Geraldton Buccaneers “destroy” Rockingham Flames
The Geraldton Buccaneers are expecting a hard slog against the South West Slammers this weekend after a triumphant start to the season on Saturday night.
Despite a few blunders, the Buccs dominated the Rockingham Flames in a decisive 86-70 win at Geraldton’s Activewest Stadium.
Not only did the victory validate Buccs coach Dayle Joseph in his first game since taking the reins from Ray Evans, it was also payback for his side, who lost to the Flames in game two of last season’s quarterfinal.
The Buccs only shot three of 27 from the three-point line, but they were able to cash in on the Flames’ errors, scoring 21 points off the side’s 25 turnovers.
Despite the Buccs’ less-than-perfect shooting and their 14 turnovers, it was this opportunism that made the difference.
“I thought we were a bit rusty, and so were Rockingham. It was a bit scrappy,” Joseph said.
“But defensively, we were pretty sound, and I think that’s what kept us in the game the whole time.
“We did really well on the rebounding, and we limited their second-opportunity shots. And we had a heap of offensive rebounds.”
Brayden Inger was a standout, scoring 26 points for the Buccs.
Joseph said he was also impressed with Marcus Alipate, Liam Hunt, Aaron Ralph and newcomer Brendan Dinardo.
Newcomer Willie O’Connor had a lacklustre night, scoring just three of 12 in the paint and none of four from the three-point line.
Flames coach Ryan Petrik said his side got “destroyed” by the Buccs.
“Trying to play like millionaires on the road is something you just can’t do,” he said.
“I thought our first position defensive was really good, but we just couldn’t get the ball back.
“Geraldton just murdered us on the blast.”
Joseph said the Slammers would be baying for blood at next Saturday’s game at Activewest Stadium.
“It’s always a tough game when Geraldton play Bunbury,” he said.
“There’s a bit of country rivalry there that dates back to when the Buccs first started, so it’s always competitive.”
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