In the last full weekend of schools basketball between the KZN10 schools before the half term breaks there were some clear markers laid down as to supremacy in the KZN10 basketball landscape.
Impressive wins for Michaelhouse in hosting Maritburg College, Kearsney College going to Hilton College and coming away with a well deserved victory.
A win for Glenwood U14’s (featured pic) against DHS is something these boys will remember for a long time..
We have included some midweek fixtures just to give a more fuller picture of what the basketball schools have been up to.
Hilton College vs Grace College
|Hilton College||vs||Grace College|
Martizburg College vs Alex
Maritzburg College had a tough away encounter against a plucky Alex side who showed, that on their home court they have allot of spirit.
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
St Charles College vs Hilton College
|St Charles College||vs||Hilton College|
A tough away fixture for Hilton College as they try and get in as many fixtures as possible before the St Johns tournament.
Michaelhouse vs Maritzburg College
An epic clash between two schools in a rich vein of form. Michaelhouse again were led by all star performers Kwanele Khumalo and JC Oelofse who, when their team needed crucial baskets, were able to click into a higher gear and maintain the Michaelhouse lead.
Maritzburg College fought manfully the whole afternoon, but crucial defensive lapses at key moments cost them dearly and were never really able to exert enough pressure on the Michaelhouse team to knock them off their stride.
An encouraging sign for the College program was that not one game was lost in the U14 and U15 age groups whilst in the open age groups there seemed to be a great deal of parity.
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
|Maritzburg College Wins||13||72%||506||28|
Hilton showed a much improved performance against Kearsney at home. Buoyed on by their vociferous fans the Hilton team showed that they are fast developing under the tutelage of Coach Shange.Kearsney again showed the rich pedigree that they have established under Coach Delport. At times it seemed that Hilton were making a run and threatening an upset only to be thwarted by an organized and polished Kearsney team.
|Hilton College||vs||Kearsney College|
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
|Hilton College Wins||5||36%||319||23|
|Kearsney College Wins||9||64%||409||29|
St Charles College vs Clifton College
St Charles who seem to be hitting their straps this season had a handy victory against Clifton College.
|St Charles College||vs||Cllfton College|
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
|St Charles College wins||12||80%||474||32|
|Cllfton College wins||3||20%||215||14|
Westville Boys vs Northwood
Westville had an impressive clean sweep of victories when they hosted Northwood on Saturday. Northwoods U15A who has put up some impressive displays this season was again the pick of the Northwood teams.
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
|Westville Boys wins||14||100%||538||38|
DHS vs Glenwood
In what must be considered an upset, Glenwood U14A (featured picture) beat their DHS U14A counterparts for the first time in many years. Credit must go to the Glenwood coaching staff who haven’t had an easy time of it this season but have soldiered on under difficult circumstances.
|Win Ratio||Points for||Ave:|
It was another thrilling week amongst the KZN10 basketball schools as their buzzer beaters and strong performances from all the schools
Clifton College vs Hilton College:
A evenly contested day between the two schools. With the points differential of 107-103 in favour of Hilton College across the age group A and 1st teams shows just how tightly contested the day was.
And of course, who could forget this from young Jacques Mahanga of Clifton College to win the game for Clifton:
This game, wow what a finish!
Kearsney College vs Westville Boys:
A great day for Kearsney as they win 10 of their games at the A and B team level. Westville’s depth came into play wining 9 of their own.
Northwood vs Michaelhouse
The scores may not be that big but Northwood at home is a tricky fixture as home court advantage really plays a huge factor.
And also Northwood stepped up its game off the court as well:
KZN10 Schoolboy sport really is special.
Maritzburg College vs Glenwood
A productive basketball day for College who played played 14 won 13 lost 1.
This weekends hoops action promises to have some action packed matches. With a wet Saturday forecast lets trust that some of the outdoor games will take place.
