Four local basketball stars have helped Victoria to an eighth straight Under-20 women’s national basketball title.
After a slow start to the championships, which included a loss to Queensland, the Victorian team came up big went it counted.
Avenging their pool round loss to Queensland, the Victorians claimed the title 72-62 on Sunday afternoon, to keep the remarkable record in tact.
Monegeetta’s Kara Tessari led from the front, captaining the team in her last junior national championships.
Also a member of last year’s winning team, she used her WNBL experience when needed, hitting some big shots.
She hit nine points in the final and averaged that across the championships.
Former Altona Gators junior Cassidy Gould and former Werribee player Maddi Puli, who were part of the under-18 Vic Metro team last season, stepped up as bottom age players this year.
Gould scored 11 points in the final, while Puli scored seven points.
Gould’s Altona Gators club mate Kobe King-Hawea was also part of the team.
It’ll be a big few weeks for King-Hawea, who has been selected for the fourth annual Basketball Without Borders Global Camp.
She’s one of just five Australian’s invited to the event that will be held in America.
The loss to Queensland early in the week, set the stage for the Victorian’s title winning run.
Victorian coach Katrina Hibbert said they put a lot of work into getting the right game plan to come out on top in the final.
“We scouted our butts off last night –we felt like we had some good footage,” she said after the game.
“We knew that when we faced them last time we were fatigued, so a lot of the defensive errors were made.
“We adjusted, so after that game we got a little bit more time to look at ourselves and see where we could fix some of our problems.”
Hibbert said the championship was reward for all the hard work the side had put in.
“We are kind of blessed with Victoria that we have a lot of depth and so post-wise we still have depth even if we were a little bit smaller.
“It’s a special group and I think it’s a credit to their parents for the way they handle themselves as they’re so professional.”
It was a good weekend for the Victorians, with all four teams in action claiming national titles.