The St Laurence Geelong Supercats have stamped their authority back on the Geelong Arena with a convincing 19 point win over East conference ladder leaders, the Dandenong Rangers with a final score of 94-75.
Coming back to the Geelong Arena after a 9 point loss in Knox last night, the Supercats started off strongly and never lost momentum in the game. David Mecanovic was sensational for Geelong, finishing with 17 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists in his game MVP performance. Head coach Jamie O’Loughlin was pleased with the improvements that the 2011 Supercats Rookie of the Year had made. “David is a really huge success story for this club and for himself in the way he’s grown through SEABL over the last two years. He has really become a crucial player to our game style and our line up, especially now that we’re adjusting to playing without KB (Kimmani Barrett). He’s the one who has stepped up the most, we’ve put a lot on his shoulders and he has responded.”
After being defeated by the Knox Raiders last night, the Geelong Supercats were determined to come back and show that they still had what it takes to win tough games without Kimmani Barrett. “The guys were pretty disappointed about the way they played last night, and at the time we just couldn’t get our head right in the game, we couldn’t get ourselves out of it. But having the time to reflect after the game, and talking this morning building in to today’s game we had that chance to get our minds refocused and back where they needed to be, and it showed. We had a much better attitude to what we needed to do and it had that flow on effect.,” said O’Loughlin.
The win today has now guaranteed a top two finish for the Supercats, and the double chance in the first round of finals. Geelong are still a chance to host the first final, if Dandenong drop both of their remaining games next weekend and the Supercats can get up over Bendigo, they will finish on the same win-loss record and Geelong will have the head to head advantage. However, should Dandenong win just one of their remaining games, the Supercats will travel up the highway to Ranger country on the weekend of 17-19 August.
The Roderick Geelong Lady Supercats have suffered their first defeat on their home court in 2012 this afternoon, being defeated by the Dandenong Rangers 48-68. The loss gives the Rangers a square advantage over the Supercats leading up to the finals, with Dandenong now holding the 2-0 head to advantage over Geelong should the two teams finish with the same win-loss record after next weekend.
Although still missing captain Kylie Morrissy, who has been placed on injury waiver due to bone bruising in her knee, the Lady Supercats welcomed Deanna Smith back to the team today after missing last night’s game against Knox. Smith top scored with 14 points and 7 rebounds for Geelong, while Candice Rogers just missed out on a double double with 9 points and 10 rebounds. Rogers also returned to the side last night after missing last week’s loss to Kilsyth with a dislocated finger. Coming off the back of a 26 point loss to the Knox Raiders last night, head coach Paul O’Brien said that turnovers were the key to today’s defeat. “We just didn’t look after the ball. If you have a look at it, they scored 15 points off our turnovers. I thought we played three really good quarters of basketball, but that last quarter something just dropped off for us and we were simply beaten by a better side on the day.” The Lady Supercats shooting percentages is something that the team will be looking at for next week’s final regular season home game against the Bendigo Lady Braves, shooting at an average of 26% across the two games on the weekend. Having already sewn up a top two position for the finals, the Lady Supercats are destined to meet the Dandenong Rangers in the first round of SEABL East conference finals in two weeks time. The Supercats will have to travel to Dandenong for the game, but should they win on the road they will earn the right to host the East Conference Grand Final on their home court.
Before the finals begin the St Laurence Geelong Supercats and Lady Supercats host one more home game, next Saturday 11th August at the Geelong Arena. Ladies tip off at 5.30pm, Men at 7.30pm
Written by Beth Davis