Kearsney College vs Westville Boys
An intriguing clash between Kearsney College and Westville boys. Last seasons 77-74 thriller between these two teams gives all indication that this may be a fast paced, frenetic affair. Kearsney playing at home will give them the extra motivation to perform. The triumvirate of Max Hastings-Brown, Dillon Wimbush and Liam Breytenbach will again supply most of the offensive fire-power for the home team.
Westville who have been out of action for a while will look to continue their fine season. Most of the good things for Westville happen through Cameron Best whose athletic prowess makes him a lethal finisher. Rohan Maclean will look to supply the necessary inside presence alongside Kgopotso Matlena. In the coaching department its Miles Delport and Byron Tucker as two of the top coaches in the KZN10 come up with the necessary strategies to outwit each other.
The schools have wisely decided to split the fixtures between the two campusues to mitigate losing fixtures because of the weather.
DHS vs St Charles College
Both teams come into this fixture with an eye on victory. DHS whose home court has become something of a fortress should relish the challenge from the Saint Charles College lads. Last year Buyani Ngcimu was the difference maker and led all scorers in the encounter in Pietermaritzburg. It will take a concerted effort from James Layne and captain Trent LeRoux to stifle his forays into the key.
Saint Charles who have mastered the sometimes extreme weather conditions on the coast will be in determined mood. Nkosinathi Dlamini will give the DHS guards a tough afternoon as the SA U16 point guard guides his side.
As much as its the boys who do the playing the wealth of knowledge in the coaching departments makes this match-up even more interesting with St Charles College coaches Darren Holcomb(ex national mens player) and Craig Gilchrist(current national mens head coach) locking horns with DHS Coach Letha Zulu(current mens U16 head coach) and his boys.
Maritzburg College vs Glenwood
College who are coming off a intense away encounter will be looking forward to enjoying the comforts of the Alan Paton hall when they host Glenwood. College captain Philani Simamane alongside vice-captain Nlankanipho Phenyane will again look to keep the college boys motivated and ready for the challenge. Glenwood whose last fixture against Westville was cancelled will come in fresh and ready to give their best.
A welcome addition to the calendar has been Crawford College La Lucia. This will be the first time that Maritzburg College faces off with the boys from Durban North.
Northwood host Michaelhouse
Northwood will be hoping that home ground advantage will give them the necessary edge when they host Michaelhouse. Whilst Michaelhouse will be brimming with confidence after last weeks great performance against DHS. Star performers Kwanela Khumalo and JC Oelofse will be linchpins in the Michaelhouse effort.
Clifton College vs Hilton College
Clifton will be looking to move on from last weeks disappointment against Kearsney when hosting a growing a Hilton College team. The conditions should suite Clifton a playing at home and laying in front of their passionate fans should give them the needed belief. Hilton College will rely heavily upon play-maker and Captain Singatha Jolwana to spark much of their offense.
The game of the day should be between U15A teams as Clifton and Hilton both have teams that have acquitted themselves over the last couple of weeks.
Here are this last weekends basketball results. With rain and drizzle across the province many of the matches were cancelled but there were still a few entertaining fixtures.
St Charles College vs Maritzburg College
As our preview last week pointed out, this clash would be something to savor and it did not disappoint. With the rain causing the cancellation of all outdoor games the Samukela Khumalo Arena was the focus for the afternoon. Overall a good day for College played 4 won 4.
Michaelhouse vs DHS
Saturday was a relatively successful day for the Michaelhouse basketball program winning 7 and losing 6 against visitors DHS and filler fixtures from Hilton College.
The first team game pitted the undefeated Michaelhouse team against perennial power house DHS. It was a battle of the star performers as Kwanela Khumalo of Michalehouse scored 26 energetic and powerful points to lead the team in scoring. On the other side was Buyani Ngcemu who must be one of the best schoolboy basketball players in the province at the moment. He continually made crucial baskets to try and keep DHS in the contest.
