Meteorettes Win Tropical Youth League, Haughton Named M.V.P

Mackay Basketball will be hanging a third championship banner this year, after the Mackay Meteorettes under 23 side claimed the 2012 Tropical Youth League title in Townsville over the weekend.

The Meteorettes put on a dominant performance on Saturday, defeating the Cairns Dolphins 74-50 and Rockhampton Cyclones 69-51, before securing a narrow victory on Sunday against the Townsville Flames, 71-68.

After two rounds of competition the Meteorettes remained undefeated, securing their first ever Tropical Youth League championship.

Team captain Jillian Haughton was named Most Valuable Player for the competition, following stellar performances in both rounds.  Over the weekend Haughton amassed 114 points in three games, including a 49-point haul against Townsville.

Under 23 Meteorettes coach Mick Virgo said Haughton was outstanding and well-deserving of the MVP award.

"Not only did Jill score, she rebounded & defended extremely well.  She got everybody in the team involved and that was a big reason why we were successful," he said.

"She just makes everybody better.  We had 14, 15 and 16-year old kids playing on our team with extraordinary confidence and that's attributed to Jill and what she brings as a leader and floor general."

"I also thought Miranda (Thomas) played very good all weekend and stepped up in the absence of Rylie (Smith) who did not play because of an ankle injury."

"To win the Tropical Youth League championship caps of an amazing year for our women's basketball program in Mackay and lays a great foundation for us leading into 2013," Virgo added.

On the men's side, the under 23 Meteors finished third in the Tropical Youth League with a 3-win & 3-loss overall record.

Over the weekend the Meteors went down in a tough encounter to eventual champions, the Cairns Marlins 66-55, before defeating the Rockhampton Rockets 94-51 and the Townsville Heat 73-69.

Meteors guard Hayden Wicks was named Most Valuable Player of the Tropical Youth League after standout performances.

Under 23 Meteors coach Joel Khalu said he was proud of the players efforts.

"Going into this tournament without regular QBL players Luke Harvey & Mitchell Gamblin was always going to be a challenge, but the boys played above their size and really gave it a good crack," he said.

"I was particular happy with our victory over Townsville on Sunday.  We played hard and battled through some adversity.  It was pleasing to see the boys handle the pressure and come out on top of a good Townsville side."

"I thought Hayden (Wicks) was impressive and for an 18-year old to win the league M.V.P speaks volumes of his potential," Khalu added.

For more information please contact Mackay Basketball General Manager Joel Khalu on 4957 5543.



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