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Nunawading Tournament Team Reports

NUNAWADING TOURNAMENT 2017 – TEAM REPORTS

BOYS:

14/2

The Under 14-2 Boys team had a fantastic tournament, with all the boys playing. That was an achievement in itself given that we’d also played the Adelaide tournament – this group of boys are keen to play basketball and their parents are great for helping them to do it!

We started the tournament with a shocker, losing to Diamond Valley 4 in an early morning game. We last played them in the Eltham tournament and beat them in an overtime thriller. It’s fair to say that this game wasn’t thrilling at all and we just failed to fire while Diamond Valley played with great intensity. Morning games just don’t work for this team, with several boys arriving at the game looking like they were fresh out of bed. I left that game wondering what the weekend had install for us, but it didn’t’ take long for things to turn around.

In the second game we had a good win over a slightly under-manned team from Kingston. It was good to get our confidence up and also roll out our new “corner” offence starter that we had learned during the week which yielded great results. As with most of our games we had an fairly even spread of scorers, but it was great to see Tom Hurt playing with confidence and slicing through the opposition offence – he led the scorers alongside Liam Visser. Alex Noblet also did a great job marshalling the offence and unloading some long passes on the fast break. Ari showed great touch with some nice back handed bounce passes in traffic which he used to great effect through the tournament

On the Saturday night we played Warrandyte. They had put some good results on the board and beat us earlier in the VJBL season. We played with great intensity to beat them 33-21. Not a shoot out, but our defence was excellent and we were well led by our twin towers Zac Bowser, who was a monster on the boards and screening, and Charlie Quartel, who went head to head with the opposition teams tall players and reaped the rewards of moving without the ball in offence. Charlie and Alex were prominent in offence while Fin Hansen showed great determination diving for a loose ball and smashed his knuckles which put him out of a few games, but he re-appeared later in the tournament.

Next we played Waverley 5. They were having a tough tournament and we were chasing percentage to try and make the finals. The boys were challenged to maintain focus for the whole game and they did this to run out winners 65-11. We played great team basketball and Fraser Truscott (the birthday boy), Charlie and Sid led the scorers.

The final pool game saw us up against Werribee 3 in a must win game. Like Diamond Valley we last played them in the Eltham tournament, but there was a lot of feeling with this game and our boys handled themselves well as the oppositions frustration grew in accordance with the lead we were building. We ended up winning 33-23, with another very even contribution from all of the boys. What was becoming clear is that when we play as a team, nail the extra passes and keep the movement up in offence we are very tough to match up against. We were in good form, and once the head to head results came through we found out that we were playing in the finals.

While we finished on top of our grade we were relegated to second based on the head to head results by a mere 1 point. Regardless, we were up against a team from Sydney who were keen to have a big win on the road after they finished on top of their pool. What they didn’t count on was an in-form Dragons team that showed great hustle and intensity while sticking to our game plan. Liam again led the scorers, with Sid not too far behind, but Zac Bowser got things going our way early with some important rebounding while Ari nailed a great jump shot when the game was starting to turn Sydney’s way. We ended up with a comfortable 43-22 win, but the game was a better contest than the score-line indicated. This was a great finish to Fraser’s birthday and we were headed for the grand final.

As it turns out, we got to play Warrandyte in the grand final. Both teams entered the game with confidence, and from the tip off it was clear that this was going to be a high intensity game. While we missed a few early shots that we could have made, Warrandyte made the most of their chances and pushed out to an early 9-2 lead. We were under pressure from early in the game. Fortunately, we were able to show some nice composure to slowly reduce the margin, but we could never quite get ahead of Warrandyte. There were a few times when it was looking like we had the game going our way but Warrandyte was able to hit the important shots and in the end that was the difference. We went down 24-30. The grand final was an excellent experience for us as it was played at a fast pace in front of a loud crowd. Hopefully that puts in in good stead for the rest of the season.

All told, we had a great weekend and we’re looking forward to the rest of the season. Many thanks to our team manager Alison Visser who kept us on track throughout the weekend, and to all of the parents who got their kids to the games when they could have been at home celebrating our Queen’s birthday (Dirk Quartel – coach).

14/31

14 boys 31 (combined team) entered into B1 for the tournament which promised to be a tough challenge for the weekend. We ended up having a successful tournament exceeding the expectations of optimistic coaches.

Saturday started off with a low scoring game against Dandenong 3 as both teams struggled to finish inside. Harry came up with a couple of big shots on his birthday (happy birthday Haz!) as we won 20-17 to begin the tournament. We then had 2 close losses against Keilor 2 & 3 before finishing up the day with a 9 point win over Knox 3.

On Sunday the boys worked together well and individually all played their best 3 games of the entire year. Our pools games were finished off with a 20 point win over Woodville and a 15 point win over Latrobe. Given Latrobe are currently 3rd in met 2 this was an unbelievable effort! We then won our semi final by 15 over another met 2 team in Keilor 2. Jared played great defence in these key wins locking down players that had troubled the 1s in the past.