Early in the fourth quarter the DHS guards started placing extreme pressure on their counterparts and cut the lead to 2 points. But, as was the case the whole afternoon, back would come Michaelhouse lead by Khumalo who was simply to good on the day to stretch the Michaelhouse lead.
Kkumalo was ably supported by KZN Schools team mate JC Oelofse whose deft touches around the basket and feathery outside shooting created many mismatches in the DHS ranks and contributed 17 points of his own. The final score of 69-59 indicates a fairly comfortable day for Michaelhouse but credit must go to the DHS boys as the showed tremendous grit and heart to keep the game close.
Kearsney vs Clifton
Kearsney would be well please on the day winning 12 of the 13 matches the played against Clifton College and Maritzburg College. On the day the Kearnsey College shooters relished playing at home and took full advantage of their home court. Clifton will be well please with the fight shown by their U15A boys.
Hilton College vs Northwood
A good day for Hilton College at home winning 8 and losing 4 against Northwood, Michaelhouse and Grace College. A good home win for Ayanda Shange as he continues to work with his 1st team.
FAST Breaks, Lay-Ups, Double Dribbles, Bank Shots and Box Outs –
We can expect it all and more come the 6.30pm refs’ Jump-Ball signal and the long-awaited Classic Clash, the PMB Derby to end all Derbies, hits lift-off!!!
Yes KZN10 sports lovers it’s St Charles College firsts vs Maritzburg College firsts 6.30pm this Frosty Friday Night in the KZN capital… and in Saints’ revamped and freshly-named Samukele Khumalo Arena, in honour of the former Saints head prefect and basketball, rugby and soccer star Samke Khumalo, whose life was so tragically cut short when it promised to add so much to our country South Africa.
Among the glittering additions to this magnificent Saints theatre of basketball are glass-fibre drop-down boards and new stands that have added huge value to the ever-increasing KZN10 demand for fan seats in the pressure-cooker and precocious skill-set bouquet served up by our flagship KZN10 basketball teams, which include the likes of Michaelhouse, Kearsney College, DHS and Westville to name just four.
While the Harwin Road Side of the Samke Khumalo arena remains much the same, the court at the Astro End has been moved forward to enable a new bank of stands to accommodate the Saints boys, while the visiting boys populate the raised stands at the Gym End and the adult spectator stands that run the length of the Court of Hoops and parallel to Saints premier rugby field, Old Orchards, has been considerably heightened.
Yes fans of KZN10 much of the KZN10 basketball fan-focus is on this long-awaited and much-anticipated St Charles College Maritzburg College showdown.
Those in the know are saying pre-game that it’s way too tough to call a winner but what appears clear is that the team bringing their A-Game will prevail… and if history teaches us anything, by the slenderest of margins.
Sadly the wet weather forced the officials to cancel all the early matches on the outside courts but the age-group boys who have missed out on their match will definitely not allow that disappointment to diminish their support for their senior schoolmates tonight.
The scheduled St Charles College vs Maritzburg College fixtures, many of which were cancelled due to the slippery outside-courts’ surfaces:
- Current Saints first team head coach and Head of the Upper School, the former SA standout national basketballer Mr Darren Holcomb, has enviable tactical and technical back-up from the full-time Saints Basketball Specialist Mr Craig Gilchrist, who is also the current SA men’s head coach and a legend of the SA game in his playing days.
Given that the Saints Old Boys are expected to be out in force, one can surmise that Saints go into into this fixture as slight favourites.
But Maritzburg College under head coach Zeke Oosthuis have bounced back from an early-season defeat to Westville and have got their game back on track. Significantly, this week’s training sessions have revealed this: The Red Black & White line-up are in determined mood for an upset.
It’s set up for a wonderful occasion. The atmosphere, Razmattaz, drum beats, war cries and so much more from both sets of supporters will add an intoxicating rhythm to a festive and passionate atmosphere.
May the best team win!
Michaelhouse vs DHS
This is another cracker set to play out at House.
