By JARROD POTTER
SHOCKED into submission, Pakenham lapsed against last-placed Maccabi to take a two-point overtime loss on Sunday.
It plays into the close-fought contest in Big V Division 2 this season – no side is untouchable and no one can be taken lightly.
Going shot-for-shot in the first half, the Warriors came out after the break with their eyes closed and their heads down – shooting a woeful 2/16 – including 0/7 three-pointers from usual long-range marksman Jeff Reid – in the third term to give Maccabi the term 17-4.
Pakenham shook the dust off from that disaster to peg their way back and showed why it sits atop the table – scoring 25-14 to force overtime.
With scores squared again, Maccabi reached into its trick-bag to pull out the match-winning shot to take the 75-73 win.
Pakenham’s offensive accumulation centred on Jeff Reid (29 points, five rebounds, five steals), while James Topp (11 points, four rebounds) and Jay Ferriere (six points, nine rebounds, seven assists) were off their regular rhythm.
“It was just one of those days pretty much,” Pakenham coach Ryan Rogers said. “We did a lot of things right but didn’t win the game. We had 10 turnovers to their 27 and 17 more shots, but we just didn’t make them.
“It’s no panic stations for us – it’s not about where teams are based on the ladder. Maccabi is much better than a 2-7 team.”
Rogers praised the efforts of Reid and Craig Drew – with the young guard coming off the bench to provide a reinvigorating spark for Pakenham in the fourth quarter.
Pakenham remains atop the ladder, with a game in hand over Keilor and Mornington and face Keysborough at Cardinia Life on Saturday.
Rogers hopes their defeat this week spurs on a similar result that their last loss created – a long-lasting winning streak.
“We had a similar loss previously and spurred us on for a five-game winning streak and hopefully the kick in the pants some guys needed and nothing would be easy regardless of who we face,” Rogers said.
Tipoff is 5pm.