced the Eagles to take it in three if they want to stay alive.

The three-pronged attack from Calvin Henry (16 points, eight rebounds, eight assists), Dallas Brown (16 points, 11 rebounds) and David Meyer (15 points) dug deep to take the triumph.

Despite flying out of the blocks, Mildura couldn’t put the match away and left the door open for a Craigieburn fightback. Knocking down back-to-back 25 point terms, the Eagles soared through the likes of Samon Smith (20 points, nine rebounds) and Blake Dickinson (15 points, 15 rebounds). Slashing the gap to three with less than a minute on the clock, the Eagles couldn’t roll the dice one more time, leaving cool, calm Calvin Henry to knock down a free throw to take the inspired win.

Can the sixth seed take this confidence from the home court and transport it to Melbourne?

Craigieburn has defended its home-court ably this year – with an eight-and-three record – and will have the crowd on their side. However it pans out, it will certainly be one for the ages.


Division Two Women

Craigieburn 65 def Wallan 57

A last quarter burst from Craigieburn saw them secure the first spot in the Division 2 Womens Grand Final, defeating the Panthers by 8 in front of the Eagles home crowd.

A subtle change in strategy from Coach Carroll saw the Eagles turn around their unfavourable form in recent times but they had to fight hard for the victory.

Leading by a single bucket at the half, Wallan got it back to a point at the last change, setting the scene for an exciting final quarter.  When Alex Darby drained a trey to give the Visitors a 5 point lead, things were looking shaky for the Eagles.  But, to their credit Craigieburn were resilient enough to level the match with just under 5 mins left and when O’Nial drew her 5th foul, the Eagles could smell a win in their sights.

For Craigieburn, captain Kellie Bailey-Lynn led the scoresheet for the home side (13p) and had support from Sally Procak (11p) and Tahlia Prestia (10p).  Nicole Cameron also collected 11 boards.  For the second week in a row, Emmie O’Nial (17p/11rb) recorded a double with Alex Darby and Sarah Scott (11p each) also contributing.

Another week off for Craigieburn whilst Wallan will need to bank one more win back home to secure the chance to take on their arch-rivals for the 3rd time in 5 weeks in the Grand Final.

Melbourne Uni 40 def by Blackburn 48

A sluggish first half from the Black Angels was enough for the Vikings to maintain their advantage in the second half to record an 8 point win and advance to the Preliminary Final.

On the back of another outstanding game from Andrea Belmonte (21p/16rb) who played all 40, Melbourne Uni just couldn’t seem to limit her influence on the game. Despite that, the game was still in the balance going into the final term with the home side trailing by 8 but weren’t able to put a dent in the deficit in the last with the second quarter proving the ultimate difference.

So unfortunately for Black Angels, their highly competitive season draws to a close as the Vikings continue their irresistible form over the past few weeks to earn a spot in the Prelim Final against Wallan at R B Robson Stadium next week in what promises to be an exciting match up.


Molten Victorian Youth Championship Men

Eltham Wildcats 58 def. by Nunawading Spectres 71

Nunawading win series 2-0

 

The Nunawading Spectres have captured the 2018 Molten Victorian Youth Championship Men’s title with a 13-point win over the Eltham Wildcats in Game Two.

Using an incredible first half defensive display the Spectres held a commanding 10-point lead at the main break. Led by the outstanding games of Jack Gandolfo (20 points, four rebounds) and Thomas Graham (14 points, nine rebounds) the Spectres were the better team on the day.

Christian Yammouni was the best for the Wildcats scoring 20 points. Eltham had it all in front of them, hoping the Wildcats home crowd would get them over the line to keep the series alive. But the Spectres controlled the rebounding battle and were able to control the game.

Heading into the playoffs sitting third in the Terrill conference, the Spectres had a massive challenge in front of them. But finding form at the right time of the season and playing some outstanding basketball has seen them crowned at the deserved champions of 2018.


Molten Victorian Youth Championship Women

Game 2 – Sandringham Sabres 69 def. Knox Raiders 57

Series tied 1-1

 

The Sandringham Sabres have used a stellar opening term to level the Molten VYCW championship series 1-1 defeating the Raiders by 12 points. With their season on the line, the Sabres were on a mission from the opening tip-off jumping out to a commanding 15-point lead at the end of the first. Sandringham had four players score in double-figures in the contest, with Ella Batish leading the way scoring 14. It proved to be enough to overcome the outstanding game from Knox’s Althea Angeles. Without stars Eliana Bravington and Leah Santomaggio, Angeles gave her all scoring a game-high 16 points, dishing five assists, and pinching five steals, but it wasn’t enough to help Knox close out the series. Forcing 21 turnovers and swiping 15 steals the Sabres were back to their ferocious best on Saturday night. Making for an intriguing Sunday match-up to decide the series.