Michaelhouse must go into this fixture as favourites as they have been the most dominant of the KZN10 schools and haven’t been beaten by any of the local sides the last season. Playing in front of their expectant supporters will surely motivate them to greater heights.
DHS head to Michaelhouse after a tough loss at Kearsney. They will be looking to bounce back with a determined display.
Hilton College vs Northwood
Both schools will be looking to get back on the winning trail with this KZN10 fixture.
The weekend seems set for a determined push by one of these schools.
Hilton will be better as new head coach Ayanda Shange gets his troops organised. Northwood will be at their plucky best.
Kearsney College vs Clifton College
Clifton head to Kearsney quietly confident of a good performance after a solid early-season win against Northwood.
Kearsney, who have set themselves apart as the top basketball programme in the KZN10, will look to dominate at home.
Westville vs Glenwood
Westville host Glenwood at home with the Westville 2nd team taking on the Glenwood 1st team.
The first full weekend of school basketball matches in the KZN10 took place over this past weekend. Rain did have a say in a few of the clashes but without exception every 1st team got an opportunity to play:
Michaelhouse vs Westville
Of note in this particular fixture was going to be the match-up at 1st team level. Michaelhouse were the form team of Stayers season and they produced a convincing win at the Westville Multipurpose Centre. Michaelhouse 4 victories/Westville 10 victories.
Michaelhouse next host DHS while Westville’s next game – against Glenwood – has been cancelled.
Clifton vs Northwood
A good win for Clifton 1sts against their Durban North rivals. Northwood won the A team games in the age groups which bodes well for their future performances. The win total – Clifton 4 victories and Northwood 5 victories – indicates a great match-up for the schools.
Clifton next make the journey up to Bothas Hill to take on Kearsney and Northwood travel to Hilton College.
St Charles College vs Glenwood (Glenwood scores first)
A tough day at the office for the lads from Glenwood – there is hope that they can build on their U16A result as it seems like it was a tightly contested affair.
St Charles will feel relieved to finally get their season under way. As our interview with * Craig Gilchrist suggests, the Maritzburg private school is looking to make waves this season. St Charles 4 victories Glenwood 0.
* Check out Mr Basketball, the SA men’s head coach, SA legend and Saints’ full-time Basketball Specialist Craig Gilchrist’s fascinating KZN10.com video interview by clicking on his name link in the paragraph above.
Glenwood’s fixture this week against Westville has been cancelled, whilst St Charles play host to Maritzburg College in a 6pm evening game on Friday 25 January 2019.
This is a match that heralds the culmination of a special day in the life of the 144-year-old institution, the opening and renaming of their revamped basketball venue – splendid facility.
At 10.30am Friday a ceremony will be held at the St Charles College Indoor Centre, in which the facility will be named the Samukele Khumalo Arena, in honour of the recent former Saints head prefect and basketball star whose burgeoning young life, so full of promise, was so tragically cut short.
Come 6pm Friday, just under 8 hours after the christening of the brand new Samukele Khumalo Arena, the much-anticipated local derby between Saints and their cross-town friends Maritzburg College will play out to a packed arena.
Sam, the boys will do you proud.
DHS vs Kearnsey College
The matches were originally supposed to be held at DHS but the inclement weather which affected most of the KZN10 cricket prevented DHS from defending their home court.
The A team games and 1st team were moved to Kearsney College to at least give the boys a game.
The results indicate that the Kearsney basketball programme is operating at elite level. DHS can be disappointed, as zero victories on the day is not indicative of their quality.
Next up for Kearsney is Clifton at home whilst DHS make the journey up to Balgowan to take on a powerful Michaelhouse side.
Maritzburg College vs Hilton College
A good set of results for Maritzburg College whilst Hilton could feel that they were slightly underdone coming into this fixture.
With a new coach at the helm of Hilton it may take a few weeks for them to develop an identity but if last season’s results are anything to to go, success is round the corner. College 10 victories – Hilton 1 victory.
