GMHBA Ballarat Miners Too Strong, while Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush Lose in O/T

The Ballarat GMHBA Miners finished off round 4 with a 35 point win over Frankston, while the Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush went down in overtime.

Written By Kasey Cornwell

The Miners stunned Frankston in a physical fast paced match. Co-captain Roy Booker nailed 29 points with 5 assists and game MVP Everard Bartlett starred with 16 points and 17 assists. The Miners dominated offensively, supported by Anthony Fisher on 23 points, 7 rebounds and Kodi Augustus finishing on 17 points, 8 rebounds.

The Miners were efficient up forward with 63% from the field and 54% from the 3 point line. Roy Booker attributed this to being able to get the ball to the good shooters in the team. The fast paced game suited the Miners and Head Coach Eric Hayes was extremely happy with the pace, as that’s the style he wants the team to play with. Guard Everard Bartlett agreed that this is the style of basketball that suits the guys well. Hayes was also impressed with the teams effectiveness, aggression and mentality and thinks the boys responded well to a few game plan changes.

Defensively effective also, out rebounding Frankston 37 to 25 and forcing 17 turnovers, Bartlett attributes this to their up-tempo game style. Defensively Hayes implemented a half court press that was effective, Booker expects that due to the success of this it will be used in upcoming games. The Miners began the half court defensive press in the second half and Booker thought this changed the whole game.

The comfortable lead in the game enabled Hayes to put a few of the younger guys on the court and Eric was happy Casey Marshall and Daniel Skaer were able to put their mark on the game, “it was great to be able to give them some court time” and reward them for their hard work at training.

The Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush forced their game into overtime against the Frankston Lady Blues yesterday, unfortunately going down 71 – 80 at the end of overtime. The Rush side was impressive with Co-captain Abbey Wehrung contributing a team high 18 points, 3 assists and 3 rebounds and Forward Olivia Thompson managing 17 points, 8 rebounds and 2 steals. Shenae Graves was also prominent with 8 points and 4 rebounds.

The Rush starred early on and entered the main break 5 points up, Abbey Wehrung was happy with their offence and rebounds in the first half, and felt the side did not respond like they should of when Frankston came out stronger in the second half.

Head Coach Peter Cunningham was concerned about being out rebounded defensively, 42 to 25 and not gaining the offensive rebound. Thompson confirmed this and thought the team gave up too many offensive rebounds and attributes this to boxing out. Defensively Thompson and the team handed Frankston too many easy shots and were punished on the scoreboard.

Rush ended the game with 32 points scored in the paint, but only 8 from 31 attempts at the 3 point line. Thompson thinks the team needs to get inside the key more and these statistics are testament to that. Cunningham is concerned that the team attempted so many 3 points without reward and urged the girls to start hitting the 3 points and get in and make the rebound.

Cunningham thought the team looked fluent and sharp and the whole team pulled their weight. Despite some of the statistics Cunningham was impressed that the side managed to force it to overtime noting the “good effort, because they really shouldn’t have been there”. The Rush came off a tough loss to Nunawading Saturday night and Peter mentioned that there were some sore and tired bodies out there and that’s why he rested the starting five late in the third and early in the fourth, because he wanted to finish with them.

Thompson was disappointed that unfortunately they just got beaten in the overtime, and was optimistic that this wouldn’t happen again.

Cunningham was incredibly positive about the Rush and was happy with the way the team played together and looked cohesive. Going into next week Wehrung thinks the girls can dig a little deeper and put a bit more into offence.

The GMHBA Miners and Harvey Norman Ballarat Rush continue their seasons next Saturday May 9 at the Mars Minerdome against Canberra. Games commence at 6:00pm and tickets can be purchased at the Mars Minerdome.