After losing to the AIS by 12 points earlier in the year in Canberra, Coach Grant Wallace and the team knew they not only had to win this game to keep finals a reality but defeat the students by over 12 points.
Gerard Leonard once again led the charge finishing with 29 pts and proved to be a difficult defensive assigment for the young AIS outfit. Joe Werner (19pts & 14 rbds) and Paul Burgess (6pts & 12rbds) controlled the boards against their bigger opponents as the Cobras won the rebound count 51-40.
Kilsyth shot ahead early in the contest knowing the final margin was crucial, in a hard hitting first term, the Cobras took a 27-19 lead. The officials allowed the teams to play throughout the game making each team work for every bucket. Despite the AIS pullling in 8 offensive rebounds for the quarter Kilsyth controlled the boards to finishing with 17 for the quarter.
The scoring dried up in the second term with both teams picking up the defensive intensity. Cody Ellis (15pts) led the AIS with some tough baskets but with Adam Jackson (17pts, 6rbds) and Luke Cooper connecting on the backcut, Kilsyth extended the lead to 11 at the half.
Coach Grant Wallace reminder his players what was on the line during the break and they responding, extending the lead to 18 at 3/4 time with a 30-23 quarter. DJ Taylor (14pts, 8rbds) and Jon Lee (14pts, 7 assists) both knocked down three’s during the term with Kilsyth shooting 8/20 for the game.
With an 18 point lead going into the 4th, the Cobras were not going to let their younger counterparts back in the game and after Werner fouled out Burgess needed to have a impact. He did and helped to the Cobras stay on top while extending the lead to 22.
Kilsyth continue to show that when they get their act together and share the ball around (21 assists) they are still a contender for the South title in 2008. For Coach Wallace and the team, they have been here before, with the current task of making finals looking just like it did it 2007.
The Cobras are back at home next Sunday afternoon to take on the Ballarat Miners in another must win game. With Geelong, Bendigo and Knox to follow Kilsyth will need to win at least 3 of their next 4 games. Tip off is scheduled for 2.30pm next Sunday.
Defensive specialist Sarah Haberfield has re-signed with the Kilsyth Cobras for the 2024 NBL1 season. Haberfield was a solid contributor to the Cobras roster in 2023, starting in 20 of 22 regular season games and ranking amongst the team leaders in assists (2.1), steals (1.0) and rebounding (3.3). The SEBC Saints junior recorded a
Mitch Dielemans has re-signed with the Kilsyth Cobras for the 2024 NBL1 season. Dielemans enjoyed a strong 2023 NBL1 campaign with the Cobras, averaging a career-high 8.9 points per game to go along with 2.2 assists per game, shooting team-bests of 40.3% from three point range and 80.3% from the foul line. He recoded