To the reports:
A's (8-3) Vs Happy Valley A (4-7) - Game 1 - Written by Orks - This week the A's would be engaging in two (2) games against the same opposition to make up for the game called off earlier in the season when Purge gave his knee a tweak. Before the game, we received word that Tauney had gotten lost in Ikea and would be a little late, which seem to have occurred to the opposition as well, as there were only 3 players there until 2 more arrived at tip off. Happy Valley have been performing poorly but that didn't mean we were going to take it easy, the A's needing a good percentage booster and chemistry development. After we had gone through our stuff in the huddle, one of Happy Valley's guys remarked “Ooh there's a whiteboard out, it must be pretty serious!” Well, yes, buddy, it is the A grade. This remark proved telling, as Happy Valley proceeded do demonstrate a very serious lack of seriousness, and we held them to six points for the half. We were just too big and our hands too quick for Happy Valley, with Corey claiming every rebound and our guards repeatedly getting on ball steals. Our offense wasn’t bad, but could have been a lot better if Orken wasn’t so shit. The second half showed a distinct dip in intensity as we realised it was a sure thing, and Happy Valley started getting their proverbial excrement together. Orken once again displayed his ineptitude by missing an open dunk. The game was over before it began, but we didn't perform as well as we could have.The final score was 46-20 with an equal distribution of scoring, Foo and Corey just a little bit more equal than the others scoring 10 and 9 respectively. It was just a boring game to play in and watch, so we endeavoured to “bring it” in the next game.
A's (9-3) Vs Happy Valley A (4-8) - Game 2 - Written by Orks - After a soul searching trip to the local IGA for a picnic lunch between the games, Orken was ready to play, and upon his return to the stadium, a prophetic aura of white light emanated from him as he slowly and deliberately walked down the stairs to the hardwood. With Corey and Tauney out, the outcome of the second game would rely on six men, each of which was laden with an unnamed desire to crush the opposition into a fine paste and spread it on some crisp bruschetta for an afternoon snack. Unfortunately, this desire would remain unsatiated until the second half. The first half consisted of intermittent bursts of high quality play, interspersed with various brain fades. Hobbs was doing a good job of getting to the line with six attempts, although only one of these passed through the hoop. Orken got an absolute monster of a chase down board swat, but the incompetence of the refs cancelled out its effectiveness. The second half was a demonstration, nay, a lesson, in the art of the fast break and stifling defense. Orken and the Brothers Harford were harvesting the lush crops of the court, getting blocks and steals that led to fast breaks time after time. In one instance, an opposition player posted Orken up and passed out to another player and illegally shepherded Orken out, but this didnt stop the lanky string-bean from blocking the shot over the top of the illegal screen, leading to a fast break and score. This was the ever-elusive kind of play the A's knew we were capable of but just couldn't bring with any consistency until now. We outscored the opposition 41-9 in the second half. Everyone was contributing, be it a steal or a quick pass, and the margin was blowing out rapidly, until Happy Valley became Petulant and Childish Valley, as they proceed to call two time outs in a row in the last 4 minutes of the game and one player was given a triple tech foul (the fruits of which Philip gobbled up greedily, claiming he “needed the practice”). I asked some of the Happy Valley players why they would bother spending $20 to come out and stand around at time outs wasting time, and one of them responded by getting aggressively up in my face and asking why we didn't make Purge crawl off the court last time we were to play. I asked him if he saw Purges knee that day and he proceeded to mumble an incoherent string of grunts. After this sour ending to the game, we basked in the glory of a much needed and confidence building pair of wins. The score was 69-24, 3 players combining for 52 of our 69 points, Orken and Phil with 18 and Jack with 16, but it truly was a team effort.
B's (8-4) v Knightsbridge A (4-1-7) - The B's were up against the inconsistent Knightsbridge - a team that tied with Saints but lost to Brighton and Happy Valley. The B's needed to start well to kill the game off early, the opposite of that happened ... they did not actually get a shot up for 4 minutes with turnovers and long stints in D followed up by Knighstbridge getting O boards and followed by more D. Darcy and Mike were doing the majority of the scoring, Darcy hit a 3 and was getting to the hoop and Mike was able to score inside. Lachy proved tough off the bench getting to the basket and the Reds were up 1 (23-22) at halftime. The 2nd half the Reds scoring dried up and Knightsbridge were consistently getting inside and getting to the line. With 6 minutes to go the B's were down 10. A switch to zone got some much needed stops, Jamie hit a 3 before fouling out, Darcy hit a 3 and when Ned got a layup and the foul the lead was down to 1 with a minute to go. Knightsbridge went down and missed and Mike got the board and was fouled to stop the clock. It turned out the scoreboard was showing Knightsbridge on 4 fouls, they were in fact in the penalty and Mike went to the line - missed the first, made the second - tie game. With 30 seconds left Knightsbridge ran the clock - got to 10 seconds - went to the Foreman in the high post, Mike played great D and got Foreman to take a tough shot, it was partly blocked and airballed ... Foreman caught the airball and went straight back up - score 40-42. On the inbound Ned was fouled - he had 2 shots to tie it up. He missed the first, had to miss the second ... all over. B's lost one they should have won. Darcy had 16, Mike 11, Lachy 5. Huge thanks to J-Town for scoring for the B's.
