8 November, 2021
Five good men
RYAN Mawdsley was exceptional and Stanley Bustard shot purely for the Stingrays to triumph in the opening Mareeba basketball semi-final held last Thursday.
Ballers dominated the opening quarter against the highly favoured Stingrays, with guards Mizhar Saba and Brendan Ebner controlling proceedings as forwards Tyson Tatti and Dean Gallo supported centre Luke Wainright seamlessly.
The rays wrestled their way back to near even at the half, and the contest was heating up. The rays brought no substitutes as if to declare they were comfortable with just five players.
Ryan Mawdsley amassed 29 and Stanley Bustard 28 points. Ballers had eight players and plenty of horses but just couldn’t coagulate the running ray break. Rays 85 over Ballers 77.
Just five players showed up for Buckets in the second semi-final but they showed up with intent. For the Red Devils, Craig Farley scored freely with 25 points and tagged regular scorer Brennan Collis all night.
Farley scrambled and foxed but Collis was up for the challenge playing with newfound maturity and evading the snares that his more experienced opponent was setting.
Buckets guard Ricaydan Wason (29 points) was sensational in scoring by myriad means, and his support crew of Anthony Archie, Kyll Wright and Andrew Sneath were gallant all night.
In the end, the fire power of Zayd Myrteza (17), the work rate of fellow devil Zac Myrteza (23) and a deep bench, did the damage. Devils 80 to Buckets 64.
Red Devils will play the Stingrays in the Grand
final this Thursday evening at 7pm.