Another weekend of hoops ready to bounce, who will take W’s this time out?
Here we are; Grand Final weekend where we will see one team crowned as Big V Championship Men’s winners for season 2019.
Game one went perfectly to the script for the Cougars who were able to rotate game time whilst putting one hand on the trophy. Dillon Stith again was huge for the Cougars with another double-double, putting up 23 points and 13 rebounds, whilst Adrian Tomada put up a helping hand with 22 points of his own. The Cougars also saw a lot of action out of their bench players with Tom Boyle going 100% from the field in his 13-minute spell, gathering 10 points. The most dominant stat line from game one was the rebounds with McKinnon almost doubling Hume City and controlling the air battle. Twenty-three offensive rebounds helped give the Cougars’ shooters in Stith and Tomada first use of the basketball as they were able to attempt 10 more shots throughout the contest. Hume City hosted the contest and whilst going down by 12 points managed to take some positives out of the game. Seven players played over 20 minutes and they had four players in double figures for points. Jordan Coleman was perhaps the best for the Broncos with 23 points, seven rebounds and six assists, with Jake Martin also contributing 15 points. Jamal Shabazz continued his stunning form with 19 points and seven boards – averaging over 22 points in his last three games – signifying that he is able to cope with the added finals pressure.
This weekend will see it all happen with McKinnon hosting Hume City in two matches (if required) for the title. With McKinnon grabbing the win on the road and having not lost for over 10 games, they are going in heavy favourites, but Hume City have proven to be good on the road, troubling the Magic last week twice in two days. If McKinnon win the aerial battle it could be all over very quickly, however, always expect the unexpected in a final!
McKinnon vs Hume City — Sat 7pm — GESAC
McKinnon vs Hume City — Sun 1pm — GESAC (if required)
The Keilor Thunder will battle the Werribee Devils in the best-of-three Grand Final series to decide who will be crowned the Big V Championship Women’s winners for season 2019.
The Devils will be coming into the first game this Saturday full of confidence after they beat first-placed Sunbury Jets, 77-74, in a nail-biting Preliminary Final last week. Maxine Allan (19 points) and Alexyz Vaioletama (18 points, two steals) will be looking to repeat their efforts when they host the Thunder on Saturday night. The Thunder have undoubtedly been the in-form team in the competition over the past month as they have beaten both Werribee and Sunbury in back-to-back games. It was only three weeks ago when these two sides met in the second Qualifying Final, which saw the Thunder win in a convincing manner; 88-62. The Thunder’s Erin Bollmann and Genna Anderson will be the ones to stop if the Devils want to go 1-0 up in the series.
Werribee vs Keilor — Sat 7pm — Eagle Stadium
Division One Men
Game one of the Division One Men’s Championship Grand Final series between the Sunbury Jets and the Warrandyte Venom takes place at Boardman Stadium this weekend. The Jets come off a hot series against last year’s runners-up Shepparton, edging the Gators 84-103 in the decisive third game of their three-game series. Warrandyte were troubled by Keysborough, however in a low scoring affair the Venom came out on top, 78-66, to book their spot in the Grand Final. Warrandyte will head in favourites for the series after finishing the season 19-5 and in top spot. Sunbury meanwhile make their first Division One Grand Final appearance since 2009. Expect a tight series with each side getting the better of each other in their two encounters this season. Ishmael Sanders will be the one to watch this series for the Jets, coming off 33, 42 and 33 point games in his series against Shepparton, and sits among the leaders in points per game with 27.2 to his name. Warrandyte will be backed in by Jacob Thom and Brenton Charles. Charles is second in the league for average assists with 5.2 per game while Thom is the Venom’s highest scorer averaging 17.8 points a game. Both will need to fire against the red-hot Sanders and his Jets teammates in what will be a tough trip for the Venom.
Sunbury vs Warrandyte — Sat 7pm — Boardman Stadium
Division One Women
Hawthorn and Mildura face off in game two of their Grand Final series on Saturday evening at the Boroondara Sports Complex, with the Magic currently holding a 1-0 lead in the best-of-three affair. Hawthorn prevailed in game one last Saturday – 89-87 – in a tight encounter at the Toyota Hothouse. Nyilah Jamison-Myers led all five Magic starters in double-digit scoring, tallying 24 points to go with 15 rebounds. Lara Edmanson was also prolific with 19 points and eight boards. Alyesha Lovett (29 points, seven rebounds, six assists, three steals) and Vanessa Power (23 points) put in strong performances for the Heat in that one. The Magic went 9-3 at home during the regular season, while Mildura were 8-4 on the road. If Mildura win game two, both teams will return to the Boroondara Sports Complex on Sunday for a game three to determine the Division One Women’s Champions for season 2019.
Hawthorn vs Mildura — Sat 6.30pm — Boroondara Sports Complex
Hawthorn vs Mildura — Sun 2pm — Boroondara Sports Complex (if required)
Division Two Men
Camberwell and Southern Peninsula will face off in game one of their Grand Final series on Saturday night at Balwyn High School. Both teams are coming off impressive game three wins in their respective Semi Final series. The Dragons got by Mildura 80-71 at Balwyn High School on Sunday, behind a 22-point outing from Maxwell Barkeley, adding 12 rebounds, four assists, one steal and one block. Meanwhile the Sharks blew out Craigieburn 94-66 at Dromana Stadium as both Brady Neill (25 points, 11 rebounds, six assists, two steals) and Troyce Manassa (22 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists, three steals) filling up the box score. Camberwell hold a 10-2 record at home this season, while the Sharks went 9-3 on the road. These teams split their regular season meetings 1-1, each winning on the road.
