From Co-Captains of Basketball, Luca Zanarini & James Foster
This week was the first week of basketball for the new Year 7’s. Up against a great opposition like Knox, they 7A’s discovered first-hand the competition they would face for the coming years. The boys played well and put in a great effort despite their loss and should be happy with the progress they’ve made in the short amount of time playing with each other. The 8A’s was a close game as both teams played well, however Knox was able to capatalize at the last moment and Waverley lost by 2. The 9A’s struggled to keep up with Knox as the boys couldn’t stay composed and despite the great effort they put in all game, they eventually lost by 20. The 10A’s also put up a good fight, however lost by 10 points
After learning from the CAS Blitz, the 2nd V were energised and continued their preparation for the opening round of CAS competition for 2018 vs Knox. The 2nd V came out strong from the opening tip. Some nice ball movement and well executed play allowed easy opening baskets for Mark Goncalves, as he ran up the score early in the first half. Some impressive defence from tom Joey Lyons and Tom Deakin-Bell created multiple offensive fast breaks. The 2nd V offence was on display for the rest of the first half with a number of back to back layups by Daniel Marando and jump shots from Mark Goncalves. However, while Knox began to regain control, Nathan Papageorgious lead a comeback charge, reducing the gap to just two points at the end of the first half 21-23.
Some main talking points during the half time break were shot selection, defensive rotations and most importantly communication as a team. The 2nd half proved to be an even contest. Knox ran a different pick and roll set that left the 2nd V scrambling to cover the gaps which Knox attacked. The 2nd V put together a run, through some strong post moves from Ash Backlund, which left Knox flustered and out of tune, resulting in multiple timeouts being called. The game continued to be neck and neck throughout the remaining minutes of the game.
With 4 minutes left to play, the lead changed an absurd number of times and the scene was set for a thrilling ending. As time wound down to the final two minutes of the game, Daniel Marando and Heath Lawther were able to force a steal that would eventuate into a driving layup by Daniel Callaghan, however the 2nd V could not capitalise on their next two possessions. As a result, Waverley had to call a timeout to settle their nerves and regather composure.
With a 1:21 left in the game, Waverly inbounded the ball, however struggled to find any signs of an offence. Trailing by 2 points, with 5 seconds left on the shot clock, Mark Goncalves pulled a corner three that resulted in Waverley taking the lead as the shot clock expired. Unfortunately, Knox answered back with two threes of their own and kept Waverley scoreless for the remainder of the game with the final score 41-38. The 2nd V had a lot of positives to take from this game as they move forward for the remainder of the season.
After a successful CAS blitz, the 1st V was looking for a win in their first game back against a strong Knox side. After being able to pull out a win against Knox at home in the first half of the season, the boys were looking to replicate that with a good start. After making the long drive down to Knox, the boys got themselves ready and began a warm up just before the game.
With both teams ready, the ball was tipped and Waverley got possession. A quick few baskets by Kyle Goulding and Hayden Walton helped fire the Waverley team up and gave us a strong lead. However, some bad defensive rotation allowed Knox to take advantage and keep the game level. The game became physical and tempers flew as there were foul calls left, right and centre. Unfortunately, this lead to some unfortunate consequences and Alex Higgins-Titsha would miss the rest of the game.
Although they struggled, the 1st V boys kept pushing and did well, running through their plays, some of which they would run for the first time. This allowed us to regain control of the game, however some quick turnovers led Knox to be up by 2 points at the end of the first quarter. Going into the second quarter, the boys knew they had to pick up the intensity to match what they started with. Although the quarter was off to a slow start with both teams missing opportunities, Waverley’s aggression kicked in, as Luca Zanarini scored a layup and Kyle Goulding’s back to back shots fired the boys up, allowing Waverley to get some much needed points. Unfortunately, Waverley committed a lot of fouls which enabled Knox to maintain their lead as the score was 43-41 at half time.
With the majority of the team in foul trouble, the second half was crucial if Waverley wanted to take the lead. A quick basket from Jeremy Petritsis sparked Waverley to fight for the ball and led to a steal in the next possession. Unfortunately, the fouls affected Waverley’s ability to get back, however Ryan Abbott caught heat and hit important 3 point shots to narrow the score back to 4 points as Waverley trailed going into the last quarter. Getting into the 4th quarter, the Knox team kept their momentum as each side scored after each other. Although at times Waverley’s defensive presence helped, the Knox side kept drawing fouls, eventually fouling out 2 Waverley players. Waverley lost control of the game, as Knox fired up and scored continuous shots, putting them up by 10. Waverley made one last push, trying to capitalize on some fast breaks, however unfortunately could not catch up and lost 80-70. Kyle Goulding had 21 points along with 6 assists. This game was very disappointing for the 1st V to lose as it would jeopardise their chances of winning the CAS, however this has also provided some determination for the boys not to drop off now, work on perfecting their game and committing less fouls against their next opponent St Aloysius.
From Mr Gibbs, Convenor of Basketball
The 2nd V began the second half of the CAS season on 2 wins and were looking to replicate their last effort against Knox, having won that first-round fixture 41-38. The second-round matchup was close the entire game and the atmosphere was tense as neither team could break away from the other. The score seesawed throughout, however Knox ultimately prevailed 41-38, having led 23-21 at half-time. Best on-court were Stephen Morrissey, Daniel Marando and Tom Deakin-Bell.
Having beaten Knox 66-62 in their first-round encounter, the 1st V were confident going into this week’s fixture. The return of Alex Higgins-Titsha from injury, who had missed the entire first five rounds, also lifted the team’s spirits. The 1st V started extremely well, with high-intensity basketball from the Waverley players, who were able to make some quality baskets. However, a major setback occurred when Alex Higgins-Titsha had to leave the game, taking no further part. The first quarter closed out with Knox ahead 22-20. The 1st V continued to show commitment and purpose in the second half, however the foul count began to take its toll, gifting easy points to Knox at the free-throw line. The half-time break saw the score even at 43-all, however several Waverley players were in foul trouble and had to sit out for lengthy periods of time. Despite the 1st V not letting up, Knox began to pull away in the third quarter, going into the final break leading 61-56. With Waverley continuing to get into foul trouble and Knox only too happy to oblige by making easy free-throws, the 1st V were unable to stage a comeback, eventually losing 80-70. The 1st V now sit third in the competition on 3 wins and 3 losses. Best on-court were Ryan Abbott, Kyle Goulding and Luca Zanarini. Both teams will want to turn their fortunes around this weekend and get their seasons back on track when they face St Aloysius, who they lost to in close games in their first-round fixtures.
In other games, Waverley enjoyed limited success against Knox, who were very strong across all age groups. The following teams were able to seal wins: 8B (34-23), 8C (36-23), 8D (30-23), 7B (32-24), 7C (28-21), 7D (38-7) with the 9B’s drawing 25-all. The 6th V (24-19), 10D (34-28), 9G (24-20), 8A (46-43), 7E (20-17) played well despite losing very close games. Welcome to all our new Year 7 players, who showed great promise in their first games for the College against Knox.
The Basketball Supporters Club is seeking help in staffing the BBQ this Saturday. If you are able to assist for an hour, please contact Mrs Sophia Hatziandreou at email@example.com.
Waverley Basketball is now using Team App to publish information such as scores, news, fixtures, team lists and announcements. Download the app and search for ‘Waverley College Basketball’ to receive notifications and updates.
Good luck to all teams against St Aloysius this weekend.