Coach and Player of the Month - April


State Championship Men

Coach of the Month - Al McAughtry (Diamond Valley)

Seven wins from seven games during the month of April is more than enough to earn COTM gong and in the case of Al McAughtry and his crew down at Diamond Valley, it’s also set a strong base going forward as they challenge for a finals berth. Impressively, a R2 win against Ringwood (88-82) really made a few sit up and take notice, as has the consistent performances of his young and determined team.

Player of the Month - Dejan Vasijevic (Diamond Valley)

Diamond Valley’s young gun beat home some very impressive players, including imports Charles Polk, Chris Kaba and Jeremy Smith, while home-grown Jason Reardon is never far away when awards are being handed out. Vasijevic was dominant during April, going for 25pts @ 47%, 6rbs and nearly 1ast per game, whilst also landing more than 3 treys each time he stepped out. His biggest haul came against Werribee when he dropped 42pts with 9 triples.

State Championship Women

Coach of the Month - Rob Baldwin (Knox)

How can you go past a 6-0 start to the season, which included a very impressive 64-60 victory over Hume City. Baldwin has the Raiders firing, especially his younger brigade who have successfully made the transition to senior basketball. Even more impressive is his team’s defensive prowess, holding teams to just 49.5pts per game.

Player of the Month - Colleen Planeta (Hume City)

No surprises here, the Broncos import just picked up from where she left off last season. Beating home Nicole Romeo, Emma Pearce, Tegan Cunningham and Brittany Carter, amongst others, Planeta was more than solid during April with 20pts, 10rbs and 2.5blks per game, plus her shooting clip was above 50%. Amazingly, during her 50 game career thus far in the Big V she has topped 1000pts and 500rbs. Now that is consistency!

Division 1 Men

Coach of the Month - Paul Lankford (Blackburn)

The Vikings are 7-1 after being bottom feeders in 2015, with six wins without a blemish in April. Not only that, the closest win they had was nine points on the road at Sunbury, highlighting their dominance. Coach Lankford has his side firing early and looking the goods in 2016.

Player of the Month - Ish Sanders (Sunbury)

Sanders has taken the league by storm, averaging 33.3ppg through April, with a high of 48 against Chelsea mid-month. Remarkably, that wasn't the only time he reached 40, with 45 points coming in a tough win at Geelong to finish the month. He also pulled down just under six boards per game and dished out just under three assists. One gets the feeling this isn't the last time we hear from Sanders in 2016.

Division 1 Women

Coach of the Month - Kennedy Kereama (Sunbury)

The Jets haven't dropped a game yet this season and haven't looked like it either, with Coach Kereama getting plenty out of a very talented roster. Of their five wins for the month, two were by over 50 and all but one was by more than 15 points, illustrating just how dominant the Jets have been to date.

Player of the Month - Malika Jackson (Western Port)

Jackson was in ripping form through April, leading the Steelers to five straight wins and scoring at 26.6ppg along the way. Pair that with her 12.6 boards per contest and a shooting clip of 47% from the floor, and we have a player who truly dominated her opponents for the month. She even shot the three ball at 34% through the five games, including 5-for-8 from deep in a season-high 34-point effort against Mildura.

Division 2 Men

Coach of the Month - Kenny Brunner (Western Port)

The Steelers have jumped out of the blocks with a 6-0 start to the season and the man pulling all the right strings is Kenny Brunner. In an impressive opening month, which has included wins against Mornington and Craigieburn, the Steelers have flown under the radar and been most impressive under Coach Brunner’s leadership. Now having to deal with tough times after fire destroyed their stadium, you be assured that this team will charge on and be a real contender this season.

Player of the Month - Adam Ballinger (Mornington)

The former NBL star beat home a hot field of candidates, including Manny Hendrix, Dylan Webb, Jordan Harding, Justin King and Benji Tamir, but with averages of 23.7pts, 11.5rbs and 2.2ast you can’t look past his numbers. Clearly the focus of every opponent and their defensive strategies, Ballinger has really only been held one (11pts vs Collingwood), while at the other end of the scale he broke loose for 40pts in the opening round against Craigieburn.

Division 2 Women

Coach of the Month - Mike Funke (Blackburn)

The Blackburn Vikings have been the form team of the competition thus far, much thanks to a five game win streak throughout the course of April. At the helm, Mike Funke who has his girls fit and firing! The Vikings just haven't won either, they've won their five games by an average of 27 points.

Player of the Month - Alysha Carden-David (Altona)

A big month for ACD, just pipping Tarryn Wilkin thanks to that scoring power she exemplified in April. At 23.25ppg and 10.75rpg, Carden-David put together complete performances trying to put the team on her back.

