The Tatura Titans’ under-18s enjoyed mixed success at the recent Swan Hill Junior Basketball tournament on October 28 and 29.
They won two of their four matches and came close to beating the winners of their pool, and eventual winners of the tournament.
The first match was a close-fought contest against Swan Hill.
The match was evenly poised until the last few minutes when some lucky shots put Swan Hill ahead.
Matt Rennie led Tatura in scoring with Tom Dooley Heath dominated under the ring.
This was a hard-fought match that could have gone either way.
The second match against Mildura was a low-scoring nailbiter.
The scoring was close with hardly any period of the game showing a clear lead to either team.
Matt Rennie top-scored again with 14 and was supported by Daniel Hall with eight and Floyd Vincitorio with five.
Josh Evans and Michael Coonerty both rebounded well to keep Mildura frustrated.
With one minute left Daniel Hall got off a tough shot from a rebound and put Tatura one point ahead to win 31-30.
Wangaratta was up next. Tatura struggled to score against the strong outfit, with Evans top-scoring with nine points. Wangaratta made good use of its tall rebounders and defended strongly, and Tatura was unable to put together any consecutive goals and bridge the gap.
The last match played was Tatura’s best, displaying the team’s improving court play against the competition.
Rennie scored effortlessly with 17 and most players got among the goals. Jerome Owen-Horn was at his athletic best under the ring and Kayde Coonerty, Vincitorio and Hall had to step up and share ball-carrying duties when Rennie ran into foul trouble.
The team executed its plays well and stopped Deniliquin regularly to run out the winner, 37-28.
Again at this tournament Tatura showed it was capable of being competitive against much larger towns, narrowly missing out on beating the eventual winner.
Maddie Rijs did an outstanding job coaching the team and it is now looking forward to the next tournament in Castlemaine on December 9 and 10.