Level Playing Field in Miners’ First Final


The GMHBA Ballarat Miners have a great opportunity to make the most out of their first finals series in eight years. They match up well against their opponent, the Dandenong Rangers, and they have each beaten each other once throughout the season.

The Rangers have a strong reliance on imports Daequon Montreal and Tony Lewis, who have a combined average of 46 points and 19 rebounds per game. Andrew Harms and Owen Odigie just barely average over 10 points per game, and the next-best rebounder snares just four per game. The Miners, on the other hand, have four active players averaging more than 14 points, and three players who grab more than five rebounds per game.

Back in May the Miners trumped the Rangers by 10 points in Dandenong. Montreal and Lewis posted 48 points and 23 rebounds. The team had 75 field goal attempts with 41% accuracy, and each team grabbed 35 rebounds. Now-injured Miner Roy Booker drew heavy attention from Dandenong and recognised the opportunity this presented his teammates – Booker finished the game with a massive 14 assists. Ken Horton had 34 points in a remarkable shooting performance. Liam Gibcus led the Miners’ rebounding with 10 in a team effort.

After that game Dandenong went on an 11-game winning streak, but have dropped two of their last three. The Miners suffered injuries to Booker and Horton since then – Booker would play just four more games and Horton would miss four late in the season – but some unlikely wins have taken place. Booker’s replacement, Dyricus Edwards, has averaged 27 points across his last three games, and Nathan Sobey has averaged 24 points and 11 rebounds across his last four. Gibcus, Anthony Fisher and Chris Smith have all had big games, and these Miners are ready.

The game tips off at 7:30pm this Saturday at Dandenong Stadium. The winner will go on to play either Nunawading or Geelong, while the loser will be eliminated. Call 9794 7192 for tickets or watch the live stream at http://www.fibalivestats.com/matches/10/12/47/29/78WJ4Cd2OxASc/

Thank you to Thrifty Ballarat for providing all our travel needs, including the exclusive Ballarat member bus.