Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Gators sitting pretty on top of ladder

Shepparton Gators are riding high on confidence and are on top of the Big V division two men's ladder after a winning double at the weekend.

DAMEN FRANCIS May 13, 2014 3:15am

John Woodcock drops in a lay-up.


The Shepparton Gators juggernaut rolls on, with two more wins under their belt at the weekend.

The Gators shored up their place on top of the Big V division two men’s ladder by thumping Coburg Giants 85-46 at Shepparton Sports Stadium on Saturday night and accounting for Pakenham Warriors 88-57 at Cardinia Life YMCA on Sunday.

Gators coach Russell Parker said confidence in the group was sky high.

‘‘We’re pretty pleased with the effort so far,’’ Parker said.

‘‘Matt Bartlett keeps on keeping on, the defence work of Matt Waight has been invaluable and we dominated the rebounds again.

‘‘(The Warriors) challenged us in the third quarter this weekend, but whether we got complacent because we got tired I’m not sure.

‘‘It’s a big effort, most of the guys didn’t get home until 11pm on Saturday night and they were up early and on the bus early the next morning. There was certainly some sleeping on the way down to Melbourne.’’

Bartlett continued his stellar form, with 62 points across the two games, including 15 field goals from 21 attempts and six of eight three-pointers on Sunday and five assists on Saturday night.

JL Lewis was equally dominant, with back-to-back double-doubles, but everyone contributed.

Bailey Michel caught the eye with a pair of treys against the Giants and Bellamey Sims impressed with his court time in both games.

‘‘Bailey certainly wasn’t shy about having an attempt, so good on him, but it’s always pleasing to get our young guys onto the court,’’ Parker said.

‘‘We got to the stage where the opposition coach put his bench in as well, but Bellamey got some good minutes early in the game and he played well (on Sunday) as well.’’

Sims is able to play at the two or three spots and Parker said the young player’s speed, athleticism and strength could ensure he is a valuable asset if his development continues.

The Gators host fourth-placed Keilor Thunder this weekend in what looms as a bumper Saturday night clash in Shepparton.

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