Gazette Sport Preview: Cougars on hunt for SBL grand final spot, Bulldogs look for four in a row plus Fremantle Hockey Club and soccer


East Fremantle’s Jake Schleicher is tackled during the win over Perth. Phil Elliott/PixEll Photography
East Fremantle’s Jake Schleicher is tackled during the win over Perth. Phil Elliott/PixEll Photography

Basketball (SBL)

THE Cockburn Cougars men’s side continue its quest for a SBL championship with a trip to Geraldton.

The Cougars, our last local side still in with a chance of a championship after both local women’s sides were knocked out in the quarterfinals, tackle the Buccaneers in game one tomorrow night.

The number one seeds did not have it all their own way to get to this point.

Despite finishing as the highest ranked team after the regular season, the Cougars were pushed to a game three which they claimed 130-115.

The Buccaneers, which finished the regular season in fourth position, overcame the Rockingham Flames in two.

They won game one 107-105, before taking game two and securing their passage into the next stage with a 107-101 victory.

Game one will take place at 7.30pm.

Game two will be held at Wally Hagan Stadium on Saturday, August 27, with a third pencilled in for 12pm August 28 if it the series goes the stretch.

Football (WAFL)

SOUTH Fremantle can do cross-town rival East Fremantle a massive favour by accounting for East Perth tomorrow.

The Bulldogs tackle the Royals at Leederville Oval, with a win likely to seal a second placed league finish with just two home and away rounds left.

Off the back of three straight wins, the Bulldogs will be confident of another with the Royals having lost their last two to sit outside the top five.

The Sharks currently hold fifth on percentage, ahead of their clash with Claremont at East Fremantle Oval on Saturday.

The Sharks moved back into the premiership race with a 49-point win over Perth.

Brett Peake and James Bristow were in great form booting four goals each in the win, while Liam Anthony gathered 36 disposals and kicked a goal.

A big win, combined with a Royals loss, could guarantee the Sharks enter the final weekend with a finals berth locked away.

Hockey

The Fremantle Hockey Club is in the final stretch of the season, with only three games to go.

Fremantle’s Promotion 1 women have so much on the line as it looks to hold top spot on the ladder amid strong competition from Hale, South West Strikers and Southern River.

It will have to avoid complacency as it faces its easiest game on the run home this weekend against seventh-placed Peel Rebels.

Peel caused a hiccup for the Magpies in Round 4, drawing the game 2-2, before Fremantle were able to turn the tables and beat it 4-1 in Round 10.

The players will be looking to continue their high intensity and good form as they prepare for tougher matchups against Whitford and Southern River in the final two rounds.

Finals will be a tougher ask for Fremantle’s League men, currently sitting in seventh position.

It also faces a tough run home with matches against YMCC, Old Guildfordians Mundaring and WASPS to round out the season in a fight to stay alive in the competition.

With YMCC sitting in fifth, it is a must win game for Fremantle this weekend and history is in its favour, having won 2-1 in the only other matchup this year.

Fremantle’s Promotion 1 women take on Peel Rebels at the Perth Hockey Stadium from 1.30pm tomorrow, while the League men play YMCC from 7pm tonight at the same venue.

Soccer (NPL WA)

With finals no longer an option, Cockburn City will be playing for pride in its penultimate game of the season against ECU Joondalup.

In what was easily one of its best wins of the season, Cockburn downed ECU Joondalup 4-0 in Round 10 and will be looking to repeat the feat when it takes to the field tomorrow.

Cockburn City plays ECU Joondalup from 3pm August 20 at the ECU Joondalup Football Stadium.