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SA Defence Basketball (SADB) hosted the 2009 SA Inter-Service Basketball Tournament at RAAF Base Edinburgh over Th & Fr 16-17 Jul 09.
2009 saw seven teams enter into the competition with five men’s teams and two women’s teams from all services taking part. The women’s competition saw the return of two full teams for the first time in several years with an Air Force team and a combined ADF team. The men’s competition took a slightly different approach this year with not only teams being entered from Navy, Army, Air Force and APS, but the addition of a side manned completely from 11 Squadron Aircraft Technicians. The rise of the 11 Squadron “Techos” team led by Corporal Hong Le has added a new dimension to the SADB community and inspired spirited rivalry within the competition. Regular matches between a combined SADB men’s team and the 11 Squadron “Techos” has become an important part of the yearly SADB training calendar including the recent addition of an annual grudge match for their name on the perpetual trophy and the subsequent bragging rights for the next year.
The two women’s sides matched up against each other twice during the round robin phase of the competition which saw both teams take away a win prior to the grand final held on Friday afternoon. Jess Kellaway top scored with 10 for the Air Force Women in the first match and Corporal Julie Weston top scored for the ADF Women in the second match with 14. The final saw the ADF Women take away a decisive victory 31-9 with Aircraftwoman Michelle Hiesley taking the top scoring honours with 13 points.
Across the two days of competition, the men’s teams proved to be fairly well matched and the two finalists were not decided up until the final matches. Navy led by Leading Seaman Lewis Macivor, who entered their first team in the competition in several years, was unfortunately undermanned, however with the assistance of other participants, managed to display excellent spirit, teamwork and determination during the games which they hopefully use as an incentive for future competitions. The standings at the end of the round robin competition saw Army in the lead, Air Force Men second, APS third, 11 Squadron “Techos” fourth and Navy fifth. The APS team narrowly missed out on making their second consecutive grand final appearance after a 31-38 loss to Army in their last game. The preceding 3 games took their toll on the undermanned APS team allowing the fresher Army team to run the game out.
The men’s grand final saw Army match up against Air Force Men in what was expected to be an excellent game. Army took the honours during the round robin competition however Air Force Men adjusted their game play going into the final in an attempt to counter the strong outside shooting supplied by the Portakiewicz brothers, Anthony and David. The tactics of the Air Force Men seemed to be paying off at half time as they took the lead 42-24 on the back an excellent second quarter which saw triple three point shots made from Corporal Tim Muehlberg and a determined display on the boards from Corporal Dave Thomas. Army clawed back early in the third quarter due to a quick fire 13 points from Corporal Dave Portakiewicz, however another solid effort from Corporal Dave Thomas and Sergeant Glen Solomon in the key saw the Air Force Men retain their lead heading into the final quarter. Army managed to pull back slightly in the final quarter however it was not enough, with Air Force Men taking out the title with a 76-59 score line. High scorers for the game were Corporal Dave Portakiewicz with 22 points for Army and Corporal Dave Thomas with 20 points for Air Force Men.
This years MVP awards went to Leading Aircraftwoman Sam Eichler and Flying Officer Laine Pearce who received the most votes during the round robin and finals.
SADB is now training towards the ADBA Combined Services Competition, which is to be held in Albury-Wodonga during late November, early December.
Official tournament photos available at www.sadb.basketball.net.au > Gallery
Photography by AC David Cotton & AC Glynn Jones. Distribution Courtesy of 87SQN 92TIF Combat Camera Section, RAAF Edinburgh.
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Article: FLGOFF Laine Pearce, President SADB
23 Jul 09