2016 SA Junior Champs - Day 2
For many it's Day 2 but for some grades and pools tonight is the start of their Tournament.
Last night's games had a combination of expected results along with a few surprises. Of note:
South 12 B R proving their best is as good as anyone's coming from behind to beat the 5-0 Tigers at Morphett Vale by 5
Forestville 12 B S turned around a 15 point loss a month ago to draw with South
South 12 G S shocked everyone with an 18 point win over the winter season leaders Eastern
Eastern 14 G S statement win over Norwood by 24
Forestville 16 B S showed their true form with a 20point win over an unpredictable Eastern
Norwood (2) 18 B R almost pulling off the upset of the night losing by 1 to Summer Premier's South
Eastern 18 B S held off a fast finishing South to secure a 2 point win
Eastern 18 G S at full strength reversing an early winter loss to beat the Bearcats by 25
And on to tonight's games where an abundance of pool games will match #2 v #3 seeded teams against each other. Remember in particular Finals in 14 B S comes with a Nationals invite and 3 of 4 Semi Finalists will be National's bound in the girls also. We could see the boys virtually locked in after tonight's round of games.
We should start to see pools sorting out the finalist from the field tonight, tempered with the usual shocks and surprises.
Given the importance of so many games we've had to limited our list but we assure you there are plenty of important games. All 10 suburban Stadiums are in use so there is bound to be a game close by. Get out and support your club, friends and family.
Don't forget entry is Free!
6:15pm Hillcrest 12 B R North 1 v Southern
After last night's shock loss to the Panthers, Southern need a win here to stay in the Finals race. Can they produce the form that got them the win over the Rockets to start winter or will the Summer Premiers end Southern's run?
6:15pm Hillcrest 12 G S North v Norwood
The traditional rivals meet in a 2v3 pool match up the winner likely to play finals. A 1 point North win earlier in Winter along with a more consistent run over Summer puts North just ahead but either team could get the win in a tough Friday night battle with a lot riding on the result.
6:15pm Marion 12 B R South v Norwood
Like their State counterparts these two teams face off after mixed results between them since October. At 2-1 head to head the Flames do have better form but lost convincingly last week to Southern, who South managed to get past last night. The winner likely to make finals.
6:15pm Mars 12 B S Norwood v South
Round 1 Winter, same location resulted in a tied game between these two teams. #2 vs #3 trying to secure a Finals spot, with last night's Panthers draw throwing all kinds of scenarios into the mix now. South cannot afford a loss tonight, a win still needing other results to go their way to break into the Pool's top 2. Norwood would be able to lose and still keep their Finals position intact.
6:15pm Morphett Vale 12 G S Southern v Eastern
A couple of years of close battles between these clubs in this age group. Another significant game between the currently undefeated Mavs and the ferocious Tigers. Expect a close one and Finals for the winner, despite a comfortable Mavs win earlier in the winter season.
7:15pm Marion 14 G S South v Centrals
Potentially Finals for the winner. South would be keen to make up for their loss at Starplex a few weeks ago. Meanwhile the Lions form has been solid in a very even competition. South come in as favourites but State Champs for 14s has a lot riding on it and the team that handles the pressure best will get the win.
7:15pm Mars 14 G S Norwood v Forestville
Last night's loss for the Flames make this a must win against a very deep but less then convincing Eagles outfit. The Summer Premiers should put together enough of a run for the win, ending Norwood's finals hopes.
7:15pm Morphett Vale 14 G S Southern v Eastern
The Summer Season Grand Finalist will have a tough time holding off the Mavs in this one. A win at home early last month would have Eastern coming down the hill with a level of confidence in their ability to knock off the higher seeded Tigers. Both teams come off impressive wins Thursday night against very different opposition. The winner of this one will almost certainly secure a Semi Final spot in the process.
7:15pm Pasadena 14 B S Sturt v Eastern
Two 4-1 teams but the Sabres run so far has been more impressive. We're unsure if the Mavs will be able to shock Sturt with a win but if Finals and Nationals are the Mavs goal, then a win vs the Sabres is a must.
7:15pm Port Adelaide 14 G S West v Sturt
Last night's loss to Centrals mean the Bearcats must shock the #1 seeded Sabres to keep their Finals hopes alive. Sturt are all business this time of year, especially in Under 14s and we would expect they'd be ready for anything West can throw at them.
8:15pm Port Adelaide 16 G S West v Norwood
Both teams coming in off comfortable wins last night, but tonight will be a very different story. Another 2 v 3 match up which will most likely decide who plays finals and who misses out (or has to beat Forestville to sneak in). Given their recent win between the two sides we're tipping Norwood to get up but it could be one of the best games of the night.
8:15pm Wayville 16 B S Forestville v North
#2 v #3 seeds so in theory could be a finals decider. The Eagles win last night over the dangerous Mavs was a good first step and North have a number of big games to come before they can think about Semis. Both teams would likely need to win this one to continue on to the Semis.
8:30pm Starplex 16 G S Centrals v Sturt
Off court issues and a coach change have had little impact on the Sabres since their Round 1 loss but the Lions at home will present a defining challenge tonight. Centrals come in as the higher seed but both team's go to players are elite athletes and basketballers and this will be another tough contest in a night of close exciting games. At home we're going to side with the Lions, just.
9:15pm Mars 18 B R Norwood 1 v Forestville
Last night's win over the Rockets makes this game a potential finals decider, if Southern can hold their form and lock up the first position. Forestville's loss to West last weekend may have been the wakeup call they needed while a spirited Flames group would see this as a chance at revenge for their 2014 Grand Final loss.
9:30pm Adelaide Hills 18 B S Eastern v North
The Rockets current record is deceptive and dismissing them early in the weekend would be foolish. After sneaking past a pesky South last night the Mavericks would be looking to further cement their claim on a finals spot with a win in their only chance to play at home for the weekend.
9:30pm Hillcrest 18 G R North 1 v Sturt
Our mistake going with Winter team names, North 1 are made up of a number of players from their Summer Div 1 side making this game and Pool a lot tougher then we predicted (and the already deep Pool B a little easier for those left). With West losing and North beating Forestville these two teams are headed for finals at this stage but we think this could be one of the games of the night so worthy of special mention.
9:30pm Port Adelaide 18 G S West v Forestville
After last night we assume we know the Eagles line up which has been uncertain until now. Can Forestville turn around their Winter form to beat a worthy Finals challenger or will the Bearcats put last night's loss behind them and remain in the Finals race with a win tonight.
9:30pm Wayville 18 B S Forestville v Norwood
Another must win in a deep pool. #2 v #3 with Centrals seemingly out of reach, this game likely to decide a semi final position. Norwood's form this season has been more convincing but it's a close competition and either team could get the win.