COMMUNITY COACH COURSE
Wednesday 19th September
In 1991 after a period of non affiliation with Basketball WA, it was decided to enter Kalamunda (KDBA) teams as the Kalamunda Hornets in the W.A Junior State League competition. Players previously had to play for Swan Mustangs (SDBA) at the Juniour State League Level in earlier years.
For a number of years Kalamunda and Swans both entered about 9 - 12 of the 14 available divisions and were not hugely successful. Basketball WA sought to fill all divisions and encouraged the amalgamation of Swans and Kalamunda to fill all of the divisions. Mundaring (HRBA) saw this as an opportunity for their players to access this level of competition. Players were polled and success was their focus so the Association of Eastern Region Basketball Association Inc, playing as EASTERN SUNS was formed in 2001.
Inaugural President was Bob Little (HRBA President & Life Member SDBA) and each Association had two representatives. KDBA had one from the Parents and one from the Committee.
Colours were white, ochre, green & gold to represent the Eastern Region. Training was held at Kalamunda for Junior's and Swans for U/18 and over. 50% of the games were played at Kalamunda Stadium and 50% were played at Swan Park. In the first year 4 teams made finals. Each Association had contributed $5000.00 in cash or in kind (Training Time), to establish Eastern Suns.
HRBA Eastern Suns won the Under 23 Division in 2003. Terry Rolfe was Chairman in 2003 & 2004 and Rob Gordon was Chairman in 2004 & 2005.
ERBA was represented by two persons from each association and initially there was input from all Associations.
However this deteriorated when Swans (SDBA) was in financial difficulty with increasing debt to BWA.
KDBA was in a position to seek a license from the SBL but was unwilling to assume the SDBA debt as part of their license. (In excess of $40,000) Swan City Mustangs SBL and Association ceased to operate.
In 2005 Basketball WA indicated that they would not be happy with the Eastern Suns (ERBA) having SDBA as part of the structure at either WABL or SBL level. They were only prepared to support an affiliated Association as the governing body of the WABL program. In 2005, 10 teams went to WABL finals from ERBA Eastern Suns.
There were a series of meetings where SDBA maintained they still existed and HRBA sought to have representative involvement. Subsequently HRBA declined to remain involved. At this stage there was a suggestion that an SBL licence could be issued in 2007. ERBA - Eastern Suns was formally wound up at a meeting on 12/01/2006.
A KDBA steering committee was formed with Paula Gray as Chairperson of the Kalamunda Eastern Suns in March 2006. A competition was held for the logo design and the colours of Orange, White, Blue and Gold were accepted subsequently in May 2006.
Subsequent Chairpersons were Carly Mansfield in 2007 and Terry Rolfe in 2008 and 2009. Teams continued to be successful with about 9 - 10 teams making finals each year. Nicole Mansfield coached the Under 14 Touring Team to the National U/14 Club Championship in 2006.
A formal approach to join the State Basketball League (SBL) was made and initial indications were that 2007 would be possible. Subsequently, BWA made a statement in March 2007 that Kalamunda Eastern Suns could enter the SBL competition with both Men's and Women's teams in 2008. Head coaches Joe Mackay and Craig Mansfield were appointed in early 2007 to head a program which took the teams to Women's 4th in 2008 and Men's 9th in 2008. Import players Steve Newman and Joe Nixon greatly improved the skills of the mens team.
2009 saw the return of Joe Nixon and also the addition of Adrian Majstrovich (ex Wildcat & International Player), to the Mens Squad. Ben Smith (ex KDBA Juniors), was appointed Captain of the Mens Team. The Womens Team were added to by Sam Norwood and a number of WNBL Lynx players. Coaches Craig Mansfield and Robbie Butt took the Men to 7th and the Womens to 6th in 2009. Ten Eastern Suns WABL teams went through to finals in 2009.
In mid 2009, Peter Hanson (KDBA President), also became the Chairman of Eastern Suns Basketball.
SBL Coaches for 2010 were Ash McCormack for the Mens program and Craig Mansfield returned to the Womens program.
Naming rights for the SBL were secured with AND1 (USA) and with it came "The Chosen One", Kenny Brunner, as our only Import player. Other major players were Adrian Majstrovich and Justin Brown (ex Roleystone Juniors) who both have extensive International experience.
The 2010 Season was not a great success with many games lost by less than 5 points. Suns Men and Women did not play finals in 2010. The Womens SBL squad was a very young side with a number of State U/16 players featuring.