Game 3 – Sandringham Sabres 61 def. Knox Raiders 53

Sandringham win series 2-1

 

The Sandringham Sabres have re-captured the Molten Victorian Youth Championship Women’s title for the second straight year after defeating the Knox Raiders by eight points. In an incredible back-and-forth battle, the Sabres trailed by one-point heading into the final quarter of the season. Knox had wrestled back the lead in the third quarter, but a raucous Sabres home crowd willed Sandringham on to the victory. Meg Ragauskas led the way for her Sabres recording a tough double-double (12 points, 11 rebounds) but she wasn’t alone as again four Sandringham players scored in double-figures. The Raiders were propelled by captain Meagan Wylie’s game-high 16 points but couldn’t hang on down the stretch. Sandringham were top team all season long and deserved winners of the 2018 title.


Youth League One Men

Sunbury Jets 84 def. by Waverley Falcons 90

Waverley wins series 2-0

 

The Waverley Falcons are the 2018 Youth League One Men’s champions after defeating the Sunbury Jets in the game of the season.

In a battle between the two heavyweights of the league, the blockbuster needed to go into overtime to see the Falcons fly away with a 6-point win and capture the title.

Leading by five points at half-time, the Jets were buoyed by a wild home crowd cheering them on. But the Falcons were up for the challenge, battling back in the second half and overcoming the pain of Dylan Larkin’s missed free-throw with 22 seconds remaining in regulation to win the match-up in OT.

Larkin was fantastic in the victory scoring 15 points and pulling down 14 rebounds, but it was Nathan Malloy’s 23 points which led the way for Waverley. Sunbury’s Nathan Baker wasn’t ready for the Jets season to be over trying valiantly all game long scoring a game-high 26 points, grabbing nine rebounds, and dishing five assists. But even his stellar game couldn’t stop the surging Falcons from causing the upset.

The Jets had been sensational during the regular season losing only two games but couldn’t replicate their devastating regular-season form in the playoffs. While the Falcons had been on a tear in the post-season, using grit and determination to see them upset the Jets and sweep the series.


Youth League One Women 

Sunbury 62 defeated Geelong 50

Sunbury wins series 2-0

The Jets only needed one of their home games this past weekend to book their ticket back to the grand final. This time however, it’s in the division above the one they were victorious in just twelve months ago.

In what was a thrilling contest for the first twenty minutes, the two sides could barely be kept apart; the home side taking just a two-point lead into the main break. However, the third quarter was where the Jets made their move in a prominent 19-10 quarter.

Despite neither side shooting the ball particularly well, it was Chloe Angove who had her fingerprints all over this contest, finishing with a massive 25 points and 16 rebounds. Leading her team to victory was also Nyomi Stowers who chipped in with nine points and four assists.

For the visitors, their 21 turnovers in comparison to Sunbury’s 11 proved pivotal, as Carly Sanders bounced back from a quiet game a week ago to post 15 points and 10 rebounds. Gemma Morison also recorded 14 points and seven rebounds, while the ‘Cats couldn’t find enough from their bench who contributed just five points.

The Jets will now host Game One of the 2018 Youth League One Women’s grand final in a week’s time.

Keilor 87 defeated McKinnon 78

Keilor wins series 2-0

It may have been a one vs. four match-up and the number one may have been victorious in a clean sweep, but the McKinnon Cougars were in this up to their eyeballs and their comeback in game two has just fallen short against a team who were simply near unstoppable throughout the regular season.

The spoils must go to the victors however, and the Keilor Thunder did exactly what they needed to do, closing out the Cougs in two games to advance to the 2018 Youth League One Women’s grand final.

They’ve found contributors easy to come by this season and they come from everywhere! Emily Ellis finished off her brilliant series with a game high 22 points which went well with four rebounds and four assists. Tashia Overby was massive with 21 points and 15 rebounds, while the same could be said for Adele Rogers (10 points, 17 rebounds) and Zoe Garth (10 points, 9 assists).