Camberwell vs Southern Peninsula — Sat 6pm — Balwyn High School
Division Two Women
Melbourne University will go up against the Pakenham Warriors in the best-of-three Grand Final series to determine who will be crowned Champions of Division Two Women for 2019. Pakenham had the weekend off as they progressed straight through to the Grand Final after beating Melbourne University 71-61 in the first Qualifying Final two weeks ago. Meanwhile the Black Angels booked their place in the Grand Final after defeating Blackburn by nine points last Saturday night at the Melbourne University Sports Centre. Emmie O’Nial (19 points) and Amelia Smith (18 points, three steals) were outstanding in the Preliminary Final and will be out to prove a point come game one on Saturday against the Warriors. The Warriors finished in second position on the ladder behind Melbourne University and will be looking to their star players to get them the Championship. Ellie Coutts, Ebony Robinson and Daphnee Frieson have been great for them in recent weeks with Coutts beginning to shoot the three ball better. Both Coutts and Frieson average 11.3 points per game for the season and the Warriors will be looking for more of the same come Saturday night.
Melbourne University vs Pakenham — Sat 7pm — Melbourne University Sports Centre
Youth League One Women
Keilor have not lost a game since May 26thand in game one of the Grand Final seris they showed just why they are the team to beat. Sharp shooter Tess Heal – who leads the competition for free throw percentage – went at 100% from the line again and put up 21 points with 10 rebounds in a finals MVP display. Going 64% from the field, she had 10 more points than any other player on the court and showed her worth to the Thunder. Defensive rebounds and field goal percentage were the two major categories where the Thunder got on top in game one, in what was a tight tussle. Casey went just 25.8% from the field and amassed 19 fewer defensive rebounds leaving them chasing the Thunder in vital areas. Adele Rogers also had good numbers with 10 points and nine rebounds shooting 100% from the field. Alexandra McKellar had an unusual night missing all her shots in her 15 minutes from the floor, and will be hoping to give her team that decisive energy off the bench if they are to win it this weekend. Three pointers could be the decider this weekend with only six scored in the entire game from 42 attempts. Star player for the Cavs, Lauren Tuplin, had a dirty night ending with just three points, whilst Rebecca Peacock and Peta Rhodes flew the flag for the home side, combining for 21 points and 11 rebounds. Kim Shankland was the shining light for the Cavs coming off the bench to shoot a Cavs’ game high 57% from the field and contribute 11 points. The Cavs pushed Keilor early in the season and will need to be on from the start, hitting their shots and having a bigger presence under the rim if they are any chance in the Grand Final. Keilor will go in as favourite on their home court, having only lost once this whole season at the Keilor Basketball Stadium.
Keilor vs Casey — Sat 7.30pm — Keilor Basketball Stadium
Keilor vs Casey — Sun 2pm — Keilor Basketball Stadium (if required)
Youth League Two Men
The Champions of the Youth League Two Men’s division will be decided this weekend, when Craigieburn host Collingwood in an enormous game two clash. Craigieburn’s undisputed dominance this season did not intimidate the All Stars at all, coming out to prevail convincingly over a disappointing Eagles outfit by 27 points in game one of the three-game Grand Final series. Collingwood were exceptional in their game one match up, proving to any doubters that they have all the class and skill required to come home with the Championship by the end of the weekend. It was hardly a surprise to see the display of skill and talent exhibited by Athiaan Manyiel. The Collingwood star managed to score 26 points and produce 15 rebounds as Collingwood soared to a strong advantage over their rivals. Manyiel’s efforts have seen his average points rise to 22.7, as no player has scored more points than him this season. It poses the question of whether the All Stars are Craigieburn’s kryptonite, having defeated them during the regular season as well – one of the Eagles’ only two losses for the regular season. They have had a scintillating season however, and are more than capable of redeeming themselves this weekend. The Eagles did defeat Collingwood in their first encounter this season as well, so they have form in that regard. They undoubtedly have the talent to win the Championship too, and will need a string of their star players to rise if they are to take the series to a third game. Abraham Solano’s attacking prowess will be crucial to Craigieburn’s chances of redemption, while Dean Ollerenshaw’s transition across the court will also be pivotal. It’s sure to be an absolutely enormous Grand Final weekend, with the prospect of a third game very possible indeed. A third game (if required) would take place at Craigieburn Sports Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Craigieburn vs Collingwood — Sat 6pm — Craigieburn Sports Stadium
Craigieburn vs Collingwood — Sun 12pm — Craigieburn Sports Stadium (if required)
Youth League Two Women
Grand Final weekend is approaching once more as Frankston host Sherbooke, with a definitive Champion set to be crowned by the end of the weekend. The Blues would be confident heading into game two after a polished and impressive display in game one of their three-game Grand Final series last weekend. Defeating the Suns by 16 points, Frankston showed why they found themselves at the top of the ladder at the end of the season – and why they have won 17 consecutive games. Led by the likes of Tori Jackson and Kassie Boorer, the Blues showed their class as they prevailed in a strong display. Boorer has averaged over 15 points per game this season, and could be the key to the Blues’ chances of putting this series to bed in the second game. Playing away from home will certainly pose its challenges for Sherbrooke, but they are more than capable of being able to produce the goods, having been the only team to defeat Frankston this season. Naomi Smith scored 17 points and 14 rebounds in Saturday’s loss, and will need to show more of the same if the Suns are capable of taking the series to a third game. Smith has averaged 17.2 points per game this season, and could be the catalyst for a Suns’ resurgence in game two. An exciting second game looms with the two powerhouse teams of the season. The third game (if required) will again take place at Frankston Basketball Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Frankston vs Sherbrooke — Sat 7.30pm — Frankston Basketball Stadium
Frankston vs Sherbrooke — Sun 1pm — Frankston Basketball Stadium (if required)