Kyneton Tigers continue to fight hard, but failed to come away with the points in the Country Basketball League north west competition.
It was a case of double disappointment for the Tigers at the weekend, losing to Mildura Heat on Saturday night and again to the Castlemaine Cannons on Sunday.
For Tigers coach Mick Ryan it’s a case of close, but not close enough.
“Our record doesn’t show how hard we’re working or where we’re at,” he said.
“The players have played their hearts out.
“I can’t fault their efforts and they executed really well. It’s a shame that we couldn’t get some wins, but I’m really proud of everyone’s efforts.”
It was heartbreak for the Tigers on Saturday night, losing to Mildura Heat 81-79.
Ryan said a couple of lapses cost them dearly.
“A few things didn’t go our way,” he said.
“I didn’t think we scored the last few minutes. They hit some huge shots to tie it up and then go ahead.”
Matt Quinn was a workhorse for the undermanned Tigers, scoring 25 points.
Ryan said the side lost focus early on in their game against the Cannons the following day after their loss.
“It took a toll and we started flat,” he said.
“We have momentary lapses and had a few today.
“We shot extremely well and fought back.
“But once you’re behind and trying to come back it gets harder.”
The Tigers lost 77-65.
Louis Bongiovanni, Mark Colverd and Matthew Bourke scored 12 points each.
Ryan said Bongiovanni took a big workload at the weekend as there was a lack of depth in the guard position due to players being away.
He said Bourke was again powerful in defence and Carson McSweeney and Tom Scott had played well across both matches.
“The main core 10 players were asked to do a lot of work on the weekend,” Ryan said.
“Everyone who comes in and plays has an impact.”
The Tigers sit sixth after eight matches, with one win.
They face the Bendigo Braves on Saturday night, their second match-up in two weeks and will then be back for their last three matches in the new year.
Ryan said they had not given up hope for finals as the competition is so close.
“Every team is competitive and any team can beat each other,” he said.
“We talked about having to be mentally switched on the whole game. Against Bendigo we were with them until the last couple of minutes.
“We’ll still have a few guys out, but fingers crossed we can improve on last week.”
The Tigers women’s side had a bye. They will also play Bendigo before the men’s side on Saturday night.
Ryan said they hoped a big crowd would come out to see both sides play.