Big V Review – Round 3
DIVISION 1 MEN
V’s MELBOURNE UNIVERSITY BLACK ANGELS (SATURDAY)
V’s WARRNAMBOOL SEAHAWKS (SUNDAY)
The Luina Geelong Supercats Division 1 Men finally opened their 2018 wins column on Saturday night in one of the more bizzare finishes to a game of basketball in recent times.
With just 30 seconds left on the match clock in the last quarter and the Supercats holding a 7 point lead over the Black Angels, the fire alarm began sounding in the Melbourne University Sports Complex and the players having to vacate the stadium.
After more than an hours delay before the building was able to be re-entered, it was agreed that with Jacob Pupavac about to head to the free throw line, a home win was unlikely and the points were awarded to the Supercats to give them their first win of the season.
Prior to the evacuation, the game had been a close one with the Supercats holding the upper hand for the majority of the match through the scoring dominance of Lewie Varley (29 points) with good support from Marko Vekic who continues on his upward path with 18 points and 13 boards, ranking as one of his best games in his short time in Big V Competition.
As expected, Nick Masunda was the key to the Black Angels’ side, contributing 21 points to be the leading scorer for his side but it wasn’t enough to get his side across the line.
Sunday’s game against old rivals the Warrnambool Seahawks was always going to be a tough ask for the relatively inexperienced Geelong side and early doors it looked like climbing Mt Everest may have been an easier proposition as the Seaahawks were ruthless in establishing a big 20 point break at the first break.
Import Xavier Blount and former Supercat Alex Gynes took a liking to the new rings and were almost scoring at will and then Coach Tim Gainey introduced perimeter shooter Oliver Bidmade to instant effect.
The Supercat machine began to find some steam in the second term but still found themselves down by 18 points at the main break and in the half time break, Coach Brenton O’Brien challenged his team to fight back rather than conceding and wanted to be within 10 points at the last break.
His address worked as the Supercats came out all guns firing in the third term to put together a 25 to 14 quarter to stun the visitors, cutting their lead to just 7 points at the last break and show that they weren’t going to leave with the points as easily as they may have initially though.
With Lewie Varley missing through a thumb injury the night before, there was aa need for someone to step into the breach and provide an additional scoring option for the Supercats.
Captain, Emerson Varley was doing his part, leading by experience and it was Vekic who joined his leader to shoulder a lot of the scoring load, adding to his previous nights 18 with a further 17 points on Sunday to go with 14 boards.
These two also got fine support from rookie Kyle Meyer who chimed in with 19 points of his own.
In the end it was just the experience of Gynes, Blount and Gainey, who were able to come up with a scoring opportunity just when the young Supercats looked like they were about to run over them, that was the difference in the end.
LUINA GEELONG SUPERCATS: 79 (Lewie Varley 29 Marko Vekic 18, Billy Feben 10)
MELBOURNE UNI: 72 (Nick Masunda 21, Jack Railton-Woodcock 16, Brandon Armstrong 15)
LUINA GEELONG SUPERCATS: 80 (Emerson Varley 24, Kyle Meyer 19, Marko Vekic 17)
WARRNAMBOOL SEAHAWKS: 88 (Xavier Blount 26, Oliver Bidmade 21, Alex Gynes 15)
DIVISION 1 WOMEN
v WARRNAMBOOL MERMAIDS
Our Division 1 Women also joined the winners list for the first time in 2018 with a solid win against the Mermaids by 6 points on Sunday.
With Tess Feery back in court for the Supercats, they looked a much sharper outfit, with more defensive and offensive hustle, turning half chances into successful chances on a number of occasions.
Caitlin Shadbolt was also in nice touch, giving Geelong a good solid target under the bucket and also from the perimeter on a number of occasions.
Former Supercat Amy Wormald was well held for most of the match, finishing with 16 points for the day, however didn’t have much of an impact on the contest.
A late comeback from the Mermaids threatened to upset the storyline into the last quarter, however, the wiser heads were with the Supercats as they were able to steady and get across the line.
LUINA GEELONG SUPERCATS: 60 (Caitlin Shadbolt 16, Tess Feery 12)
WARRNAMBOOL MERMAIDS: 92 (Amy Wormald 16, Alana Strom 13)
YOUTH LEAGUE 1 MEN
v WERRIBEE DEVILS
It was a case of “close, but no cigar” for our Youth League Men as they fell just short of toppling one of their bogey teams in recent years.
Despite being neck and neck down the straight, the Devils just got the win by the bob of the head.
Josiah King was the stand out performer for the Supercats, finishing with 23 points and 15 boards for the match, getting good support from Wang Nyieth (15 and 12), Tom Georgiadis (11 points) and Jack Dunstan (10 points).
Leading scorer for the Supercats in the opening weeks, Josh Hindle was kept pretty quite by the Devils and was restricted to just 8 points for the game.
Our Youth League Men are beginning to show a developing maturity that has been a little missing in recent years, where if their main scoring route is shut down they struggle to score but this year things appear to be changing based on Sunday’s contest where the ‘usual suspects’ were kept quiet by their opponents.
LUINA GEELONG SUPERCATS: 91 (Josiah King 23, Wang Nyieth 15, Tom Georgiadis 11)
WERRIBEE DEVILS: 94 (Daniaell Herbert 23, Jake Karcoushkas 16, Joshua Zamperoni 11 )
YOUTH LEAGUE 1 WOMEN
v SUNBURY JETS
2018 has started to resemble a bit of a ‘big dipper’ ride for our Youth League Women, up one week, down the next.
On Saturday afternoon, it was back to the ‘dip’ lowering their colours to the Sunbury Jets by 13 points at The Arena.
Once again it was a case of too much left to too few with Carly Sanders (17 points) and Amy Troy (12 points) left to shoulder the bulk of the score. In fact, the two were responsible for 50% of the Supercats total between the two of them.
In a scrappy contest, neither side shot the ball well with Sunbury going at 30% from the field compared to the Supercats 26%.
The difference between the two teams’ scoring spread was stark as besides Sanders and Troy, only 5 other Supercats troubled the score sheet and whilst only one Jet in Mikayla Aquilina got to double figures another 8 Jets contributed to their team’s score.
One of the only wins the Supercats managed for the day was on the glass, out rebounding the Jets 51 to 36.
LUINA GEELONG SUPERCATS: 46 (Carly Sanders 17, Amy Troy 12)
SUNBURY JETS: 59 (Mikayla Aquilina 14)
BIG V PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
This weeks POTW is Marko Vekic from the Division 1 Mens side who showed his talent with a breakout weekend contributing 18 and 13 in their opening win of the season and then backed up on Sunday to help drag his side back into the contest with 17 and 14.
Congratulations and keep up the good work Marko!