Division 1 Men
Bellarine Storm 94 defeated Corio Bay 69
All roads led to Storm HQ on Saturday night for the rematch between the Storm and Corio Bay in the Division 1 Elimination Final.
In front of an enthusiastic local crowd, the game lived up to expectations as the Storm, fresh from defeating the ‘Rays the previous week, were primed to repeat the dose again.
The first quarter was an even affair as both sides went toe to toe, to try and establish an advantage, however, things were still all square at 23 a pice at the first break.
Lewie Varley was taking up where he left off the previous week, as he proved to be a major headache for Corio Bay, with an 11 point first term, with Rohan Jarvie and the ‘Junk Yard Dog’ Jason Reardon giving solid support.
Another tight term in the second, saw the Storm go into the break with a narrow 2 point buffer with the knowledge they were right in this contest heading into the second half.
Into there third, the Storm really flexed their muscle as Varley and Reardon continued to be a headache for the opposition, with Leigh Saffin joining the charge, extending the Storm’s dominance to lead by 11 points heading into the final break.
With one quarter remaining in a cut throat elimination game, the Storm didn’t take a backwards step in the last quarter, wringing every last effort out to run right over the top of the Stingrays and snuff out their 2022 campaign.
Lewie Varley was the destroyer for the Storm, having a night out with 32 points and 7 assists, Jason Reardon wound back the clock to finish with 17 points and 10 boards, whilst Leigh Saffin chipped in with 14 points and 9 rebounds.
It was a great victory by the Storm, who are playing their best basketball at the right time of the season, and will now advance to a ‘Best of Three’ Semi Final series against Melbourne Uni, starting Saturday night at 7:00pm
Youth League Men
Bellarine Storm 68 lost to Melton 77
Sadly, our Youth League Men’s 2022 season came to an end on Saturday night as they failed to hold on, against a fast finishing Melton to go down by 9 points.
After a very even opening term, Melton held a slight 5 point advantage at the first break. For the Storm, our key play makers in Ethan squared (Nicholls & McDonald) and Vincent Whelan were prominent.
With their lead in hand, Melton tried to press the advantage early in the second, however, Bellarine chipped away at the task and with an Ethan Nicholls 3 pointer hitting the mark, the Storm found the lead.
With scoring proving tough for both sides in the second, the Storm managed to be able to get a nice little run going late in the term to set up a handy 6 point break at the half.
As you’d expect in a sudden death final, both sides tensed up in the third term, turning it into a real grind as scoring dried right up at both ends of the court, with Melton only being able to erase half the Storm’s lead, the home side going into the final break with a 3 point advantage.
With one quarter left for one of these sides, Melton grasped the opportunity, erasing the home side’s lead very quickly, before pressing further to try and establish a lead.
Bellarine stuck with the visitors and levelled the scores again at 63 a pice on the back of a perfect trip to the line for Max Maciejewski.
However, from that point on, the Storm couldn’t fire a shot, with 4 turnovers and 2 of 6 from the field from that point on, compared to Melton’s 5 of 8 scoring to be the difference in the end.
Despite bowing out for 2022, there is still much to be positive about with our Youth League Men, as we’ve seen the continued development of the squad and the emergence of several players, who will no doubt become key players in our Division 1 Men’s Program in the next couple of years.
To Coach Leigh Dawson, Assistant Coach Sam Johns, Team Managers Gaylene & Mark Nicholls and all the players, thank you for all your efforts in season 2022 and for representing Bellarine Storm with pride throughout the season.
Saturday 13th August 2022
YLW 1st Semi-Final v Albury/Wodonga @ Bellarine Secondary College 5:00pm (winner advances to ‘best of three’ Grand Final Series)
D1M Game 1 (best of three) Semi-Final v Melbourne Uni @ Bellarine Secondary College 7:00pm