WABL Grand Final Wrap Up – U18 Div 3 Boys

How good is a Grand Final where you’re guaranteed a win because both the teams in it are from your club? That’s exactly what happened in the U18 Division 3 Boys which saw our 18-3 Grey team taking on 18-3 White.

The two teams had vastly contrasting seasons. Maybe it’s a Luke thing because, like his U16-3 counterpart Luke Simonette, U18-3 White coach Luke Notley found himself dealing with season-ending and season-limiting injuries before grading even started … and this continued all the way to the Grand Final. Despite all this, 18-3 White still managed to finish the season second on the ladder. Brandon Riley’s 18-3 Grey team had a smoother time of things, went undefeated through the first half of the season and maintained that good form right to the end to finish top of the ladder.

With both teams qualifying straight through to the semi-finals, our hope was that they’d both make their way into the grand final – but their respective semi-final opponents had different ideas! Both our Redbacks teams trailed for large chunks of their semis, but both found a way to ensure that when the full-time buzzer sounded, they were on the right side of the scoresheet.

This set up a Grand Final between a White team missing point guard Jesse Wilcox, against a full-strength Grey team.

Signs were worrying for Redbacks White when the margin got out by as much as 17 in the second quarter and held steady around the 14-16 mark for most of the second and third. But to their credit, Redbacks White fought hard to get within 7 points by three-quarter time and within 5 with only a few minutes left to play. In the end, however, Redbacks Grey was too strong and hung on to record an 8-point win in a very fast-paced and entertaining game.

Congrats to both coaches: Luke Notley (White), Brandon Riley (Grey) and Brandon’s assistants Michael Riley and Jordan Deegan. It was exciting to see two Redbacks teams play each other in a Grand Final and do so with great spirit and respect.

Congrats also to Harper Mitchell-Oehlers whose 27-point first half for Redbacks Grey broke the game open and saw him awarded GF MVP.

Well done to our U18 Division 3 Boys Grey – 2021 WABL Champions:

  • Tom Thorpe
  • Ethan Saliacus
  • Malik Powell
  • Harper Mitchell-Oehlers
  • Kade McMillan
  • Ollie Watkins
  • Melvin Nwankwo
  • Jonah Muparutsa
  • Jake Ashworth
  • Billy Pearl
  • Robert Watson (TO)
  • Stefan Zugic (TO)

And well done to our U18 Division 3 Boys White – 2021 WABL Runners-up:

  • Finn Warner
  • Luis Uribe
  • Oliver Pedley
  • Ethan McIntosh
  • Miguel Chaitika
  • Jesse Wilcox
  • Darren Fernandez
  • Anthony Pelle
  • Lachlan Taylor
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