Molten Victorian Youth Championship Men

Coach of the Month - Nick Abdicevic (Melbourne)

With a host of teams undefeated for the month of April, Abdicevic and his Tigers were the brightest of them all, with wins coming against some pretty handy opposition! 6-0, with the big one coming against McKinnon whose record doesn't recognise their game. Melbourne are fit and firing for the next part of the season.

Player of the Month - Max Cody (McKinnon)

Cody, Cody, Cody. Could it have been anyone else? 7 games, his lowest scoring output a measly 16 points - three games over 30 points, including 42 against Nunawading. Cody averaged 28.28ppg and shot the ball at 48%FG. Quite impressive!

Molten Victorian Youth Championship Women

Coach of the Month - Rob Dielemans (Ringwood)

The Ringwood Hawks are the team right now and they certainly flexed their muscle in April. Six wins and zero losses paints a pretty picture, however they were wins over Dandenong (x2), Melbourne, Kilsyth, Eltham, DV and Bulleen. Dielemans has his team on song right now, with a host of players stepping up at key times.

Player of the Month - Monique Conti (Melbourne)

Conti has been on fire in April, despite missing some games due to winning gold at the U/20 Nationals with Vic Metro. In three games, she averaged 23ppg and 6apg, shooting the ball at 40.9% from the field. She's leads the league in scoring and is leading the Tigers to a pretty position on the ladder.

Youth League 1 Men

Coach of the Month - Craig Bennett (Altona)

It's been an impressive start to the year for the Gators, with Bennett leading his troops to a 5-1 month in April. It's been their offence that has been the key, scoring under 93 points on only one occasion through the month. Coach Bennett will be thrilled to be sitting on top of the table and will be looking for the same output from his squad for the rest of the season.

Player of the Month - Dominic Bruno (Coburg)

It's tough to go past Bruno for POTM considering his blistering start to the year. On the season he leads the league in points with 28.3 a game, his average for this month has been 29.8. In April he eclipsed the 30-point mark on 3/6 games. Adding to that is 5.1 rebounds per game for the month, all while shooting above 85% from the line. Dominic Bruno is the clear POTM for April.

Youth League 1 Women

Coach of the Month - Angela Heigh (Warrandyte)

The Venom were locked in during April, making a statement that they're in it to win it in 2016. A 6-1 record throughout the month proved that Warrandyte were ready to punish teams where applicable. Heigh once again has stepped up to the plate and prepared her team to its full potential - the trick is now to carry on with it. 

Player of the Month - Lyndsey Hoogenhout (Coburg)

A big four games in the month of April, notching up three double doubles, and another game that including a casual six blocks! Hoogenhout stuffed the stat sheet every time she stepped onto the floor for the Giants youth team, averaging 14.5ppg, 13.6rpg, 2.1spg and 3.3bpg. Don't be surprised to see her lead the league in some of these categories at the end of the year!

Youth League 2 Men

Coach of the Month - Matt Baker (Mornington)

A big month for the Breakers bunch, remaining undefeated in 2016. A winning margin of nearly 26 points every time they hit the floor shows how Baker has his team running right now. Prepared for each and every game, the Breakers aren't ready to slow down, and it shows with their fourth quarter performances despite big leads. 

Player of the Month - Brad Murfett (Chelsea)

Murfett has been the barometer down at Chelsea so far this season. In five games through April he has averaged 21.8ppg and 10.2rpg which includes just the seven points and one rebound he collected in his last game against Mornington (in 13 minutes) before going down with injury. The Gulls are hoping he returns sooner rather than later!

Youth League 2 Women

Coach of the Month - Liam Glascott (Keilor)

It's hard to go past the ladder leading team coach, in the Keilor Thunder's Liam Glascott.  Winning form is good coaching form, and apart from dropping one game in April, Keilor as a group have been a very slick unit scoring at will and defending most times equally as well, maintaining an average winning margin of 23 over April and allow the Thunder to play an exciting free-flowing offensive game.  A team well-drilled is a team well-coached and a 5-1 April record is a powerful testament to that.

Player of the Month - Amy Smith (Keilor)

Leading in almost every positive basketball statistic that can be captured this season, Amy Smith has been tearing up the opposition, scoring 123 points for the month of April averaging 20.5ppg and 54 rebounds at an average of 9rpg.  Teams are finding it tough to defend her.  The amazing part about the points tally is that a lot of them have come from the field, as opposed to beyond the perimeter.  Amy has also shown so far in April that she is also a very reliable foul shooter as well.  Even more amazing was the fact that after playing for most of the game in her historic quadruple-double, she then suited up and played half a game with the Thunder's Division 1 Womens side as part of a Keilor double-header that afternoon.  Keilor aren't a one-person team, but Amy is certainly showing plenty of energy and leadership in her team to help get the Thunder to a commanding position one third through the season.


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