Written and provided by Basketball ACT, hosts of the 2014 Australian Schools Championships
Our grand finalists were decided last night in the championship divisions, and we were treated to some fantastic basketball.
Rowville were the first to lock up a finals birth as they continued to cruise against Palm Beach Currumbin. Kaiden Taito once again proved that she is one to keep an eye on in future by posting 23 points and 11 rebounds but it was no match for the defending champions. The depth of Rowville was a clear advantage throughout the game, giving coach Dean Kinsmen fresh legs to continue to throw at the opposition. Expect this to again have an effect on the result of the grand final.
In the other semi final, John Paul College managed to squeeze out a close win against Monte Sant’ Angelo in a highly entertaining game. Madeline O’Hehir managed 35 points for Monte Sant’ Angelo, however she was out dueled on the day by a stellar effort from Carleigh Patrick. Patrick carried over her form from the semi final to the tune of 42 points and 14 rebounds. She was ably supported by Jayden Fuiava who had a 21 point and 11 rebound double double of her own, and this combination was too much to handle for the opposition.
The men’s first semi saw our first major upset, with Sydney Boys High dropping their first game of the tournament against upstart Sacred Heart. This one proved to be all about the bigs as Sydney’s Gerlach battled inside against Akol Deng from Sacred Heart. They battled to what basically amounted to a draw with Deng stepping up to match Gerlach’s 21 points and 16 rebounds with 24 points and 18 rebounds of his own. Tournament leading scorer Isaac White chipped in 17 points of his own, leading to a 68-57 win for Sacred Heart.
They will meet St Augustine’s in the grand final after they overcame 22 turnovers to defeat St James in a close tussle. Deng Gak stepped up in a big way, showing some of his immense potential in a 15 point and 7 rebounds off the bench, and Jonathon Marsh again impressed with a workmanlike 20 points and 14 rebounds. St James managed to get double figure scoring from 4 players, lead by Dan Acuil’s 18 points however ‘Jimmies’ could not overcome a slow start to keep in touch with St Augustine’s.