Next up for College is, as mentioned in some detail above, St Charles, whilst Hilton host Northwood.
As we count down to one of the most anticipated basketball matches of the year – St Charles College versus Maritzburg College this Friday, 25 January 2019 – let’s hear it from Saints director of basketball Craig Gilchrist, who is also the national men’s coach and a legendary SA player in his heyday.
Craig certainly has the credentials to hold court on hoops.
Feature image: Craig coaching the SA men’s basketball team.
Craig, KZN10.com is so pleased to spend time with a luminary of South African basketball, an inspiration and influencer to our coaches and aspirant schoolboy basketballers alike.
Let’s start with what was initially question 5; it’s a topic uttermost in the mind of KZN10.com – Friday’s official renaming of the revamped Saints basketball centre, culminating in the marquee local derby 6pm night match against Maritzburg College; can you outline the significance of the Friday?
Craig, Saints’ premier basketball team, lets walk through the downs and ups of 2018.
As Saints Basketball Specialist, how do you see the health of Saints Basketball as of end 2018 and into the 2019 year?
St Charles College’s basketball opponents in first term 2019, which KZN schools do you feel are going to test Saints the most?
The many Saints Basketball fans, what can they look forward to in 2019?
Thanks Craig, much appreciated. I can’t wait for Friday Nite’s Hoops Action. Let’s bang the first buzzer!
On what was a blisteringly hot Saturday afternoon in the KZN capital, the Maritzburg College and Westville first basketball teams locked horns in an Alan Paton Memorial Hall packed with vocal supporters.
Prior to the start, both teams lined up for a minute’s silence (feature pic) to honour Westville’s senior deputy headmaster, Mr Nestor Pierides, who had passed away during the week, a man who had done much to build the Westville sports programme.
The clash marked the beginning of the 2019 KZN schools basketball year and as the KZN10.com match preview indicated, this tussle was slated to be a ding-dong affair between two of the KZN10 giants – and it certainly lived up to the hype.
As a Stayers’ side, College beat Westville 64-55 in the 4th term of 2018 so there was much anticipation for the return encounter.
As Maritzburg College MIC basketball Jenny Orchard says: “The shouting captain for 2019 Ollie Zondi ensured that the supporters sang war cries throughout the match and this added to the wonderful atmosphere at the game, also showcasing what schoolboy sport is all about.”
The home side led the first quarter by 2 points and the same score margin at halftime indicates the closeness of this contest.
The third quarter proved to be the game-changer.
The third quarter started with the teams locked in an intense arm wrestle as neither side could really dictate play for any extended period of time. Every time Westville narrowed the gap College would score a couple of quick baskets to maintain a 6- to 7-point lead.
“Up to that point every time College’s offence and defence found synergy they would take the game away from Westville,” Maritzburg College first team basketball coach Zeke Oosthuis told KZN10.com
And it was during one these better spells of play by Maritzburg College that the turning point in the game occurred.
College were in control of the game and placing enormous pressure on Westville to make up their points deficit on the scoreboard.
College stole Westville ball and set off on the fast break, but the layup was unexpectedly missed and in the ensuing tussle College lost the ball to Westville.
On the very next Westville possession, College were again able to manipulate the Westville defence, and a College player broke for another uncontested layup but the point’s opportunity was missed once again.
So, to the Breakdown of Quarters 1 and 2 and 3
1st MC 11 W 9
2nd MC 10 W 8
3rd MC 14 W 13
The air seemed to be sucked out of the building.
“Westville, sensing that College had failed to land the killer blow, took the opportunity and started hunting for offensive rebounds, placing enormous pressure on the College guards to box out all members of the attacking team,” says coach Zeke.
Westville ended this decisive third quarter stronger, with College fighting to keep their lead. The quarter ended with College still holding the Westville team at arm’s length, but the College lead was now a “gettable” 5 points, as opposed to the 9 points is should have been.
