New Myrtleford teams rate their chances By JUSTIN JENVEY
BRENDAN Cusack says there is an air of excitement from players ahead of Myrtleford’s first game in the Country Basketball League.
The Saints’ newest men’s and women’s teams will play their first games in the North East competition in a home double header against Wallan and Wodonga on October 21 and 22.
Cusack, one of the men’s players and a key driver in initiating Myrtleford’s push into the competition said both teams were dreaming big ahead of their first outing.
“All of us are really keen and that excitement has grown into a real confidence,” he said.
“When we originally started talking about entering the competition we knew there was plenty of potential but now that both squads are finalised I think other teams will be jealous of the calibre of players we have.
“We have so much depth in both the men’s and women’s teams that I think we are going to give it a redhot crack.”
There will be a mix of experience and youth in both sides with Ben McIntyre and Wandiligong youngster Jalen Barker set to be focal points for the men and for the women Rebecca Piazza and Paige Zamperoni will lead the way.
Cusack said every player had fully committed to the cause and Les Stevens had been outstanding as coach of both teams.
“It’s what I hoped would happen but not what I thought would happen, every player has gone all in,” he said.
“Matt Dyball for example was a bit hesitant for a start but hasn’t missed a training session and is even doing stuff outside of our practices.
“The job Les has done so far has been amazing, he’s been coaching for such a long time that it’s just second nature to him and the way he relates to players has made things even easier.”
Cusack said training was ramping up with just over two weeks until the season opening tip-off.
“Practice has been intense, we’re training two times a week and lately have just been doing a lot of scrimmaging,” he said.
“The men’s and women’s sides have even been going against each, the young players are pushing the older ones along and vice versa and as a new club that’s been great to build that culture.
“We’ve already poured so much into this and you can see the potential long term, it’s going to take off.”
EXCITING TIMES: Jalen Barker, Racquel Stevens, Rebecca Piazza and Ben Mcintyre have been putting in the hard yards ahead of the Myrtleford’s first CBL campaign.