UBL Round 2 Game 1 Review - VU

26 March; Phina Newton


In the first doubleheader of UBL round two, we saw another two cross-town face off in Melbourne vs Victoria University. For our men’s team, it was their Homecoming for their 2023 UBL Championship win – and what better way to come home than with another win!

Women’s game

Off the back of a tough loss last week, our women’s team came out strong in their game against Victoria University (VU). VU got out of the blocks early thanks to the skipper Cassidhe Green, who had the first two points of the game and finished the first quarter with six points. It was Tegan Hindle however, who set the tone for the game with her defensive pressure, finishing the quarter with five steals, three of which she had within the first minute of the game. Melbourne University’s women’s team struggled with the full court pressure, but thanks to the steady hand of captain Leila Davis they were able to keep up offensively and only trailed by three at the first break.

After a break and a refreshed game plan, the Melbourne team came out firing, particularly Victoria Poulos who found the bottom of the net on plenty of occasions. Tegan Hindle was in similar form down the other end, but Melbourne dominated the defensive boards which prevented VU from getting second chance points. They finished the half with a strong 13-point lead.

Coming out of the main break it was VU who were on a mission to reign back the lead, and they did just that. Felicity Theodore may not have had a big impact on the scoresheet, but she was putting her body on the line for every loose ball and her teammates followed suit. By three quarter time, the margin was cut to six points, Melbourne held to ten points for the quarter – seven of which came from Leila Davis.

Melbourne was holding firm for the majority of the fourth quarter, Davis was doing it at both ends of the court and was well assisted by efforts from Meera Coburn and Leah Quartel, Coburn facing some very physical contact down low. Overall, it was a very physical game as players bumped bodies and hit the floor on numerous occasions. Unfortunately for Melbourne, the hustle plays from VU paid off and they were able to get a small lead down the stretch and ultimately win the game.

University of Melbourne 59 defeated by Victoria University 63

Key performers:
Leila Davis – 18pts, 11rbd
Victoria Poulos – 12pts, 3stl

Men’s game

In what was a huge game for our Melbourne University’s men’s team, they certainly performed. The reigning champions took the crowd by storm and took a commanding win over the Victoria University side. Led by Dihan Wiggett, who was joined by his co-captain Joshua McNally on court for the first time this season.

The beginning of the game saw a relatively level playing field, for VU, Dylan Wijanyanake was doing his best to keep his team in the game, and Duncan James was showing off his lethal left-hand hook. However, as the halftime break approached, Melbourne had a promising 18-point lead thanks to the duo of Wiggett and Kai Garnaut. Off the bench, James Avgerinos was holding his own, he nailed a buzzer-beater three to end the first quarter and another couple to his name in the second.

After being scoreless in the first half, Zak Martinez got hot from the field and put on a quick nine points for VU, as did Dylan Wijanyanake who took his tally to 16. This run from VU did enough to rattle the Melbourne team who were playing a little too comfortably.

Heading into the final term, Melbourne was determined to finish strong and took off in the last leg. Matt Power finished as top scorer with his work running the length of the floor paying off, he went from playing baseline in defence to sprinting in transition to get an easy two down the other end. It was a credit to his teammates who pushed the ball up the court, a total of 13 assists were dished out in the fourth.

Melbourne dominated VU in the end with a 33-point winning margin and all but one player hitting the scoreboard.

University of Melbourne 88 defeated Victoria University 55

Key performers:
Matt Power – 19pts, 8rbd
Kai Garnaut – 16pts, 11rbd, 4ast

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