Ringwood hosts the Basketball Australia CoE in NBL1 Round 11 action on Sunday 23 June.
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Over the years, the Ringwood Hawks have had a history of stepping up big on Milestone games. On Saturday night against Australian Olympian David Barlow and the Southern Sabres, the Hawks did it again delivering a 23 point win for Co-Captain Shaun Clarke’s 300th Big V/ NBL1 Game.
The Hawks honored Clarke pre game with a presentation and the hanging of his Number 24 Jersey in to the rafters of The Rings stadium and then started the game on fire. Jacob Gibson (30 points and 6 rebounds) and Adrien Sturt (21 points and 9 rebounds) both got hot from the perimeter and the Hawks quickly built a 10 point lead.
It was the Hawks defensive intensity that was the key and the job that Sturt was doing on Barlow was a massive factor. Sturt, who stands at nearly 6’11, had the athleticism to shut down Barlow who had his shot blocked numerous times and became frustrated. By half time the Hawks enjoyed a 14 point lead.
Adrien Sturt was sensational at both ends on Saturday night for the Hawks.
(Kath Miles Pic)
Hawks import Joey Miller (21 points and 5 assists) stepped up his input in the third quarter and had an answer for the Sabres whenever they tried to make a run. Matt Snow, who returned to the court after missing the last 5 games, was integral in proving the composure that the Hawks had been lacking. The Hawks comfortably closed out the win by 23 points for their third win of the season.
Hawks Head Coach Ken Harrington was relieved man post game but had a tongue in cheek announcement to his players in the postgame.
“I told them that each week we will have some kind of milestone to celebrate, next week against Frankton we will celebrate Clarkes 301st game.” he said with a smile.
“If that’s what we need to play with that kind of commitment then that’s what we will do.”
Clarke was solid in his 300th game with 4 points and 6 rebounds, but was restricted by the Sabres who put a small line up on the court to try and use their speed against the Hawks. The Hawks had all the answers though.
Next Sunday the Hawks are back at home against one of the form teams in the NBL1, the Frankston Blues. The Blues are loaded with American and NBL players, and are one of the biggest teams in the league. Game time for the men is 2pm, with the women kicking off prceedings at 12noon.
RINGWOOD 96 (Gibson 30, Miller 21, Sturt 21, Fennell 15, Snow 5, Clarke 4) defeated SOUTHERN SABRES (Barlow 15, Beisty 14, Box 12)