FROM THE GEELONG ADVERTISER – 4 Jun 2018 written by WILL HOGAN
GEELONG Supercats coach Leon O’Neill has put Saturday night’s 87-96 loss to the Frankston Blues down to a poor mentality on the court.
O’Neill conceded his side was not “switched on” and described the first half as “unacceptable”, with the Supercats’ slow start gifting Frankston just its second win of the season.
“It’s just not coming to play again. It’s the same old story — the same thing happened against North West Tasmania,” O’Neill said.
“When we’re not switched on and when we’re not ready to play, then we’re very ordinary.
“We had lacklustre attention to detail, we weren’t aggressive defensively and they got off to a really good start because they were prepared to play.
“They looked like a team with finals aspirations. We looked liked a team just going through the motions in the first half and the scoreboard reflected that.” Frankston got off to a terrific offensive start, putting up 28 points in both quarters to lead by 20 points at half-time.
American Sam Muldrow led the first-half surge for Frankston, with O’Neill praising the import’s attributes.
Muldrow reached a tripledouble by the end of the game with a stunning 10 blocks to go with his 17 points and 11 rebounds.
“If there are NBL teams looking for a third import, then he’s (Muldrow) someone they should definitely check out,” O’Neill said. “He can stretch the court, he can shoot the three and certainly protects the rim well.”
Despite Frankston’s early dominance, the Supercats reeled in the margin thanks to a commendable third-quarter fightback, helping them get within five points with three minutes to go in the last.
But the Supercats’ efforts getting back in the contest took its toll, with Frankston able to control the last few minutes to finish nine-point victors.
“The message at half-time was very blunt, very sharp and specific: let’s play with some heart and let’s worry about playing with the jumper kind of stuff,” O’Neill said.
“We had to use up so much energy just to get back to that point. Frankston, to their credit, were able to steady and see out the game.”