Girls net country championship in Perth

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser

Albany Basketball Association tasted success during the opening weekend of the 2017 Basketball WA Country Championships at Bendat Basketball Centre in Perth last weekend.

Sending four teams across the under-16 and under-18 divisions, Albany were crowned champions in the under-16 girls’ championship division after a tense grand final against Manjimup.

Albany qualified for the decider after winning six of their seven round-robin matches to finish with 19 points, the same as Manjimup.

After losing their opening match to Australind by two points, Albany responded to defeat Bunbury (57-17), Busselton (54-23), Geraldton (22-17), Kalgoorlie (30-24), Mandurah (48-32) and Man-jimup (34-29) on the road to the final.

In the title decider, Albany trailed only once early in the first half and controlled the match after the break to win 28-21.

Narelle Humphries (8 points), Nardia Humphries (7) and Kayla Thomas (6) led the way in the victory. Nardia Humphries enjoyed a sensational tournament, averaging 9.75 points a game.

In the under-16 boys’ division, Albany also performed well to finish third, with the same points as Eaton and a better percentage, but missed out because they had lost their head-to-head round-robin match.

Albany beat Bunbury, lost to Eaton by a point, and drew with Geraldton before scoring big wins over Kalgoorlie, Mandurah and Northam.

The Raiders also contested the under-18 boys’ championship division and began well, beating Australind 49-28, but losses to Bunbury (36-40), Busselton (32-40) and Geraldton (37-59) ended their finals hopes.

Albany finished fifth with three wins and four losses as Hamish McMorran averaged 9.43 points a game.

Denmark won the under-18 boys’ division 3 title, winning all four matches before downing Harvey in a thrilling final.

Harvey trailed by three points late in the piece, but rallied to snatch back the lead before late free throws to Austin Stirling and Ben Edwards gave them an epic 22-21 win.

William Roocke (8) and Lachlan Hutchinson (5) were vital in the title decider.

Albany finished fourth in the under-18 girls’ championship division with one win and three losses from their four matches.

They thrashed Manjimup 40-12 in the opening game but losses to Geraldton, Mandurah and Bunbury ended their title hopes. Albany won the play-off for fourth and fifth against Manjimup, 45-12, with Shianne Arthur hitting 16 points and Jenna Onions adding 12.

Nardia Humphries, Henry and Henrick Alforque, Jenna Onions, Jasmyne Jones and Keanu Weeden were also selected in their respective divisions’ All Stars teams.

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