C's (11-1) v Southwest Hawks A (4-8) - Written by BB - The Cs this week played the Southwest Hawks, a decent team with some solid guards/ forwards and a good big. It was anyone's guess how the game would go considering Kobe was still not feeling 100% after a bad run of illness, Thommo having his first game back from holidays, and the Cs were missing Phil, Madman, and Hendo* (upon arrival of his new born son Thomas James - big congrats Hendo). Southwest got to a good start with their Centre going to work offensively making some nice turnaround jumpers on the post and one of their guards hitting a 3. We clawed it back though some tough D and good ball movement in offence. Offensively, Thommo was getting on the O boards and G made 4 first half 3s, giving us the lead 19-16 going into the second half.We knew G had the hot hand making 4 3s in the first half but the second half was something else. G started the second half with another 3 and then a nice jumper for 2, he then went a little cold as one of the opposition players yelled "BRICK" before he put a shot (which indeed bricked) getting in his head. G called a time out, regained his composure and then went on a tear and made an additional three 3s in a row! Even when Southwest decided to play some D, G could not miss, continuing on one of the craziest shooting clinics I have seen. It didn't matter what they did, play man, scramble or double team, G piled on another 7 points for the game. At one stage G made a turn around fadeaway with pretty much the whole Southwest side trying to play D on it and G still swished it. G was making shots off boards from Thommo's free throws, banking in 3s, it was just Gs day, leaving not only the opposition shaking their head but the rest of us as well who could only play supporting roles in getting G the ball. G ended the game with 35 points (including 9 3s), anymore and we would have needed a second scoresheet. We ended up winning 48-26. In my 10 plus years of playing ball in the club, I have seen some great shooters in the form of Brad Altman, Nic Blair and even** Palk but G's shooting performance really does go down as one of the best! Nice one G, you're a legend!
*Congrats from everyone at the basketball club Hendo that is amazing news.
**Palk Editorial Notes - Even? Even! Even !?!?!?!?!
D's (6-1-5) v Knightsbridge B (2-2-8) - Written by Simon - This was a must-win game for the D’s to stay in touch with the Top 4 and reclaim our place in the NE1 finals. It was nice (for an old-timer) to be back in the full red strip & thanks to the E’s for accommodating us. We were split 1-1 with Knightsbridge after they jumped us last time with their youthful intensity and we were too flat footed in our response. After the opening of last week’s Oakden encounter we knew we could lift it a notch, and with smarter and stronger players, could beat them if we played our game. It was an energetic start, Reggie blocking their #7 on the opening drive and we continued our strong D for the game. In fact half of Knightsbridge’s points in the 1st half came from our turnovers being converted on the break, rather than them beating our half-court game. So with us running when available and solid controlled half-court basketball, we went up and down the court with Knightsbridge but began to open a small lead as the half went on. Everyone got amongst it early, we played a much smarter inside-outside game than in previous weeks, giving us both the looks inside but also better looks for the outside shooters. Pritch, Kirks & Jono all netted 3s, Jono imposed himself with 9 first half points, & Lunny & Krantz were causing them trouble in the paint. We hit the locker-room* 27-18 up at the half. In the 2nd half we looked to flex our muscle some more, again moving the ball around perhaps the best we’ve done all year to find good options. Everyone was contributing, although Jono certainly lead the way, in everything for 13 for the half. Krantz continued to find great position, Lunny scrapped, hussled and rebounded at a pace belying his veteran status (including following up a great block to then hit the ball off a Knightsbridge player to our advantage). Kirkham dropped another couple of J’s and looked after the ball well, and Pritch & Reggie finished on nice drives and had good looks outside. With about 5 minutes to go, Knightsbridge closed the gap to within 9 points, but after a time-out & re-group, we lifted and finished off a high scoring affair, running out winners by 15, 56-41. Jono had 22, Kirkham & Reggie hit 9, Lunny 6. Thanks to Stu & Palky for scoring and to the good support on the sidelines from some players from games before & after ours & some PAOCBC dignitaries as well.
*by locker room I mean where our bags are securely stored on an open bench on the side of the court. I did see Pritch carving his number into one of the benches but this may have been unrelated.
E's (7-5) v Taperoo A (1-1-10) - Written by Diamond - Against Taperoo there was never any expectation this was going to be a game played in the noblest sporting spirit. The plan was to take the initiative by staying at them from the outset. Bubner led the way offensively by driving, drawing fouls and creating opportunities for others. This allowed us to stay in touch, however we struggled to gain momentum against Taperoo’s “physical” play until late in the second half. As the pressure built on Tarperoo on the back of some impressive shooting from Max (there is a dispute about how impressive) the thuggery increased and the difference was we were able to stay focused on playing basketball. A very enjoyable win as a result of solid contributions across the board. Win 31-28. Bubs 12 (shot 2 of 9 from the line ... and this improved his percentage), Max 9 and Cam 5.
