Round 2 West Coast Classic Preview

The Perth Redbacks are at home at Belmont Oasis this Friday night for the first time in the West Coast Classic to host the Cockburn Cougars in another double-header weekend for the Spiders.

Round 2 of the West Coast Classic sees the Redbacks host the Cockburn Cougars on Friday night with the women’s contest getting underway at 6.30pm with the men’s clash to follow at 8.30pm.

Again there is then little time for the Redbacks to rest as they back up on Saturday night with a trip to Bendat Basketball Centre to take on the Perry Lakes Hawks. The women’s match tips off at 6pm with the men’s contest to follow at 8pm.

The Redbacks women had a rollercoaster Round 1 to begin the West Coast Classic starting last Friday night with a 75-49 defeat to the Joondalup Wolves before bouncing back with a 79-46 victory against the Mandurah Magic.

Both games were away from home and you can’t get much further apart than Joondalup and Mandurah unless you are heading to the country, but a 36-point loss followed by a 33-point win would have left coach Craig Allen somewhat scratching his head.

On Friday night the Redbacks struggled shooting just 17/67 from the field at 25 per cent, 4/21 from three-point land at 19 per cent and even 11/22 at 50 per cent from the foul line.

It was much better on Saturday as they went 26/73 at 35 per cent, 10/33 at 30 per cent and 17/30 at 56 per cent.

They also cut down 26 turnovers to 18 from the two games and would have taken great heart from the way they were able to perform against the Magic.

Brooke Malone was one player who was especially impressive across both games combining for 26 points while only playing 29 minutes in total.

The Redbacks now get ready to host the Cougars on Friday night. Cockburn is coming off a Round 1 loss on the road to the Rockingham Flames.

Despite that result, Haylee De Sousa, Jodee Sontay, Kahlia Morgan, Emma Burke, Tahlia Fejo and Jesni Cooper help make up a dangerous Cougars line-up.

The Redbacks women will then turn their focus to the Lady Hawks on Saturday night.

Deanna Black’s Hawks put in a strong showing last Friday before narrowly losing to the Warwick Senators so they will be desperate to bounce back on Saturday. But they will have also played on Friday on the road to the Lakeside Lightning.

In terms of the Redbacks men, they also found the going tough last Friday night against the Joondalup Wolves before a solid bounce back win on Saturday away to the Mandurah Magic.

Perth’s season began losing to Lee Roberts and the Wolfpack 98-80 on Friday but the Redbacks responded strongly to beat Aaron Trahair’s Mandurah on Saturday 83-72.

While it was a win on Saturday for CJ Jackson’s men, he would know there’s still plenty of improvement to come in the form of shooting from three better after they went 3/18 and taking better care of the ball following 22 turnovers.

But there were plenty of encouraging signs with Zac Gattorna putting up 20 points as did Marshall Nelson while Caleb White had 16 points and Tevin Jackson 13 to go with eight rebounds and three assists.

Now the Redbacks start their Round 2 of the West Coast Classic against the Cougars who are coming off a loss last Saturday to the Rockingham Flames.

But it’s a talented Cockburn line-up including the new addition of Luke Travers who Jackson is fully aware of how good the Perth Wildcats development player can be.

“I think Luke is a talent, he is a really talented player,” Jackson said.

“He does have the tools to make it whatever level he wants to, which could even be the NBA eventually if he continues on the way he is.”

The Redbacks then tackle the Hawks on Saturday night at Bendat Basketball Centre with Tevin Jackson coming up against the group he was part of that went all the way to the semi finals last year in the SBL.

Perry Lakes’ men started the West Coast Classic with wins last weekend against the Warwick Senators and Goldfields Giants.

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