Eagles, Cougars to play in Grand Final (Men's Semi-Final Wrap)
East Perth Eagles have made club history after defeating defending champions the Wanneroo Wolves 83-67 on Friday night to end the best-of-three series 2-0 and progress to their first men’s grand final.
The Wolves fought hard in front of their home crowd to be up by one point at half time, however a 21-10 third period set the stage for a historic Eagles victory.
Tom Jervis led the Eagles with 21 points, 20 rebounds and five blocks in a dominant display, while former Wildcat Drew Williamson chipped in with a 20 point effort.
Jordan Wild led the way in the absence of Greg Hire with 22 points and 14 rebounds, Seb Salinas (18 points, nine rebounds) and Damian Matacz (11 points, 11 rebounds) provided support.
The Eagles used their inside presence to outrebound the Wolves 63-43, while also managing to restrict the home side to just 30% from the field and 17% from three point territory.
On Friday night the Lakeside Lightning took down the Cockburn Cougars 64-59 in a scrappy affair to level their series at one game apiece.
Lakeside star Ben Beran finished with 18 points for his side, while Brad Jackson provided support offensively with 14 points and Jarrad Prue was solid defensively with 20 rebounds.
Cougars junior Gavin Field led his side in the low scoring affair with 21 point, while imports Jeremiah Wilson (13 points) and Brain Carlwell (nine points, 16 rebounds) were also solid.
On Saturday night in the game three decider the Lightning got off to a strong start to lead 32-17 at the first break, however a 70-37 run in the second and third periods saw the Cougars up by 18 at the last break.
The Lightning came home hard in front of their fans and got to within one point of the Cougars, however the Cougars steadied behind a three point shot from Jeremiah Wilson to run out 102-92 winners.
Wilson led the Cougars with 36 points and 15 rebounds and Damien Scott chipped in with 16 points, while Brian Carlwell (15 points, 14 rebounds) and Sheldon McIntyre (13 points, 11 assists) provided support.
Ben Beran fought hard in the absence of Luke Payne, who injured his ankle in game two, to finish with 28 points and 15 rebounds, while guards Ryan Sofoulis (19 points) and Chris Sofoulis (18 points) were solid for the home side.
The Cougars now progress to their first grand final since 2003 and will be aiming for their first championship since 1992, while the Eagles will be looking for their first ever championship.
The Kickz101 Men’s State Basketball League Grand Final is on Saturday 1 September at the WA Basketball Centre, tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster. Click here to purchase tickets online, or call 1300 136 122 or visit your nearest Ticketmaster outlet.
Article by Hannah Coleman
Photo by Grant Lauterbach (carstereo.com.au)