SBL: Joondalup Wolves leading the pack


Shani Amos drives to the basket for Joondalup. Picture: Serene Maisey
Shani Amos drives to the basket for Joondalup. Picture: Serene Maisey

JOONDALUP remains the hunted side of the men’s State Basketball League competition as it heads into its second double-header weekend of the month.

The Wolves have played the least games of the league with 11, but remain top of the table with an 81.62 winning percentage compared with 76.92 for the second-placed Cockburn Cougars, who have played 13 games.

This weekend’s clashes against Lakeside away on Friday and Geraldton at home on Saturday will come close to evening up the Wolves’ games total with the rest of the competition, giving the best idea yet of where they stand.

Joondalup’s one-off game at Arena Joondalup last Friday was a success, with the women’s and men’s sides both victorious against the Stirling Senators.

Greg Hire takes contact. Picture: Serene Maisey

The Wolves administration heavily promoted the clash, drawing the biggest crowd of the season to preview the side’s future home.

Joondalup is expected to move from Joondalup Basketball Stadium to Arena Joondalup for the 2018 season.

While, in the lead-up to the clash, chief executive Cameron Britt had high hopes for a 900-plus attendance, the final figure of about 550 still pleased him.

He said the event was “clearly a success and well worth the significant promotion”.

The crowd number was more than double the average attendance of home games last year.

“We were very satisfied with that figure, it gave the atmosphere a really good edge,” he said.

“The feedback from fans and our corporate partners alike was very positive, and only grows out anticipation and excitement for the move to our new facility late next year.”

The men’s side claimed the Merv Day Shield with a 109-91 victory over Stirling in what was dubbed the Battle of Joondalup because of the Senators’ connection to the City through Warwick Stadium.

Trian Iliadis top scored with 29 points, while Greg Hire harked back to his dominant pre-NBL days at the Wolves with 18 rebounds.

The women’s side won 71-47, with Klara Wischer (19 points) top scoring and Amy Kidner (10 boards) the leading rebounder.