We had our grand final on Monday against Keilor 3. They got the jump on us early leading by double digits. The boys fought back late but unfortunately went down by 2 points. Shoutout to Liam for getting the MVP award despite the loss.

Michael & I are really proud of all the boys for how well they played all weekend. The 3s boys especially all stood up and played incredibly well against teams 3 or 4 pools higher than them on a Friday night. Thanks to all the parents for your support over a long 8 game weekend! (David Rooke – co coach).

16/5

The boys were placed in a higher grade to use the tournament to extend them and develop individual skills and team plays under pressure.

They certainly got more pressure playing teams 2 and 3 grades above them on Friday nights.

They had some amazing wins, in particular beating a Nunawading team 3 grades higher on Friday nights to get into the Grand Final.

Whilst they went on to lose the Grand Final, they all achieved individual goals set putting them in a great position to finish the season strong and ultimately play finals.

Great tournament, very proud coach (Colleen Cross)

16/6

The U16-6 Boys had a good tournament, going down in the semi’s by 1 point in extra time.

They started reasonably well on Saturday with a first up win by 4 points against an unknown opposition in Devils Mitchell, then went down to Eltham 8 by only 7 with a solid performance in the next (Eltham beat them by 36 in Rd1 of Rep) – a game of missed opportunities. In the late game on Saturday the boys played a very tired game to lose to Warrandyte 5 by 6 – many turnovers, a lack of concentration & poor shooting; their worst game for the weekend. But then Sunday came and they turned up with renewed vigor, having a strong 20 point win against Sherbrooke 3 to keep their finals hopes alive.  A solid 4 point win against Dandenong Ranges 7 in the quarter finals saw them into the semi-finals. Unfortunately the weekend was taking its toll physically and we lost Jack Nenos for the semi with a thigh injury. The semi was up against Warrandyte 5 again and the boys started very well. However, Warrandyte pegged us back late in the 1st half with a number of consecutive baskets by their “tall” (who looked far more U18 than U16 and was a handful for our lighter weights when Ben was off the court). The game became a tough physical battle in the second half, which saw us even at full time. Extra time saw Warrandyte score a 3 early (the only 3 for the whole game) and it then became a struggle for either team to score. Ben put in 2 free throws to have us down by only 1 point but the clock eventually beat us, losing 32-33. The 3 games on Sunday produced elements of some of the best basketball the boys have played all year, both defensively, being so much more aggressive, and offensively, particularly the ball movement and team play. While a 1 point loss in a final is always hard to take, the boys should be proud of their performance.

The challenge now is to bring those good aspects of the weekends games together on Friday nights (Mike Wardlaw – coach).

16 “JEFFERS”

Nine of our bottom age boys from across the U16.1/2/3’s teams competed hard at last weekend’s Nunawading Tournament but ultimately fell 3 points short of taking out the title.

Despite coming from 3 different teams the boys worked well together and played hard at both ends of the floor.

They went 5-1 through the preliminary rounds, beat the Hills Hornets (NSW) in the semi before facing North Sydney Bears in the Final.

In a tight and tense game from start to finish, the Dragons boys found it hard to make shots against a very effective zone.

In the end too many turnovers and below average free throw shooting cost them the win with 3 points being the difference as time expired.

All the boys will be better for the experience of the 8 games, a big thank you to Mark Jeffers and Matt Foster for their coaching and enthusiasm over the weekend (Andrew Noisette – TM).

18/1

Boys 18-1s played in A grade and finished up with 2 wins and 4 losses. Of the 4 losses 3 were very close and whilst we didn’t get the result, I was happy with how we played as a team and feel as though we are in good stead going forward with the season. A quality team effort across the weekend. Thanks to all players and parents for their efforts (Pete Maunder – coach).

18/2

Boys 18-2 had a successful tournament playing some very good quality basketball finishing with a record 3 wins 2 losses and a nail biting draw. The team made the semi final but unfortunately lost to a very strong Melbourne tigers team. Overall it was a very rewarding weekend with some great basketball and even better off court bonding (Luke Bett – coach).

18/4

Going into this tournament we were already short handed, down to a roster of seven the boys knew it would be a challenge, they were prepared both mentally and physically for the tough weekend to come but did not disappoint.

After showcasing their display of skill and team oriented style of play we were in full form to start the tournament knocking off Blackburn and Sherbrooke to take an 2-0 lead, facing south adelaide next we didn’t slow down at all putting up 64 points in total with a 45 point second half to see us go 3-0.

Facing north Adelaide we continued our run by making it 4-0 making us the team to beat,

To finish off the pool we came up against craigieburn and played our best game of the tournament putting up 65 points in an all around team win.

Finishing undefeated in our pool we came up against another Adelaide team they came at us hard while buried in a zone we couldn’t get into our rhythm and struggled to play our game, despite that it was neck and neck the whole way down to the last couple of seconds to unfortunately loss by three points in the end.