Westville started the fourth quarter sensing that they had gained the ascendancy, and a marked feature of the opening minutes of that final quarter was the urgency with which they played.
“Westville, who up to that point had tried to score by running traditional plays for some key players, threw caution to the wind and aggressively attacked the College defence, taking every opportunity to drive to the basket,” says MC coach Zeke Oosthuis.
“College, who had contained Westville quite handily for most of the game, seemed to be thrown by Westville’s confidence and determination, and the lads in Red Black & White committed numerous unnecessary fouls in trying to stop the avalanche of Westville attacks.”
Midway through the 4th and final quarter Westville, behind some inspired play from SA U15 player Ethan Brooke, took the lead and ultimately control of the game.
4th QUARTER A MATCH-CHANGING Westville 19 MC 8
Grade 10 basketballer Ethan showing a great deal of big-match temperament in scoring 2 huge 3-pointers to electrify the Westville fan base, and the outcome saw Westville running out 49-43 winners.
Let’s look at Quarters 1 and 2… Even though College won the jump ball, it was Westville who opened the scoring and maintained the lead for a large part of the first quarter. However, with both good offense and defence the home team bounced back from a scoring drought to end that first quarter 11-9 ahead.
Maritzburg College MIC basketball Jenny Orchard: “Halfway through the 2nd quarter College had built a commanding 12-point lead through executing their game plan effectively.
“But, as was the case in the corresponding fixture in the 4th term, College again lost focus in the remaining minutes of the first half as Kgopotso Matlena of Westville exerted his considerable frame in the post and cut the lead to 2 heading into the break.”
MATCH MUSINGS of MC COACH ZEKE OOSTHUIS
“The anticipated one-on-one match-up between Cameron Best of Westville and Liam van Rensburg of College didn’t scale the heights as much as it potentially could have, as both players had moments of brilliance but otherwise cancelled each other out on the day.
“It will be interesting to see how their seasons progress as they may be the top two wing forwards in KZN this year.
“It was a great advert for the health of KZN basketball as two of the premier teams displayed a high level of basketball. As is the case though with talented and competitive 1st teams the margins for error are very fine – a few opportunities missed or taken can be the difference between winning and losing.
“Down the final stretch Westville made the better decisions and played the big possessions better.”
Westville won the fourth and final quarter by a match-clinching 10-point margin.
“Westville did themselves and their supporters proud, and if the jubilation of the team and boys at the final buzzer is any indicator, this was a match that they really wanted to win and was also a mark of the esteem that they hold Maritzburg College basketball in.
“Maritzburg College, on the other hand, can with reason be left feeling that they let this one get away. After 3 basketball quarters of dominance, they lost the last quarter 19-9, an indicator, possibly, of fitness. A tough lesson to be learned it seems.”
And as Maritzburg College MIC basketball Jenny Orchard says, “Coach Paul ‘Bear’ Bryant once stated, ‘Concentrate on winning the second half’, and this is what the College team need to do for their next game against Hilton College.”
Overall, however, it was a successful day for the Maritzburg College basketball programme, with 16 matches played, College winning 11 and Westville 5.
Coach Zeke looks ahead to Saturday, January 19: “The match-ups offer intriguing story lines. Home side Westville take on the undefeated Michaelhouse team of the 4th [Stayers] term. The corresponding fixture last term was cancelled, so it’s all to play for.”
Maritzburg College make the short journey up the hill to take on Hilton College. Another absolute cracker is in the offing.
ALL THE BASKETBALL RESULTS
* Maritzburg College score first
1st lost 43-49
2nd lost 27-34
3rd won 29-16
16A won 24-17
16B won 38-22
16C won 18-16 extra time
15A lost 24-25
15B won 22-15
15C lost 14-27
15D won 13-10
15E lost 6-11
14A won 40-23
14B won 10-5
14C won 16-6
14D won 6-2
14E won 14-8
14F drew 4-4
MC overall vs Westville
MC 4th vs 5th…… 4th won 29-15
MC 16D vs 16E….. 16E won 22-20
It’s just SECONDS AWAY FROM THE BIG SHOW! Yes, start time in the much-looked-forward-to opening game of the KZN10 schools’ basketball season and all eyes are on the splendid Alan Paton Hall.
