Injury could sideline centre

Tayler NealeAlbany Advertiser

Raiders’ under-18 development squad could be without centre Hamish McMorran when they face Crabs in a sudden-death first semifinal in the Albany Basketball Association men’s A-grade competition at the Albany Leisure and Aquatic Centre tonight.

McMorran rolled an ankle at training on Friday and his inclusion is doubtful, according to coach Darren Berry.

If unavailable, the key big man will be sorely missed in what is set to be a physical encounter.

Crabs will take confidence from their round 9 victory against Raiders, albeit without league MVP Matt Leary, in which they rallied late to claim a seven-point victory as Wade Eskett poured in 12 points.

The round 2 clash between the two sides back in October brought a vastly different result when Raiders notched a convincing 18-point win as Leary top-scored with 16 points.

Berry said his side was weary of Crabs’ potential. “They’re quite a physical and athletic team, so we are going to have to beat them to the boards,” he said.

“Shooting-wise we can outscore any team if we’re on, so we have to be ready to go and we can’t back off.

“We’re also obviously a younger team, so we have to keep running and wear them down.”

Crabs captain Jayden Scott said keeping Raiders’ three-point shooting in check would be key to getting the win.

“We know we can match it with anyone if we turn up,” he said

“They’re a quick team and if they get hot from outside we’re in trouble, so our defence needs to be tight.”

Scott said his side would also need to stay on top of Leary.

“He’s a great player and thoroughly deserved to win the MVP award so we have to keep a close eye on him,” he said.

“We’ve got physicality and experience on our side, so we will use that to our advantage.”

Barking Owls take on Tigers in the second semifinal, with the loser of that match playing the winner of the first semifinal.

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