Captains of Basketball Report
FROM ANGELO DI BARTOLO & DION HATZIANDREOU, CO-CAPTAINS OF BASKETBALL
The Juniors were looking to gain their first win of the season against St Aloysius. Unfortunately, the 10A’s, having lost their big man Fritz Jahnke-Tavana to the 1sts, went down in a disappointing 49-25 loss. The 9A’s and 8A’s fought hard in their games, falling short by less than 10 points 46-39 and 38-35 respectively. It was a tough weekend for the Juniors, but they are looking forward to next week’s matchup against local rivals Cranbrook.
After starting their season off with a record of 1-1, the 2nds looked to having a big game against St Aloysius. The 2nds approached the game with confidence believing that if they gave maximum effort throughout the game they would be able to walk off the court with the win. In the first half, Waverley demonstrated true teamwork, with all team-members contributing to the score sheet. Unfortunately, Waverley trailed by four points to Aloysius after the first half. The second half showed a great shooting performance from Adam Femia scoring two 3 pointers. Adam led Waverley and finished off by scoring Waverley 10 hard earned points. The dynamic big man duo of Ben Walton and Matt Higgins-Titsha combined for a lump sum of 17 points which contributed to majority of the points in the game. Despite this effort, the 2nd V fell short to Aloysius by 1 point. The 2nds fought and are eager to redeem themselves in Round 4 against Cranbrook.
After witnessing their 2nd V team suffer such a close defeat, the Waverley 1st V was eager to get on the court and play St Aloysius. With each team having losing records, the 1st V knew that this was an extremely important game. With both team’s guards opening the scoring by drawing fouls and executing on 1 of 2 free throws, the score was even at 1-1. Both sides struggled to score due to aggressive defence from both teams. Following the initial point scored by Dion Hatziandreou, only 3 Waverlians scored for the remainder of the 1st quarter. Big men Ash Backlund and Ryan Abbott combined for 9 points in the 1st quarter finishing with a score of 12-9 with Waverley up by 3.
In the second quarter, a large number of Waverley players got themselves into foul trouble causing key scorers to be forced to sit on the bench. Angelo Di Bartolo made himself present on the scoresheet in the second quarter by scoring two great 3 pointers, which then inspired Dion Hatziandreou to close the first half with yet another 3 point make.
After a great talk by the Waverley coaches, the third quarter was where Waverley truly left a mark on the St Aloysius 1sts. Point guard Christian Diaz opened the third quarter with a beautiful score off a set play. Throughout the third quarter Waverley displayed brilliant defence, creating steals and stops on what seemed to be nearly every possession. To end the quarter, Dion Hatziandreou scored 8 consecutive points for the Waves and Christian Diaz scored a 3 pointer on the buzzer.
Going into the fourth Waverley was up 51-39, however the game wasn’t finished yet and St Aloysius continued to fight hard. The Waverley boys kept up their defensive intensity into the fourth, keeping the lead for the remainder of the game. The scoring in the fourth was yet again led by Christian Diaz who scored 8 points with two 3 pointers. Ash Backlund and Ryan Abbott, who had been in foul trouble returned to the game combining for 7 points to ensure a Waverley victory. After this great effort Waverley came out on top winning 67-51.
FROM CONVENOR OF BASKETBALL, ANTHONY GIBBS
After a disappointing loss to Knox the previous week, the 2nd V were looking to get their season back on track with a good performance against St Aloysius. The matchup promised to be a close affair with both teams defeating Barker in previous rounds to post their only win of the season so far. Coach Mr Linden Smith-Hyde thought Waverley came out strong, playing some great team basketball to take an early 15-7 lead. St Aloysius were able to disrupt Waverley’s rhythm with a full court press that allowed the visitors to get back in the game. While only a couple of points separated the sides at halftime, Waverley began the half with a lack of energy that St Aloysius capitalised on to push out to an 11-point lead. Waverley were able to halt the visitor’s momentum, thanks to some inspired defense from 2nds captain Joey Lyons. Three big 3 pointers from Adam Femia and some strong inside play by Ben Walton saw Waverley briefly take the lead in the final minutes. An untimely foul put St Aloyisus on the foul line with 20 seconds to go, hitting one free throw that would prove the difference in the end as Waverley was unable to get a final second shot to drop. Despite the strong start, Waverley 2nd V ultimately went down by 46-45. Ben Walton, Keilan Grace and Joey Lyons were notable for their performances on the day. The 2nd V now look towards the Friday night game against Cranbrook this week, which will be a tough assignment in the cauldron-like atmosphere of the small Cranbrook gym. Cranbrook have excellent form and are undefeated for the season, having beaten St Aloysius and Trinity and drawing with Knox to date. The 2nds will need to be on their game if they are to come away with a victory.
Heading into this week, the 1st V were still searching for their first win of the season.
Coach Mr Johnny Jovine believed the 1st V had implemented a solid game plan and had excellent preparation during the week. Both teams started slow and neither was able to gain any ascendency. The half progressed evenly with Waverley moving into the main break with a slim 1-point lead at 26-25. As the third quarter progressed, the 1st V began to fire, running their sets well, getting defensive stops and turning their opportunities into points at the other end. The quarter finished 51-39 in Waverley’s favour and all the momentum was with the 1sts. In the final term, Waverley was able to improve on their third quarter lead and at one stage had move out to a 21-point buffer on the back of a couple of well-timed 3s from Christian Diaz and solid support from Ryan Abbott and Ash Backlund. Despite St Aloysius narrowing the gap, ultimately, the 1st V had done enough to stay comfortably ahead, taking out the game 67-51. It was a great team performance with the bulk of the scoring spread amongst six players and many of the key indicators, including Effective Field Goal Percentage, Rebounds and Turnovers in Waverley’s favour. Ash Backlund, Christian Diaz and Dion Hatziandreou were all standouts. The 1st V now face a rejuvenated Cranbrook, who despite losing heavily to Knox last week, claimed victory in their other two games this season, having accounted for St Aloysius and Trinity. Unlike last season, this season’s Cranbrook is a more competitive team and will undoubtedly lift for this week’s Friday night fixture on their home court.
In other games, Waverley had a great deal of success against St Aloysius. The following teams recorded wins: 7th V (20-10), 10B (36-31), 10C (41-20), 10D (36-20), 10E (33-13), 10F (65-7), 9B (40-11), 9E (30-12), 9F (42-6), 9G (30-10), 8B (21-19), 8C (40-18), 8D (29-18), 8E (26-17), 8F (31-5), 8G (22-18) and 8H (25-16). The 3rd V (35-29), 4th V (36-30), 9th V (25-21), 9A (46-39), 9C (23-20) and 8A (38-35) lost in close games. After three rounds of basketball, the 10C’s, 9F’s and 8C’s all remain undefeated at 3-0, while the 10E’s, 10H’s 9B’s, 9D’s, 9E’s, 8B’s, 8D’s, 8E’s, 8F’s and 8H’s are 2-1.
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Good luck to all teams this weekend against Cranbrook!