Keilor shot the ball at 45%FG from the floor as well as out rebounding their opponents by +19, two key stats which put the contest firmly in the home side’s favour.

Chelsea Bransden bounced back from being well held by the Thunder last weekend, recording 22 points, six rebounds, five assists and six steals.

Keilor now head back out onto the road to Boardman Stadium next week, before heading home to host grand final games two and potentially three if required.


Youth League Two Men

Semi Final 1

Frankston 108 defeated Craigieburn 77

The Frankston Blues have booked their ticket to the 2018 Youth League Two Men grand final with a resounding victory over a gallant Craigieburn outfit.

It seemed the Eagles just had no answer for the offensive onslaught that was put in front of them; the Blues stamping their authority as to why they finished the number one ranked side in the competition.

Craigieburn were actually the team that started the better, jumping out to a six-point lead. But the Blues were not going to let that last long, snapping back and using a 21-7 second stanza to put the clamps on the contest.

It didn’t stop there, Frankston put up 36 points in both third and fourth quarters, completely wiping the visiting Eagles off the floor. Craigieburn, to their credit, did everything they could to keep pace with the home side through star Abraham Solano (24 points, 6 rebounds) and Brodie Naggs (11 points, 7 rebounds).

The home side ended with six players in double figures, led by Tristan Lloyd’s 18 points and 15 rebounds. It would have been pleasing for head coach Glenn Eames that his bench stood tall when it mattered, with guys like Tyson Carr (13 points), Vincent Monaghan (12 points) and Tom Garrett (11 points) all provided something.

The Blues now head on the road for the first time this post-season, as Cardinia Life is their next destination for game one of the grand final series.

Semi Final 2

Collingwood 69 defeated by Pakenham 82

Pakenham have come up trumps at Darebin Stadium this past weekend, upsetting the much-fancied Collingwood All Stars to qualify for the 2018 Youth League Two Men grand final.

In what was built up to be an excellent match-up between two outstanding outfits, the Warriors were the ones that finished the better, making sure that they were not to be outdone by the All Stars who were fresh off the week off.

It was an excellent second half push which did the damage; the two sides only separated by two-points at half time. The beginning of the end started in the third, as the Warriors stretched their lead to nine, before putting it beyond doubt with a 23-19 fourth term to signal their intent that a championship is well and truly on the radar.

Nathan Dodgson was brilliant with a team high 16 points and nine rebounds, while Ned Weideman (15 points, 7 rebounds) and Matt D’Arcy (12 points, 4 rebounds, 9 assists) did their part.

For the All Stars, it wasn’t to be this season, and they will surely have to look back and be extremely proud of their efforts after their promotion last season. Athiaan Manyiel finished with 17 points, 15 rebounds and four blocks, while Deng Dut had 13 points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals.

The Warriors will now host game one of the grand final series next week and within a fortnight we’ll be crowning a new champion of Youth League Two Men – the Blues or the Warriors!


Youth League Two Women

Elimination Final 1

Pakenham Warriors 71 def. Whittlesea Pacers 63 

The Pakenham Warriors have used a stellar second-half effort to defeat the Whittlesea Pacers by eight points.

Trailing at half-time, the Warriors ramped up the defensive pressure to run away with the hard-fought victory and keep their season alive.

Pakenham were relentless on the defensive end swiping 16 steals and forcing 24 turnovers from a shell-shocked Pacers squad.

Ellie Coutts and Samantha Neil were the stars combing for 37 points, 25 rebounds and 11 steals in the victory.

LT Poa was gallant in defeat for Whittlesea scoring a game-high 25 points, but it wasn’t enough to advance the Pacers.

The Warriors will now head to a preliminary final next week full of confidence after the stirring victory.

Qualifying Final 1

Casey Cavaliers 74 def. Frankston Blues 62

The Cavaliers have run away with a commanding 12-point win over the Blues to advance to the Youth League Two Women’s grand final.

Leading by 1-point at half-time, Casey was on a mission in the third quarter blowing the game open outscoring Frankston, 28-14, and never looking back.

The Cavaliers forged their way into the big game, led by Lauren Tuplin’s game-high 18 points and captain Tess Young’s tough double-double (13 points, 11 rebounds).

While Frankston captain Tori Jackson was sensational with 18 points and eight rebounds, but the Blues couldn’t upset the dominant Cavaliers.

Frankston will now head into a preliminary final, while the Cavaliers will enjoy their well-earned week off before tipping off in the grand final.

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