Yes folks it’s home side Maritzburg College vs Westville.
KZN10.com asked MC bball coach Zeke Oosthuis a couple of pre-match questions:
Feature image – MC basketball coach Zeke Oosthuis and the army.
“Thanks Jono, it’s great playing Westville as they have a large basketball programme and match us team for team across the board.
“It’s always a tough encounter, 5 years ago as an example MC were number 1 in SA and had just won the prestigious St John’s Johannesburg tournament and we came back and lost to Westville.
“We play them first term and 4th term each year and in 2018 Westville won the first clash with us wining by about 9 points in the fourth term Stayers match.
Those Stayers are back out there today so it’s going to be fascinating. I am not sure if Westville are at full strength but be that as it may a school is only as good as it’s overall basketball programme so we will see.
“Westville coach Byron Tucker has a clear basketball vision; he is no-nonsense and produces tough organised hard teams.
“The Westville basketball brand? Historically a very good shooting outfit, zonal play, big-size players, last while moving more towards a man-to-man style as I like Maritzburg College to play, albeit in a fast up-tempo fashion.
“Westville shoot well from the outside, they are able to clog up the key, and shoot from the outside, while they don’t give away many points from inside the paint.
“I anticipate a tight affair, I am confident the Red Black and Whites of Maritzburg College – buoyed by their home support, can take this one.
“If Westville bring their A game and their top guys are on song – we may have more depth though – MC are in for a tough challenge.
“We take into the game the knowledge that although we lost the last Stayers match of 2018 to the strong Michaelhouse side at Michaelhouse, we came back strongly and a lot of self-belief was bred in that performance.
“The boys need to carry that through today.”
Thanks Zeke – top stuff.
Best wishes to both sides.
An 8-point lead after the first quarter; an 18-point lead at half-time; 11 points ahead going into the final quarter; then the Kearsney College firsts’ wheels almost came off.
The Westville firsts basketball team were not done yet; upping the pace they won the final stanza 28-20 but in the end it was just a three-pointer too far to make up; the Kearsney lads edging them out by 77-74 to take the honours.
Tracey van den Aardweg feature image: Ryan Wimbush of Kearsney College firsts and SA U16.
It was a classic finale to the 2018 basketball year.
The top performers for Kearsney were Dillon Wimbush (35 points) and Max Hastings-Brown (12).
The big numbers for Westville came from Cameron Best (20 points), Jude Joseph (12) and Jed Hayman (11).
Kearsney started well, finding fluidity on offence and scoring freely.
Westville didn’t appear to have an answer for the Kearsney offence, but also managed to score easily on Kearsney’s defence.
Kearsney closed out the first quarter 23-15 ahead.
The second quarter was much the same, with Kearsney outscoring their opponents, but also allowing easy baskets to be scored against them.
Kearsney went into half time with a commanding 43-25 lead.
There was not much change in the third quarter, with Kearsney comfortably 57-46 ahead.
The fourth quarter was a different ball game.
Westville upped the tempo and found their scoring rhythm.
Kearsney made some silly defensive errors and allowed Westville to shoot free throws and cut significantly into their lead, while not being able to make their own free throws.
The quarter almost saw Kearsney lose a game in which they were in total control for most of the match.
It was a valuable lesson to the Kearsney players not to underestimate their opposition and to remain focused until the final whistle.
Kearsney managed to hold on to a 77-74 win.
* Two Kearsney basketball players, Max Hastings-Brown and Ryan Wimbush, have been selected for the SA U16 basketball team to participate in the African Union Sports Council Zone 5 Games, to be held in Gaborone, Botswana during December.