F's (12-0) v Spicer A (1-11) - Written by Downtown - The F's came up against Spicer again this week and we quickly had the game under control. Stu launched out of the blocks with steals, interceptions and hard running, setting the tone for the rest of the game. Road Train dominated inside as always and Brad was capitalising on opportunities that presented themselves from the top as a result of our increasingly formidable 3-2 defence. The other team has this old bloke #21 who gets really fired up and tried to have a go at Road Train. HE TRIED TO HAVE A GO AT ROAD TRAIN. Let's just say if big Mr Read had the same temper as this guy the result would've been very unpleasant. We went into the half very comfortably leading 30-4 and the old bloke on the other team getting increasingly pissed as we played hard on him. We moved to a man for the first 7-8 minutes in the second and kept the pressure high. Much of the same went on in offence and we held them to five points for the half. The old guy was still getting physical after the play on several occasions but unfortunately wasn't called up by the refs for exactly what they said they would be calling people up for the other week. But that's cool, because we won 54-9 in what was probably the most impressive team game we've played all year. Brad got 19 and Phil got 10, six of which came from back-to-back triples (including a god awful bank) near the end of the second half. Road Train got 7, 6 each for Udit, Browne and Stu.
G's (5-7) v East Allstars (8-4) - Written by Hitman - This week G-Force faced the East All-Stars. Our aim this week was to get back to the fundamentals of limiting turnovers, playing good D, and hitting the boards. Both teams started at a frenetic pace but it was the All-stars who opened the scoring as their #6 threw up* a three-pointer that went in, to the surprise of all… and then he did it again. After that early 6-0 flurry the game became more conventional, with James demonstrating a more correct shooting form to amass 6 points for the half, and the half-time score was 10-14 to the East. We felt positive at half-time and had identified their main threat as #5, and believed that we could shut him down. For the next 10 minutes we were able to do that, but instead their #10 scored again and again, hitting several fast-break lay-ups in spite of some good defence and adding a three-pointer for good measure. Meanwhile G-Force were moving the ball well and getting some good looks, but repeatedly came up empty and our flipcards** gathered dust as the margin kept increasing. We were also struggling on the boards, giving up too many second-chance offences but never getting any of our own. As happened last week, supersub Troy stepped up with a brace of 3s, and Sam also found his scoring touch, but by then the opposition #5 had started to score freely and the margin continued to increase. In the second half alone, the opposition #5 scored 14 of his 20 points and their #10 added 11 of his 13***. The final score was 45-25. Scoring for G-Force was even with James, Sam and Troy all scoring 6, Brendan 4 and Reid with 3****.
*his technique doesn’t warrant the term ‘shot’
**once again, no scoreboard this week
***clearly my half-time address needs work
*****Palk Editoral Notes - the G's got 1 foul for the game ... 1! And while I am back ... what did BB mean by "even" ... even!
Lady Reds (7-1-4) v Edwardstown A (6-6) - You know that Hey Ya song by that Andre 3000 dude from Outkast when he asks the question "what's cooler than being cool?" and the crowd yell "ice cold". If he has seen this game the song would have gone "... what's cooler than being cool ... The Lady Reds shooting in the 2nd half". Lots of jumpshots went up and not many went in ... but as they say, you can't make it if you don't shoot it. The Reds were up 15-14 at halftime and lost 21-32. Second week in a row, the scoring dried up and the jumpshots just wouldn't fall. Megan had 8. It was great to have Wans back and Jordy is back this week.
Palky's Super Top Trio - Week 12
3rd - Jono Self - D's.
2nd - Nathan Graham - C's
1st - Nathan Graham - C's ... so good he deserves 1st and 2nd. He has set a new record for 3's in a Saturday game for Old Reds ... the previous record holder is said to have been so annoyed he shaved off his orange beard. Unbelievable display G!
Game Times - Week 13 - NOTE POWERHOUSE GAMES WERE TO BE AT WESTMINSTER BUT HAVE MOVED BACK TO POWERHOUSE!
|Aug 10||A||Knightsbridge A||1.50||Powerhouse||1|
|Aug 10||B||Happy Valley A||2.40||Powerhouse||1|
|Aug 10||C||Cherry Saints A||5.10||Powerhouse||1|
|Aug 10||D||Saints C||1.50||Cedar||1|
|Aug 10||E||Dunn A||1.00||Cedar||1|
|Aug 10||F||Saints D||2.40||Cedar||2|
|Aug 10||G||Golden Grove A||1.50||Cedar||2|
|Aug 10||LR||Cherry Saints A||2.40||Powerhouse||2|