Runners up in State Championships
The Yarrawonga Mulwala Basketball Association’s (YMBA) Under 14 Girls Representative team were runners up in the U14 Division 4 Grand Final on the weekend.
The championships were played in Ballarat over three days, with teams from all over country Victoria competing for titles in four divisions.
The YMBA girls came up against Shepparton, Wonthaggi, Sale, Melton, Churchill and Colac in the qualifying matches and narrowly missed out on a division 3 berth by a small percentage margin.
With a division four position, coaches Mark Chapman and Amanda Wheaton knew the girls were playing well enough to push for finals contention. Allanah Harrap unfortunately suffered an achilles injury which left the team one player down for finals, but the team of Georgie Hemphill, Eliana Martin, Savannah Wallden, Jemma Adkins, Abbey Coghill, Chloe Wheaton, Brodie Chapman and Allanah supporting on the bench, blew the Western Port Stealers out of the water in the Quarter Final at 8am on Sunday, and won this game 34-11.
They then met the Warragul Warriors in the semi-final and the girls had their work cut out for them against some tough opposition. The Laker girls played an outstanding game though, with it being the game of the weekend to watch. With tight defensive pressure, accurate passing, accurate shooting and exceptional teamwork, the girls showcased everything they had been working on for eight months to win 43-19 and secure a place in the grand-final.
The grand-final against Moe was close from the outset, with both teams head to head on the scoreboard throughout the game. Eliana Martin used her height to the team’s advantage, pulling in rebounds and posting up strongly. She was well supported by Brodie Chapman, Chloe Wheaton and Abbey Coghill who all worked tirelessly in both offence and defence all game.
The team’s defensive specialist, Georgie Hemphill, was relentless in her tagging role and shut down her opponents in defence on many occasions. Savannah Wallden and Jemma Adkins also worked hard all over the court, initiating team plays, intercepting and controlling the play.
Moe were also on song for the final though, with accurate shooting and well-drilled offensive plays which caught the Laker girls out one time too many. In the last quarter, Moe held on to a 6 point lead which the girls just couldn’t peg back and so Moe ended up the victors 36-30.
The girls can hold their heads up high though, as they fought every game to the end and kept playing hard, regardless of the scoreboard.
Coaches Mark and Amanda are extremely proud of how these girls have developed and improved over this rep season with two local tournament grand final wins during the season and this weekend’s state championship runners up medallion to add to their achievements. This is great for the association at a regional and now at a state level. Well done girls.
The YMBA Under 14 Representative side at back: Mark Chapman (coach), Chloe Wheaton, Eliana Martin, Allanah Harrap, Amanda Wheaton (Coach). Middle: Brodie Chapman, Jemma Adkins, Abbey Coghill. Front: Savannah Wallden, Georgie Hemphill.