Redbacks well on track
THE coaches of the Perth Redbacks' men's and women's teams are pleased with the progress of their respectives sides this season.
THE season might be over for the Perth Redbacks but the men’s and women’s team coaches are pleased with the progress of their respective sides.
Both teams had improved seasons, finishing 7th in the regular season after missing out on the play-offs during the 2015 season, bu losses in the quarter-finals saw their seasons come to a halt.
Men’s coach Nik Lackovic said it was a positive and enjoyable season as the team rose from 11th in 2015 to achieve a play-off appearance.
“It was our goal to make the play-offs and although we were disappointed to lose in the first round, it was against a high-quality team,” he said.
“We established ourselves as a top team and gained the respect of the rest of the league.
“Players such as Ben Smith shone at the shooting guard position, Michael Vigor showed that he is one of the elite big men in the league, while our import Jourdan Demuynck was tremendous.”
Lackovic said a lack of injuries and disruptions helped the team improve after missing the playoffs last season.
“The team was committed to each other and proved themselves to be very coachable,” he said.
“There was also a blend of experience and youth with a lot of the young guys getting some time on the court.
“We will look to build on what we have established next season, I don’t think we need to change much.”
Women’s coach Keith Horwood said the introduction of new players and the improvement of existing players propelled the team up the ladder.
“Recruits such as Rebecca Benson, Lisa Wallbutton, Ajay Jones and Bianca Donovan were all standouts,” he said.
“Some of our strengths this season included our three-point shooting, and our ability to score in the paint.
“I felt like we lost a couple of close games that would have meant that we would have finished higher on the ladder and not met the defending champions Rockingham.”
Horwood said he would find out in the next few weeks whether he would coach next season.
“I’m really proud about how the team played this season and I think they can continue to improve next year,” he said.
Michael Vigor slam dunks.
Ajay Jones in action.