The Kilsyth Cobras dream start to the 2019 NBL1 season has come to an end, suffering a shock 92-106 loss at home to the Southern Sabres on Sunday.


The Cobras struggled to get anything going offensively for three quarters on Sunday, scoring just 59 points through the first three periods of play to fall behind by 12 points entering the final stanza. They finally got going late, led by some hot shooting by Peter Hooley and Ben Ursich, but they had no answers on the defensive end for the Sabres, who had a response for every Kilsyth basket in crunch time.



A three minute lapse by the Cobras in the third quarter proved too much to overcome in the end, with the Sabres reeling off a game changing 14-4 run early in the second half to take the lead for good. After back-to-back baskets by Tohi Smith-Milner game the Cobras a 46-45 lead, Smith-Milners NBL teammate – Melbourne United’s David Barlow – sparked the Sabres run with three straight baskets in a 60 second span, and they would score on their next three possessions to take a 50-59 lead midway through the third period.


With the deficit stretching out to 12 to end the quarter, the Cobras could not trim it to single digits the rest of the way, dropping their first game of 2019 to fall to 6-1 on the season.



Hooley’s strong close saw him finish with team-highs of 24 points and eight assists; Ursich scored 19 points off the bench – on 5-for-7 shooting from deep – to go along with six rebounds; Smith-Milber added a 17-point, 14-rebound double-double; and Owen Odigie recorded 15 points and three steals in the loss.


While the Cobras buried 14 triples, it took 39 attempts to get there, and their 18 turnovers marked a season-high on Sunday.


The Cobras will look to bounce back in a blockbuster Saturday night showdown at home with the Ballarat Miners in the NBL1 Game of the Week (5.30pm/7.30pm). With the Miners overtaking the Cobras for the league’s best record, Saturday night’s battle is set to be the NBL1’s most anticipated game to date.


Saturday night is also our annual Junior Domestic Night, with all Kilsyth Junior Domestic players who wear their club gear receiving FREE ENTRY to both the Women’s and Men’s game on Saturday.