Even though an early exit the boys played some terrific basketball and continued to play as a team and we look to take what we did this tournament and add it to our already successful year  (Jarrod Whelan – coach).

 

GIRLS:

12/1

The G12 (1) team set up camp for the weekend at the Kilsyth Sports Complex with all 5 round robin games played there. We got off to a great start winning two of our three games on the Saturday. On Sunday we came up against two of the stronger teams and although losing – one of the games to the eventual winner – we were definitely competitive.

We finished our pool in 4th spot which saw us progress to the semi-finals but it meant playing Werribee who were number one, and the eventual winners. That was where it ended for us but the weekend was definitely worth it.

Thanks to the parents and grandparents who carpooled to drive the girls around, watched over all the team between games, those who opened their houses to sleepovers and double sleepovers, scored, cheered and made the weekend fun and social for not only the girls but parents as well.

Lastly a big thankyou to Prue our coach. You are so supportive and patient with the girls, delivering feedback always in such a positive way. We really value the time and effort that you devote to the girls (Natalie Hood – Team Manager).

Go Dragons!!

12/3

As it happens like the season proper the girls are learning some hard and important lessons early in their rep career. Drawing in one of their 6 games and losing five, they came up against mostly stronger opposition that left their coach thinking that some of the other teams had come to win a trophy rather than gain from the overall experience. Regardless of the outcome on the scoreboard the girls fought very hard to compete well and produced defensive structure that tested most of the teams most of the time. Unfortunately, having good skill in offense didn’t pay off as much as the girls would have liked. Shots went up plenty but not enough confidently to nail a victory. The girls continue to learn the vital ingredient in all victories is team work. There were some great moments of team work during all games. Each player throughout the tournament stepped up in themselves, and did their very best in every game to play as a team player. Well done girls, you should all be proud of the effort and determination you put in over the weekend. This will lead you all forward in the future to being stronger and more sportswomenlike basketballers! (Dana B-P – coach).

14/2

The 14-2 girls entered the tournament looking for a competitive, but slightly easier Nunawading tournament, after a tough start to the Metro 4 season.

On reviewing our pool we were then surprised to find two metro 3 teams, a South Australian team from a high division, and another metro4 team with a slightly better season record than us. This was furthered hampered by the unavailability of two key players, one through travel and the other with illness, and with a third playing, who was still unwell.

Zoe Johnson from the 14-3’s filled in (with aplomb) and we took the court with a determined bottom age team.

After a tougher than expected win against the only lower graded team in our pool(Blackburn), we stepped up a gear against North Bears, recording a comfortable win with a scintillating display of tough defence and transition basketball.  We followed up with a tight win over fellow Metro 4 team Nunawading 4, despite a significant height disadvantage, showing great determination on the boards, and running “Dragon” offence successfully to cut the Nunawading defence to ribbons, whilst profiting from our short corner specialist Ciara.

On Sunday we met Metro 3 team Hawthorn 4, who again were much bigger, and also undefeated. After a close start to the game, Hawthorn stepped up a gear, and with aggressive defence pulled away for a solid win. In the final pool game we met Frankston 3, another metro 3 team. We tried a new press, and it worked very successfully as we repeatedly put their ball carrier under pressure and forced turnovers. They gradually edged back into the game and then ahead of us, profiting from extra size, however we did not give in and continued to apply pressure, forcing key turnovers to record an impressive win and move into the semi-finals.

In the semi we had a torrid game against a very aggressive Casey 2. They jumped us initially, however we fought back to draw level with 8 seconds remaining, and headed into over-time. This time we edged ahead from the foul line, only for Casey to hit a late shot, and take us to a second period of overtime. Finally, with both teams in the bonus, Casey 2 hit some clutch shots from the foul-line to edge us out.

The girls had a great tournament and can be proud of themselves. Missing our two 3-4 players Alex and Lauren, guards were consistently matching up on players 6 or more inches taller, and this did not phase them at all. Zoe as mentioned above did a great job filling in, and Millie, Leah, Maia, Amelie, Amy, Molly and Ciara were all fantastic throughout the tournament. Thank you to Greg our team manager, and Greg, Mark, and Chris who rotated in the assistant coach hot-seat (Duncan Palmer – coach).

14/5

A successful tournament for the girls u14/5 saw us finish 3rd on the ladder in our pool winning 3 out of our 5 games playing some teams that were graded higher than us in the VJBL competition (and much TALLER than us). The team held on to win in a couple of close games which meant we had to dig deep defensively and offensively to hang on when we were under pressure which showed great character by all players. Some players found their confidence again which meant their individual game play (shooting, intercepting, ball pressure) over the course of tournament lifted to a new level which meant that the overall team performance went up a few notches as well as team members picked up on the up tempo vibe. A genuine team effort throughout the tournament. Congrats girls! (Kerrie Lawrence – coach).


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