Shepparton Gators have lost top spot on the Big V division two ladder after a loss and a win at the weekend in what was a tough double-header.DAMEN FRANCIS July 1, 2014 3:15am
Shepparton Gators lost top spot on the Big V division two men’s basketball ladder, but took plenty of valuable lessons out of the weekend’s gruelling double-header.
The Gators were bullied off the court and the competition summit by a physically superior Casey Cavaliers side at Casey Indoor Leisure Centre on Saturday night, but bounced back with a 10-point win against Mornington Breakers at Shepparton Sports Stadium on Sunday.
‘‘You’ve got to be happy with a win after the type of loss we had on Saturday,’’ Gators coach Russell Parker said.
‘‘The game was pretty draining for the players and we didn’t get off the bus until 2
Parker took 12 players to Casey on Saturday night, but only eight took to the floor due to the physical nature of the contest.
Captain Matt Bartlett and centre JL Lewis played all 40 minutes, forward John Woodcock all but 10 seconds, guard Matt Waight all but 27 seconds and shooting guard Dylan Wayman nearly 34 minutes, as Parker relied heavily on his starting five.
The Gators stood strong in the opening stages and led by five points at half-time.
However, the scoring dried up after the main break, particularly from three-point range, where they managed just 1-8 in the final term, and went down 69-63.
Bartlett was uncharacteristically wayward from beyond the arc, hitting just four of 19 attempts and finishing with a season-low 11 points.
Lewis managed a 17-point and 15-rebound double-double, while Wayman had 14 points, Waight 12 and Woodcock nine.
The visitors had no answer to Matt Witherden, who dropped 25 points on 60 per cent shooting, including six treys.
‘‘They were too physical for us and we didn’t deal with them very well,’’ Parker said.
‘‘It was a conscious decision to leave guys on the bench. We didn’t feel we had the match-ups and Matt Bartlett got beaten up, so our guards weren’t going to be able to deal with that sort of physicality.
‘‘It was a good game in terms of the closeness and competitiveness, but in my opinion in was poorly refereed.
‘‘It went both ways, but it was contrary to how we’ve been told games would be refereed before the season and they adjusted better than we did.
‘‘Can we be more physical? I’m not sure, but we can definitely play smarter.’’
Things were brighter on Sunday, as the Gators exploded out of the blocks with a 35-point opening quarter.
The high scoring continued for both sides and the home side won the shootout 97-87.
Bartlett bounced back with 26 points, Lewis had 21 and Waight 17.
Parker was unhappy with the defending at the three-point line, with the Breakers hitting 13 treys, but was happy to score close to triple figures.
The sky is the limit for Wanganui Year 12 VCAL student Leigh Polan, 18, who decided to create two posters examining birdlife around the school.
The under 16 Pigeons kick started the YFNC's finals campaign with a resounding victory over the Paul Spargo led Scots College in the Grand Final of the AWJFL Elwyn Langford Shield at the Albury Sports Ground on Sunday.
Greater Shepparton City Council was successful in securing the National Cutting Horse Association Victorian Futurity Cutting Horse Championships for 2014 and 2015, with this year’s event scheduled from September 10-14 at Tatura Park.
An ad for the Healthy Ageing Project will be filmed in Echuca, Rushworth and Rochester today.
More than $15,000 was raised at a family day on Sunday. The event was to raise money for the families of Barry Purtell and Dave Lobb.
Book Week gets colourful turnout.
Deaprtment of Environment and Primary Industries unhappy about Mt Disappointment vandals.
Jerilderie Shire deputy mayor Ruth McRae handed the key over for the new Rural Fire Service station last Friday.
Farmers have a new weapon in the fight against mice.
Cobram kids learn about health with hospital as state-wide obesity campaign is launched.
Murray Irrigation to search for new boss after Anthony Couroupis finishes with the company.
A few anxious customers were outside the closed gates of the failed Bee-Jay Machinery business on Goulburn Valley Hwy in Shepparton on Tuesday morning, wondering what would become of deposits they had paid for tractors and other machinery.
The Benalla Indian Myna Action Group will pay a $1 per bird bounty on live birds delivered to CAL farm. National Party MP Bill Sykes donated $100 to fund the bounty.
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