Suns are full of fight
LAST Saturday night, before a crowd of more than 300 screaming fans, the Camera House Suns men's basketball team showed their great fighting spirit to score a win over the Macarthur Heat 88 points to 81.
The game was a sudden death quarter-final against the fourth placed team from the southern half of New South Wales.
Boasting a team of quality guards, a 7ft 1inch Sudanese National Team centre and a left handed power forward, the Heat played great full court basketball throughout the first quarter hitting many outside shots and driving hard to the basket.
For the Suns forwards Nathan Schmidt, Sean Murphy and Scott Davies led the scoring with Dirk Miller and Joe McGann directing the team around the court.
Keeping the Heat in the game through risky passing in the key the Suns turned the ball over five times in the first quarter but as half time approached it was clear that the Suns guards and forwards all had their A games with them.
Some crisp three-point shooting from McGann. Miller, Ely and Davies the two teams went into half time locked up at 48-all.
In the third quarter the Suns changed from a man to man to a match up zone and this unsettled the Heat's shooters.
Executing their half court sets the Suns started to take small leads with Murphy and Davies screening off each other in the key. A power dunk over Davies by the Heat's centre ignited the visitors, but in the end the power of the Sun's inside game was much greater than the odd spectacular play put on by the Heat.
Craig Hanlon and Nathan Ainsworth showed their class with the ball, with Nathan driving and finding the Sun's forwards with excellent passes.
In the last quarter Suns rookie Mitchell Cole took the ball to the basket strongly as did Schmidt, Davies and Murphy but in the end it was some excellent outside shooting by Ely, Ainsworth and McGann that broke the back of the Heat's defence.
Sun's captain and power forward Scott Davies was the stand out player on the court, his 32 points showing the sort of form that had him in Newcastle's NBL/ABA squad prior to moving to Coffs Harbour as a school teacher.
Sean Murphy (24 points), Nathan Schmidt, Joe McGann and all the Sun's guards were outstanding playing great team basketball.
The Suns now travel to Goulburn to play the Goulburn Bears in a sudden death semi-final. Goulburn is the team that Sun's new recruits Sean Murphy and Joe McGann played for in 2004.
The Goulburn Bears were the State League Runners up in 2004 and have recruited strongly from the ACT in 2005.
Goulburn was also the team that knocked the Sun's out of the State League in 2004 sending us to third spot, needless to say there's plenty for the Sun's to play for this Saturday night.
Under 12 girls
LAST weekend in Grafton the first of the finals series for Northern Junior League competition was held. Coffs Harbour's under 12 girls had both their first and second team qualify for the finals. Due to the structure of the finals the two Coffs teams met each other in the opening semi-final.
The number 1 team defeated the number 2 team 96-22. This meant our number two team would have to play Tamworth that afternoon to win the right to play off in the final.
This game proved to be a real heart stopper with our 2's leading at the end of the first, second, third but not the fourth quarter. Our girls went down to Tamworth by two points. Put well ahead in the foul count and having Adrienne Oates and Sarah Bamford fouled out the girls did a valiant effort to go down by the narrowest of margins.
In the grand final Coffs 1 started slowly against Tamworth but picked up the intensity with each quarter running out easy winners 98-32.
Ruby Mayson scored 27 and MVP of the match was Tiarne Saunders. This was an excellent effort from all the girls who now travel to Wollongong to compete at round 2 of the State competition.
THE Saturday schools' basketball competition numbers have exploded this season, with 69 teams now entered.
This is an additional 17 teams from the previous season. The introduction of the year 2 competition has proved most successful with seven teams having their first taste of basketball.
St Francis Xavier School from Woolgoolga and Toormina Public school have both entered teams this season ? the first for the Woolgoolga school and a welcome return for Toormina who have previously had competition winning teams from their school.
Major changes to the rules for the year 2, 3 & 4 competitions were explained last week, and welcomed by the players and their parents. From these changes we hope to see an improvement in the skill level of the players.