By Hayley Wildes
Berwick College’s Basketball Academy is filled with potential and with a great program behind the talented athletes, the school just keeps winning major tournaments.
After their senior girls claimed the Victorian College Championship (VCC), along with the under-17 boys and under-19 girls being crowned 3×3 state champions earlier this year, the success continued in late June.
Berwick College’s Division 1 and Division 2 boys teams (made up of year seven and eight students) claimed their respective Junior VCC crowns and did so in dramatic fashion.
For the Division 1 boys, they claimed back-to-back State Championships. After drawing with Box Hill in the group games, the boys came back with a vengeance when the two teams met again in the grand final.
Berwick College simply wouldn’t be denied, taking apart Box Hill on both ends of the court, to record an impressive 33-25 win. What makes their back-to-back championships even more remarkable is the fact that the squad remains undefeated.
Chris Pentland, director of the Berwick College Basketball Academy, talked about the team’s unbeaten run.
“They went through all last year undefeated and then this year they’ve done the same,” he said.
“This was the first tournament of the year – they’ll have a couple more tournaments later this year – but to this point, they haven’t lost any games since they’ve been with us for a year and a half.”
In Division 2, Berwick College had two teams representing the school – and they faced off in an epic semi-final.
Berwick A squeezed past a defiant Berwick B team, 21-20. The game was thrilling, tough and a testament to the depth of talent the school has.
In the grand final, Berwick A had another close battle, this time against Geelong’s Saint Ignatius College. After Berwick A jumped out an early lead, Saint Ignatius College came storming home, but Berwick A hung on for a memorable 31-29 win.
With the three junior boys teams combining for two state championships and a third placing, the year seven and eight boys from Berwick College certainly made their presence known at the Victorian College Championships.
And this is just the beginning for the young guns.
The depth of talent and desire to succeed, both individually and collectively, is driving the junior boys basketball program to new heights.
“They’re a very talented group and with it being so competitive for spots, it’s keeps them all working really hard.” Pentland said.
With championships to win and unbeaten streaks to keep alive, keep an eye on Berwick College as they chase more glory.