Motivated by some words mid-week from Braves head coach, Ben Harvey, Kilsyth raced out to a 10-0 lead and never looked back, with Isaac Turner, Sean MacDonald and Dane Pineau spearheading a big second quarter which saw the Cobras lead by as many as 19 points. That lead would grow to as large as 30 midway through the fourth quarter as the Cobras cruised to their ninth victory of the season.
The Cobras were irked by Harvey’s words in the press, with the Braves coach he was “happy” to play Kilsyth with his team in need of a win before the long weekend.
“We weren’t happy about Harvey’s comments in his article during the week and used that for a little extra motivation,”Schueller said.
“To bounce back with a win the way we did after a disappointing game the week before is what we wanted, and it’s great to go into the break positioned where we are.”
The Cobras responded from a blowout loss to Nunawading the week prior in a big way, with Saturday’s game reclaiming first place in the SEABL standings – a position they share with the Ballarat Miners.
As has been the case for much of 2018, Schueller received significant contributions across the board, with five players scoring in double-figures. Turner led the way with 23 points and four assists, Pineau added 17 and nine rebounds, MacDonald and Owen Odigie each finished with 11 points, and Ben Ursich chipped-in with 10 points off the bench. Despite battling foul trouble, Cobras big-men Chris Patton and Desmond Owili were effective inside, combining for 17 rebounds and six assists.
With point guard Sam Daly missing Saturday’s game with an ankle injury, MacDonald received his first SEABL start and did not disappoint, providing a tremendous first half spark and recording a game-high five assists to go along with his 11 points, much to the delight of his coach.
“Sean MacDonald deserves special mention – he played a great game in his first start for the club,” Schueller said about his 18 year old floor general.
“Other standouts were Dane, Owen and Chris who all gave us something different during key moments in the game.”
At 9-2 the Cobras are tied with Ballarat for first in the league standings, sitting one-game clear of Nunawading and Hobart as the season passes the midway point. Following a break for the Queens Birthday weekend, the Cobras are back in action for a Round 10 doubleheader, taking on reigning champions Mt Gambier on the road on Friday June 15, followed by a Sunday matchup with the Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence on Sunday June 17.
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