The Youth League men Coached by Rod Popp have also improved from their 2007 campaign where they finished 9th with 7 wins.  With the majority of the group from last year’s Under 20 State Title, Coach Popp has taken this group to another level.  The addition of Joel Naburgs (25.8ppg, 6.1rpg & 2.8 apg) to the roster helped the Cobras begin the season with an impressive victory over arch rivals Knox Raiders.  Since then they have gone about winning the majority of their games.

Naburgs has consistently shown his class recording back to back 40+ point games, scoring 46 in a win over Bulleen followed by 47 points while defeating Ringwood.  He has received great support from second year player Scott Dixon (18.2ppg & 7.2rpg) as well as Glenn Potts (13.2ppg & 8rpg).  The trio, with the support of Tim Mulhall, Zach Moult and Cam Johnson, have elevated the Cobras into contention for the Youth League title.

Coach Popp praised his team for the work they have done so far but made mention to the fact there is a long way to go, “I am very pleased with the progress of the group. They have learned to play relentless team defence and have been unselfish on the offensive end.”

“However we need to get better, particularly with our shooting. Joel Narburgs and Scott Dixon have been shooting the ball very well and are averaging 25 and 18 points respectively. Joel was very good for us in the 2 games Scott missed with injury averaging 46.5 points”, said Coach Popp.

The story of the Youth League women is quite remarkable, former Coach Ed Dunstan has returned to the sidelines and reversed the team’s fortunes.  The team led by 3rd year player Courtney Healy (10.4ppg & 6.9rpg) and rookie Jordyn O’Shea (8.5ppg & 4.4apg) have already won twice as many games as 2007 and with nine games remaining are in contention for a return to finals action.

With an average age of just 18 and six rookies on the roster, Dunstan has been able to energise his returning players with some youth and the improvement has been evident in the win column.  A former WNBL Championship winning assistant coach with Dandenong, Dunstan returned to senior coaching after a year off the bench.

Dunstan complemented the team on the hard work, “We started pre-season early and it was a long and grueling selection process for the group.  The girls selected in the squad have made the most of their opportunity and have trained hard to develop their game.”

“With such a young team, we are progressing faster than expected and the results are quite pleasing. We must continue to build on this early success and into 2009.  This core group of players can be successful if they continue to work as hard as they have been,” said Dunstan.

Both teams return to action this weekend, after the Queen’s Birthday weekend break, with away/home double headers.  Frankston will be waiting for the Cobras on Saturday night while they return home Sunday as the women take on Bulleen from 12.30pm and the men play Ringwood at 2.30pm. 

Get down to the Kilsyth Sports Centre Sunday to check out some great basketball action.

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