The Perth Redbacks make their long-awaited return to Belmont Oasis this Saturday night and the stage is set for two fascinating matchups with quality Warwick Senators teams.
The Redbacks last played on their home floor way back in Round 5 which was now a month ago but the teams will be glad to be back at Belmont Oasis, and they will be hoping to be welcomed back by a strong turnout from the supporters on Saturday evening.
In the women’s contest, the Redbacks come into the game in sixth position with a 4-3 record while the Senators hold the same 4-3 record and are only in fifth spot courtesy of percentage.
The Redbacks are coming off a loss on the road to the Cockburn Cougars by 13 points last Saturday night but prior to that, they beat the Magic in Mandurah by nine points which came on the back of a double-header in Round 6 with a 17-point win over East Perth and one-point defeat to Rockingham.
Meanwhile, the Senators arrive at Belmont full of confidence on the back of an impressive 95-79 win against the Perry Lakes Hawks last Saturday night and then the week prior to that they were able to hammer the Lakeside Lightning by 51 points.
That is some ominous form for Warwick to bring into the game but the Redbacks will be confident of playing well back on their home floor and of shutting down the main Senators’ weapons.
There are plenty of dangers on the Senators team that the Redbacks will be mindful of and that’s always going to be led by 2019 MVP Stacey Barr. But Nicole Jorre de St Jorre is still running the point and Tayla Hepburn is a strong inside presence.
There’s an exciting group of young players coming through with Warwick too led by Chloe Forster, Mackenzie Clinch-Hoycard, Jayda Clark and Caitlyn Jones who the Redbacks will need to be mindful of.
That all leads into the men’s contest with the Redbacks coming into the clash from ninth position with a 3-4 record while the Senators are 6-1 in third spot.
The Redbacks are fresh off an impressive win last Saturday night beating the Cockburn Cougars 89-72 at Wally Hagan Stadium for their third win so far in the NBL1 West season.
There was a lot to like in that performance from Perth with Zac Gattorna producing a season-best performance with 26 points and seven rebounds on 4/8 shooting from three-point territory.
Louis Timms also had 19 points and 10 rebounds, Tevin Jackson 15 points, six assists and five boards, and Lachlan Bertram 10 points.
After winning the 2020 West Coast Classic, the Senators have been impressive again so far in 2021 having won six of their seven matches. The depth of their stars and the mix of youth and experience in their group coached by Mike Ellis makes them hard to stop.
With the quality and experience of Cody Ellis, Caleb Davis and Justin King along with Corban Wroe as point guard, then Ash Litterick inside and then with the contributions they get from Ethan Elliott, Alier Riak and Jay Thwaites, and the Redbacks will have be on top of their game on Saturday night.
But the Redbacks have the added motivation of celebrating an historic night with captain and point guard, 2017 championship winner and the league’s all-time assists leader Joel Wagner becoming the club’s games record holder as he overtakes Matthew Earp’s 364 games played in red.