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    Caitlin Story, Horsham Lady Hornets vs Millicent Magic.

Tough time on court for Wimmera basketballers in CBL

By Colin MacGillivray

It was a tough weekend for Country Basketball League teams across the Wimmera-Grampians, with four teams combining for one win from seven games.

Horsham Lady Hornets were the sole team to taste victory in the women’s south-west conference, defeating Millicent Magic in a 78-77 thriller on Saturday night.

The come-from-behind win was led by Caitlin Story, who scored eight of her team-high 20 points in the final term and helped the Lady Hornets erase an eight-point deficit.

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The team also had strong contributions from Faith McKenzie, 16 points, Georgia Hiscock and Olivia Jones, 13 each, and Grace Manserra, 10, helping overcome a huge 39-point game from the Magic’s Emily Winter.

The Lady Hornets were unable to make it two wins from the road trip after a 58-45 loss to Mount Gambier Lakers on Sunday.

The Lakers, led by Olivia Wormold, Emily Dawe and Claire Hunter, pulled away in the second half to win by 13.

The Lady Hornets were again topped in scoring by Story, 14, with Jones, 11, the only other player to hit double digits.

The Lady Hornets have a week off before another road trip with games against Warrnambool on December 7 and Geelong on December 8.

Hornets suffer losses

None of the region’s men’s teams were able to win a game at the weekend, with Horsham Hornets suffering their first two losses of the season.

Playing without several key contributors including leading scorer Jeremiah McKenzie, centre Damien Skurrie and bench players Sam Breuer and Ben Lakin, the Hornets were forced to rely on a troika of guard Mitch Martin, forward Matt Lovel and coach Tim Pickert for the bulk of their scoring.

The three combined for 78 of the team’s 89 points against Millicent on Saturday, but could not stop Jordan Robertson, 34 points, from leading the home team to a five-point win.

The undermanned Hornets came up short again, against league powerhouse Mount Gambier on Sunday, succumbing to a well-balanced Lakers team to lose 120-82.

The Ararat Redbacks fared little better, losing back-to-back home games against Warrnambool Seahawks 85-77, on Saturday and Bellarine Storm, 82-73, on Sunday.

The Redbacks were surprised by the struggling Seahawks, coughing up an early 10-point lead to trail by nine at half time. 

A combined 36 points from Josh Fiegert and Fletcher Burger was not enough to make up the deficit after the long break.

The team trailed all game against the Storm on Sunday but nearly pulled off a come-from-behind win after a Fiegert basket trimmed the margin to four points with just over two minutes left.

It was the last time Ararat would score, as Bellarine hit crucial free throws to ice the game in the final minute.

It was a second consecutive win for the Storm, which made light work of Stawell Wildcats in a 128-48 win on Saturday night.

Clancy Whelan and Nathan Gronbeck outscored the Wildcats on their own with a combined 50 points.

The home team was led by Aidan Marr, 17 points, with Aiden Graveson and Joel Freeland also notching double figures.

The Redbacks and Hornets will meet in a regional rivalry clash in Ararat on Saturday night at 7pm, before the Redbacks take to the road to play Colac at 1pm on Sunday.

Stawell will also be on the road, travelling to South Australia to take on Millicent Magic at 2pm on Sunday.

The entire November 27, 2019 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire November 27, 2019 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!