Sunbury Jets’ finals hopes all but gone

Sunbury Jets’ finals hopes are all but over after a heartbreaking loss to Latrobe City in Big V men’s division 1 basketball on Saturday night.

With two rounds to go, the Jets are only one game outside the eight.

But they are in 12th spot and have played one more game than most of the other sides fighting for the last two places in the finals.

They face second-placed Shepparton and fifth-placed Melton in the last two rounds.

On Saturday night, the Jets lost 88-87 to Latrobe City at Traralgon Basketball Stadium. The team was without import Javari Williams and several of the youth men, who were playing for the youth side at Sunbury at the same time. After an even first quarter, the home side got going in the second and led by 12 points at half-time.

The Jets slowly chipped at the lead in the second half and produced an even four-quarter shooting percentage but ultimately fell short.

They shot 22, 22, 22, 21 in each of the quarters at a shooting percentage of at least 43.8 per cent.

Harrison Salm, who has seen more court minutes in Williams’ absence in the past two weeks, top-scored with 26 points and had five assists.

Jets operations manager Andrew Summerville said Williams wouldn’t play in the last two rounds.

“Javari Williams and the Sunbury Basketball Association have agreed to part ways.

“Both parties agreed this was in the best interests of all involved.

“We thank Javari for his service to the association and wish him well in his future endeavours.”

The Jets women also went down to the Energy, losing 81-61 in what was a fairly one-sided game. It was a disappointing first half for the Jets who could muster only 16 points at a horrible 15 per cent shooting average.

By contrast, Energy was shooting at more than 50 per cent.

The Jets outscored them 45-36 in the second half but the game was effectively over by half-time.

Kayla Theodore and Sallee Cook top-scored with 13 points each for Sunbury.

It was better news for the Jets’ two youth sides, who had important victories on the way to finals and possible top-two finishes.

The youth men’s team defeated Coburg 72-60 in division 1 after leading from start to finish.

Billy Feben top-scored with 27 points.

The result keeps the Jets second on percentage ahead of Whittlesea.

In youth league women’s division 2, the Jets now sit on top of the ladder after a 56-49 win against Camberwell, the two sides switching positions.

The girls got off to a poor start in the first quarter with only seven points but finished the stronger of the teams. Alex Darby continued her good season, top-scoring with 15 points.