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Geraldton Buccaneers face renewed Suns in early test of top four credentials

Headshot of Jake Santa Maria
Jake Santa MariaGeraldton Guardian
Buccs' Ryan Blanchett and Eastern Suns Cooper Lowe.
Camera IconBuccs' Ryan Blanchett and Eastern Suns Cooper Lowe. Credit: Arctic_Moon_Photography

The Geraldton Buccaneers will enjoy a second dose of home crowd support as they face the Eastern Suns in this weekend’s clash.

After a resounding performance over the Warwick Senators last Saturday, the Buccs will be hoping for more of the same to help secure their place in the top four.

The Buccs and Suns both boast 3-2 records though Buccs have a far superior percentage, with the Suns the only team with a winning record to have a percentage below 100.

They are coming off a loss to the Willetton Tigers while the Buccs are starting to put together form resembling last year with back-to-back wins over finals contenders from last year.

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The Buccs will also welcome back Zac Gattorna with coach Dayle Joseph confirming he will return to the line-up after missing last week with illness.

“Zac will definitely be back in, he trained well on Tuesday and everyone else is looking pretty good so other than the addition of Zac it will be an unchanged line-up from last week,” Joseph said.

The Suns have been a surprise package so far this season after winning only four games and narrowly avoiding the wooden spoon in the past two seasons, with guard Joe Cook-Green posting big numbers early on.

“He’s an exceptional guard and he’s had the ball in his hands a lot,” Joseph said.

“They have some other pretty good guards with the likes of Albert Almanza and Reece Maxwell and they like to play on-the-perimeter five-out basketball which will be a test for our man-on-man defence.”

With the Rockingham Flames 5-0 and Perry Lake Hawks 5-1 already checking out at the front of the competition, this weekend presents a key opportunity for the Buccs to break out of the early season midfield melee.

“It’s something we spoke about last week before the Senators — the importance of beating teams with similar records to you. It sort of gives you a two-game advantage in a way,” he said.

“Our goal was to make that top four and anything more than that is a bonus, I still think we’re a few weeks off of being at our absolute peak.

“We’ve got a lot of upside still and some tough away trips coming up next month will be the key.”

The Buccs will tip-off against the Suns at 7pm on Saturday at Activewest Stadium.

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