Junior Suns excel at state champs

THREE Coffs Harbour teams travelled to Newcastle over the weekend to participate in the finals of the State Junior Championship and all came away with some pleasing results.

The Under 12 girls went into the weekend looking to replicate their result from last year where they were NSW Champions.

Unfortunately their title defence got off to a shaky start with a tight loss to an inspired Penrith team.

But this loss seemed to spur the girls on and they were able to get themselves back on track, getting over the top of a strong Gosford group.

In their final-round game, the girls proved way too good for the Sydney Comets, defeating them by 10. This set up a rematch against Gosford in the grand final.

In the final, the Coffs Harbour girls struggled to maintain their form of the previous encounter and, despite the loud support from the Under 14 boys, were unable to get across the line.

In the end they finished 14 points behind Gosford who were deserved winners. Congratulations must go to Ken Lowry and his team for another fine season

The Under 14 girls started their campaign against a red-hot Hills team. Starting off slow, the girls found themselves down by nine at the half, a deficit that turned out too large to overcome.

Fighting back strongly in the second stanza the girls bridged the gap to three but that was as close as they got, eventually going down 68-65.

In their next game against the Sydney Comets, the girls again got off to a slow start, trailing by 12 at the half. Unfortunately on this occasion they were unable to bridge the gap any closer, going down by 14.

In the last game of the weekend, the girls faced the form side of the competition.

Illawarra were yet to lose a match for the weekend and by the way they started, they weren't about to start.

Restricting Coffs Harbour's scoring opportunities, they got out to an early lead and were never headed. Final score 59-29.

Well done to Herb Haddon and the girls for an outstanding season.

The Under 14 boys have been in fine form all season and were expecting to put up a good showing against the best other three teams in NSW.

Coming up against a ferocious North Bears outfit in their first game, they found themselves behind by 15 at the half.

Refusing to give in they decided to change a few things in the second half and with a combination of great shooting and tough defence they were able to come away with the win.

In the second game they came up against a Bankstown team who are yet to lose a game this year.

Struggling to contain the size and speed of the Bruins outfit, the Suns ended up being defeated 73-47.

In their final game of the weekend against Illawarra, the boys played their hearts out and with only a few minutes left on the clock were well within striking distance.

Unfortunately a couple of unlucky misses at crucial times hurt and the Hawks were able to record a hard-fought victory 63-55.

Congratulations to Laurie Van Loo and her team for a terrific showing at this tournament and we wish them all the best for the upcoming National Championships.

Coffs Harbour also sent three referees to the event.

Emma Howarth, Erica Werner and Nic West-Foy all performed well over the weekend with Emma being rewarded by being selected to officiate the Under 18 women's grand final.

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