Juniors, maxis set for big finals showdown
BASKETBALL: Hurricanes and Devils face each other in the junior basketball grand final tomorrow night. This should be a great game as these teams finished one and two at the end of the regular season.
Devils won the major semi-final two weeks ago but Hurricanes won a close preliminary final last Friday night to give them another shot at Devils.
The fairytale story of the Maxis competition is the Panthers who have come from nowhere to book their spot in the grand final against the high-flying Crocodiles.
Panthers finished in fourth spot at the regular season and have defeated the two teams above them to reach the big game – but have they got enough left in the tank to challenge Crocodiles?
This is a classic David and Goliath match up – Panthers will need to be at their best, but they are full of confidence and should have little fear considering what they have achieved over the last two weeks – should be a classic encounter.
Don’t forget the all-important end of season player awards which will be presented after the maxis’ grand final game.
There are a number of players who are not playing in the grand final who are up for these awards so please come along and watch the grand finals and enjoy the end of season break-up.
Free sausage sizzle will also be provided.
■ 5.15pm Hurricanes v Devils, refs Lisa and Jacqueline;
■ 6pm Crocodiles v Panthers, refs Michael and Lisa.
Harry Whitaker: Wonderful ball skills and great in both defence and attack, a key player for Hurricanes.
■ Alyssa Burgess: Strong defender who is not afraid to challenge bigger opponents for the ball, has a handy shot as well.
■ Kyle McCarthy: Leading point scorer in the comp and his team need him to continue that trend on
■ Mikaela Mayne: Works hard off the ball and capable defensive rebounder, a couple of turnovers will really help Hurricanes’ chances.
■ Daniel Ricca: Big improver this season who has benefited from the extra training sessions, can score buckets and rebounds well.
■ Aneka Irwin: New to basketball but keen to learn about the game, works hard for the team when on the court.
■ Coach Justin Wheatley: Experienced basketballer who is keen to pass on his knowledge to his players and he has enjoyed his role this season.
■ Luke Muir: Has good vision and knows what he wants to do with the ball before he gets it. He is capable of scoring plenty of points and is a key player.
■ Brooke O’Brien: Second leading points scorer in the competition and she’s not afraid to mix it with the boys. Brook is vital to Devils’ success.
■ Anthony Pearce: Has the skills and knowledge to have a major impact in the result. If he clicks into gear Hurricanes will have to work hard to shut him down.
■ Isaac Hall: Keen defender who’s defensive skills will be needed to keep hurricanes at bay.
■ Ashley O’Brien: Hard working and fit defensive player, every shot she stops is one less her team-mates have to score.
■ Jack Lewis: Injured and his whole round game performance will be missed.
■ Coach Michael O’Brien: Veteran Stanthorpe basketballer who knows what it takes to win a grand final – he will have his team prepared.
■ Kirby Morunga: Big strong rebounder who loves to drop a three-pointer every now and again and hard to hold out.
■ Brody Pearce:
Experienced player who should have a big influence on the game and has a great passing game.
■ Ky Rashliegh: All round and experienced player who is unstoppable at his best
■ Harry Williams: Strong in both defensive and offence rebounds, he’s fast on the breaks which Panthers will have to watch.
■ Jack Watson: Tends to stay back in defence to diffuse any opposition quick transitional breaks. He will not score many buckets but will block a few.
■ Coach Jon Watson: New to Stanthorpe basketball this year, keen to coach and to help players better understand the game.
■ Landon Gempton: Skilful player with good vision and a strong passing game. Panthers need him to be at his best.
■ Gabe Mayne: Big improver in the comp, works hard at both ends of the court and can score points when needed.
■ Dylan Lihou: Runs all game and is keen to be involved in the rebound challenges and will have a heavy influence on the game.
■ Tristan Smith: Passionate basketballer who practised a lot in his spare time, can score when needed and sets up team mates well.
■ Dan Davies: Gets himself in good positions to score points which is vital to Panthers chances and needs to put all opportunities away Friday night.
■ William Wenban: Team player who puts in every time he takes the court. He would love to help his team to victory on Friday night.
■ Coach Cole Harris: Stepped up to help the comp this year. A knowledgeable coach who has taken his team all the way to the big game and will be instrumental in Panthers’ chances.
FINALE: Junior basketball finals will take place tomorrow night.