Country Tournament Winners

12.1 Girls
The team travelled down to the Moe Tournament last weekend with a number of goals that included getting to know each other better, both on and off the court, players and parents alike. Implementing a few specific things on court for us to continue to develop as the year goes on.

Our first game was against a traditional Gippsland power in the Sale Sonics, having travelled the 2 hours to Morwell the coach was a little nervous as to how we would react to the early start and the travel. No need to stress, everything clicked for the group, coming away with a 41-7 win.

Our second game to confront ‘the other Wildcats’, Korumburra. The game was a close and hard fought as we only took control in the last 8 minutes to win 27-12. After some much need rest (specifically the coach and parents) back at the hotel, the team ventured to Moe to play Moe. In another close first half we final gained some ascendancy in the second half to win 33-12.

Starting Sunday with an 8am game and the addition of some new concepts over the weekend had started to make big impacts, which helped us beat Traralgon White 42-11, resulting in us finishing the pool games with 4 wins from the 4 games and on top of the ladder. Waiting for us was Churchill in a semi final at 3. With a bit of time between games, the team went and supported the 12/2 girls in their last pool game, then back to the Mid Valley Shopping Centre to harass Santa. The theme for the day was ‘braided hair’ so Breanna’s production line was in full speed to be ready for the semi final.

Churchill really came out firing early making us have to fight hard for baskets. With some continued improvement of our focus points we played some of our best basketball winning the game 41-15. Off to the grand final at 6pm against Sale who won a nail bitter in overtime. Knowing that Sale would be better than the first time we played them, we stuck to the task. Basket for basket was the tail of the first half as we held a small lead at half time. Some great outside shooting in the second half blew the lead out to over 10. Eventually winning the game 44-30, as everyone contributed in their different ways throughout the duration of the weekend.

Thanks to the players for listening and pushing themselves to be better. Thanks to the parents for giving up a weekend to let the kids have some fun and do what they enjoy doing. Thanks to Breanna for being a great assistant coach and a decent braider of hair.

12.2 Girls
The 12.2 Eltham girls went to Moe Tournament and played in the B grade competition. Coach Paula Hogan wanted to begin the new championship season with an early tournament. Tournaments this early with a new group and before grading starts are great for team bonding of not only the players but parents and coaches.

The girls played 4 round matches, a semi final and grand final against country oppositions such as Lakes Entrance 37-17, Warragul 28-15, Heyfield 51-5, Leongatha 32-10 and Morwell 32-9.

The team had a wonderful time together and we were able to implement a number new things without any practice sessions and straight off the whiteboard which was great to see how well they adapted. The players/coach were having to be quick on their toes to work out how to play against a zone in 5 of their 6 games. The whole game plan changed however the adaptation by the girls was fantastic which meant we were able to try new things and understand how we can play a different game rather than relying on fast breaks even with this quick group of girls.

We did win all of our games and the biggest challenge was against Warragul who we played in the round games then again in the Grand Final. The Warragul Warriors were strong and an opposition we didn’t want to have to play again as they are very physical but our little team coped better the second time round.

The final score for the grand final was 25-16. The lowest score for the tournament but one that was certainly well deserved and all 8 players played their part not only in this game but the whole weekend.

Off the court the girls spent time together as a group, mainly indoors as the weather was raining all weekend. We were able to have both the 12-1 & 2 groups watch each other’s games and enjoy lunches out and some down time together. Great team building weekend.

14.1 Girls 
The Eltham Wildcat 14.1 girls went to Wangaratta Tournament for a weekend of fun, team bonding and hoops!! It was a fantastic tournament where the girls (and families) came together well on and off the court. We competed in five games throughout the weekend and performed at a high level game after game, resulting in a well deserved grand final win against the Wodonga Wolves 38-15.