State Championship Men:
The Knox Raiders State Championship Men couldn’t overcome a slow start to their game at Casey on the weekend, falling to the Cavaliers 76-86. The Cavaliers raced away to a 27-16 first period lead and although Knox battled hard after that, slimming the margin at the main break, Casey were not going to drop this game on their home court. Turnovers were very costly for Knox committing 21 of them as opposed to only 10 by the Cav’s. Casey import Raheem Lemons had a sensational game for the home side with 20 points, shooting at 9/14 from the field. Ryan Oirbans had an excellent game for Knox with 2
25 points and 9 boards shooting an outstanding % from the field hitting 12/13 shots for 92%.
State Championship Women:
An exciting road-win for the Knox Raiders who have defeated Eltham Wildcats 65-58 in overtime! With scores tied at 56-56 apiece Raiders Leah Santamaggio nailed a three to send the game into extra time and from there the momentum was all with Knox. It was a 9-2 run in the extra period for the Raiders who come away with an excellent win. Georgia Stirton led the scoring for Knox with 15 points and import Taylor Mathers is settling into the team well, scoring 11 points and pulling down 7 boards. WNBL star Alice Kunek was easily Eltham’s best with 26 points and 15 boards. Knox now moves to 2-0 to start the season and with both wins being on the road things are looking positive for the Raiders.
Victorian Youth Championship Women:
Despite being outscored 22-11 in the final period, the Knox Raiders Victorian Youth Championship Women’s team had done enough work early on to hold on for a 75-67 victory over the Hawthorn Magic on Saturday night.
It was another well-rounded performance from the Raiders who had 10 individual’s scorers, being led by Maighan Hedge with 16 points including 50% from the field and 2/3 from beyond the arc. Eliana Bravington had 15 points and was the game leading rebounder pulling down 12 boards.
For the Magic Bella Niven-Brown topped the scoring for the visitors with 17 points and 8 boards.
The win continues the Raiders unbeaten start early on in the season with a 2-0 record, with the Magic dropping back to 1-1.
Victorian Youth Championship Men:
The Knox Raiders Victorian Youth Championship Men have lost their second consecutive close game, this time to McKinnon 66-67 after a Cougars foul shot sealed the game for the visitors. The Raiders led by as many as 13 but McKinnon kept fight back, snatching an important road win to improve their record to 2-1. The Cougars did a good job scoring inside, outscoring the Raiders in the paint 48 points to 34. Knox took more shots in the game than their opponents but at 38% compared to McKinnon’s 43%. Colin Shaw and Malik Meunier both led the scoring for the Raiders with 16 points apiece with the Cougars led by Luke Peynenborg also with 16.
After dropping two close games one would have forgiven Knox for being flat heading into their Sunday game, the second of a double header weekend at Dandenong. In a real credit to the young Raiders line-up and coaching staff, this was far from the case with Knox winning their first game of 2018 with a 78-59 win over the Rangers. It was a blistering first half from the Raiders who put the game beyond doubt in the first half, racing away to a 44-22 lead at the main break. Despite an improved performance from Dandenong after half-time Knox were able to hold off any attempts at a comeback to pick up the much-needed win. Liam Hanafin led the scoring for Knox with 18 points, with Jake Tranter scoring 17 as Dandenong’s best.