For the first time in Byron Bay Basketball’s history the U/16 boys are the Waratah Northern Junior League back-to-back champions.
Playing in Tamworth over the weekend they won their first game against Coffs Harbour 84–88.
The had a rematch with Coffs Harbour in the grandfinal and with coach Nash Campbell away, and stand-in coach Jason Smith at the helm, the boys came out firing.
Controlling the pace of play on both ends of the court they grabbed the lead and never looked back.
The third quarter saw Coffs battle back to within four points, but the boys made another strong push to regain a 10-point plus lead.
The final score was 92–80 and the Beez’ Harry Blair was awarded MVP of the match.
The U/14 boys timed their peak for the 2018 Waratah NJL season at exactly the right time. First they beat a tough and scrappy Coffs Harbour Suns 42–35.
Later that evening taking on Bellinger Braves they scored a shock overtime upset 54–49.
Led by a fired-up Jackson McCabe, who rebounded everything under the sun, and point guard Jonah Caoyonan, the U/14s refused to take a backward step and pulled off their first win against Bellinger for the season.
Big mention goes to Jye Barlow, who came off the bench to make a massive impact, and Angus Wilkie, who had two huge three-pointers down the stretch.
In the grandfinal versus Port Macquarie next the boys continued forward with their strong defensive play and up-tempo offence against a much taller Port Macquarie outfit.
By halftime it was close, but in the third quarter the overall height and size of Port was a little too much to handle and they pulled away.
U/14s were well-desreved runners-up.
Our U18 boys went into the grandfinal’s weekend fourth on the NJL ladder with the hope of knocking off Bellinger Valley Braves for a berth in the semifinal.
But Bello’s offence was just too much to handle and, despite a comeback in the fourth, they couldn’t get on top.
The team capped of a good season by contesting to the very end.