By JARROD POTTER
MIDDLE terms paid dividends for the Pakenham Warriors in their 71-57 win over Coburg.
The bookends didn’t fare as well for the top-of-the-table Warriors – with coach Ryan Rogers labeling the finish “a case of relaxing and a bit of erratic play”.
Pakenham spun its wheels in the first quarter – unable to gain traction against Coburg’s workhorses Jordan Harding and Brian O’Mearea.
Pure Pakenham endeavour started to boil up in the second term – long rangers Daniel Stow (nine points, 3/3 3 points made (PM)) and Jeff Reid (19 points, 4/8 3PM) started to hit their straps while Coburg failed to find answers in a 24-10 quarter.
Reid showcased his experience further with the ball put in his hands as Jay Ferriere (10 points, six rebounds, five assists) got into foul trouble early.
The Warriors’ fun continued in the second half as James Topp (10 points, seven rebounds) got on the scoreboard before fouling out and Jed Bentley (seven points, five rebounds) took some extended minutes and had his chances from the perimeter.
Rogers said the win was indicative of his charges’ resolve in the midst of the match, but needed greater efforts at either end.
“I thought our second and third quarters were pretty solid,” Rogers said.
“Fourth, I was not too happy with how we finished off – 19-point lead at three-quarter time and really took the foot off the pedal and brought the game back to what it was by the end.”
Sending the message out, Rogers said he believed Stow could up his numbers with a bit more confidence – hopefully accruing more deep shots in upcoming rounds.
“He’s definitely a capable scorer it’s more a case of his own self confidence,” Rogers said. “Had other chances to have his shots, but that’s him – he’s pretty team-oriented and its never about him. We’ll probably look to mix things up against Mornington.”
Rogers was pleased with Reid’s all-round game, but was wary of a niggling shoulder injury.
All in all, following their mammoth first-versus-third clash against Mornington, all eyes looked ahead to the Queen’s birthday long weekend bye to refresh.
“I think it’s come at a good time,” Rogers said about the Mornington match. “We’ve got the break following it – won’t leave anything out on the floor.
“A rev up following Saturday’s match. I had a talk to a couple of the boys. There’s a bit of unfinished business – they’re a team we really respect and their ladder position’s indicative of their talent and they’ve probably got three or four guys who can put numbers on the board and its a game we need to be on task.”
Tipoff at Mornington Basketball Stadium is 8pm on Saturday.
In other Warriors’ news, Sean Armstrong is well ahead of his predicted recovery of an ankle injury – with Rogers stating his rising star guard could be ready to play Melbourne Metropolitan Basketball League (MMBL) matches within a fortnight.