Melton Thoroughbreds youngest stars exceeded expectations by winning two titles at the Basketball Victoria Country 2017 Country Championships in Bendigo recently.

The Thoroughbreds entered teams in the under-12s division 2 girls competition and division 5 boys premiership competition – both teams held their nerve and won their grand final.

Melton was the only club to win more than one title at the championships.

The win in the girl’s competition was especially pleasing for the Thoroughbreds – it was the first time the club has entered a girls under-12 team. They defeated Colac 51-25 in the grand final.

Coach Gabby Eaton said that while it had taken a while to build the team, the hard work had been amply rewarded.

“I really didn’t know what to expect,” she said. “The country sides seem to be stronger than a lot of the metro teams.

“There was a lot of sides which were a lot faster and taller. A lot of the girls were a foot taller than our team.”

She said the championship win was a big thing for the development of basketball for girls in Melton. “I think it topped off what was a very long weekend,” she said.

“Each team pushed us on the way to making the grand final. They played 10 games across the weekend.

“All the girls were very excited and got to take to the court in the grand final.”

Eaton said that after their win, the girls watched the boys win a much closer grand final against Horsham, 43-35.

She said she hoped the success of the girls’ team would see more girls get involved in basketball.

She once played for the Thoroughbreds’ women’s side, but the club hasn’t had a Big V women’s team for a few years.

“Hopefully, these girls can continue on and into youth league and build up from there.

“It would be fantastic to see it [women’s Big V] come back and give young girls local players to look up to. Hopefully these girls can be part of Big V for Melton.”

Earlier this year, the Thoroughbreds’ under-18 boys team won the division 3 country championships with a comprehensive 75-56 win against Ararat Redbacks.