Northern Junior League Finals 6th/7th August - all results from Tamworth
Port Macquarie Dolphin's junior representative teams traveled to Tamworth on the weekend to contest the 2016 Finals of the Northern Junior League. After the earlier 4 rounds of competition, the Dolphins had 7 teams still in contention being the U12 men & U12 women, the U14 men's teams in both Division 1 and Division 2, the U16 women & U16 men in Division 2, and the U18 men's Division 1 team.
Our U12s featured first on Saturday, but unfortunately both teams bowed out in their preliminary finals. The U12 women went down in a very tight contest to Bellingen, 39-34 . The U12 men had a similarly close, and heart-breaking defeat at the hands of the local Tamworth side, 35-33. Both U12 teams featured many players who were experiencing their first ever season of representative basketball, and coaches Nathan McClennan and David Lynch were extremely pleased at how much their teams had learned from the year's experience.
The U14 boys in division 1 were next up, and easily dispatched the local Tamworth outfit with a strong 56-32 result. However, that put the team up against a tougher Bellingen team in the subsequent semi-final, where they went down 52-34. The Division 2 U14 men's team were more successful, and continued their regular season winning streak by securing their grand final berth with a 47-32 win over another Bellingen outfit.
The U16 women were up next and fought hard to secure a grand final berth by beating Quirindi 77-64 in a high-scoring match. The U16 Men then had a strong showing against a tough Tamworth team in their quarter final, and came up with a deserving 44-42 win. They then suffered a similar fate to the U14 boys with a 67-48 loss to the Ocean Shores Sharks in their semi-final.
The U18 Men were the last to vie for a grand final berth on Saturday and faced the previously undefeated Tamworth Thunderbolts. However the Dolphins played their best game of the season to secure themselves a grand final spot, relegating the local team to a second-chance final by winning 59-58.
On Sunday, 3 Dolphins' teams were left to fight in their respective Grand Finals. The U18 men were competing in the first grand final of the day, but unfortunately couldn't replicate the heroics from Saturday. In the end, the local crowd support and strong shooting from Tamworth was too strong for the Dolphins who went down 76-61. The U16 women found the same stumbling block against a local team with strong crowd support. After fighting hard all game, they eventually went down to Tamworth 66-49 in their grand final.
The U14 men had a return match against the Bellingen Braves in the Division 2 grand final. And as they'd done all year, the Dolphins team proved too strong and finished their 2016 season un-defeated with a 45-34 grand final scoreline. Port Macquarie's Jarvis Page was named the MVP of the final.
The PMBA representative teams now take a break for a couple of months before selection trials for the 2017 season commence in the month of October. For news and notices of upcoming selection opportunities, keep abreast of all the latest information at the PMBA website or Facebook