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Triple digits for Wallan Panthers’ men

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Pam Kiriakidis
Pam Kiriakidis
Pam Kiriakidis has worked as a journalist at the North Central Review since 2022, with a particular focus on the City of Whittlesea and stories for the Whittlesea Review. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Media and Communications majoring in journalism and focuses on politics, community, and health with the occasional niche sports story finding its way in front of her.

Round five of the Big V competition saw Wallan Panthers’ division two men cheer for victory at the final buzzer on Sunday’s home game. 

The men’s team gathered at the end with its young supporters after securing a 101 to 89 win against Collingwood, who put up a good fight. 

While Wallan had dominated most of the game, leading the first two quarters, the Panthers still had to prove they were on top in the fourth quarter.

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Assistant coach Steve Griffiths said the team had ‘dug in’ when the Panthers were down around eight by the end of the third quarter.

“It was a game of runs, we started off really well, [Collingwood] they were a good team, they came back at us and challenged us,” he said.

“I think it was a 37 or 38 point to 19 in the last quarter, so it [was] a really great defensive effort that turned into a great offensive effort.”

Wallan’s Dominic Bruno and Arcaim Lallemand showcased impressive basketball, followed by their teammates who kept the consistency going. 

The triple digits were made possible by Wallan’s import Arcaim Lallemand securing a two-point layup in the final few seconds.

Round six of the competition will be another home game for Wallan against neighbours Craigieburn on Saturday night.

Going into next weekend’s match, Griffiths said the game plan would remain the same.   

“It looks that the focus won’t change, it’ll be more of the same, we got to allow ourselves to be free on offence, but also to lock in hard on defence,” Griffiths said. 

Women

Despite the seven-point loss, Panther’s women still played an impressive game against Western Port in round five of the Big V competition.

It was a slow start for the Panthers, allowing Western Port to take over, but the side made a comeback in the last quarter.

Coach Jarrod Bridge said slow starts was an issue for the side.

“Our starts are always our problem, we’re a bit slow to get energised and get our points on the board, our first quarter scoring eight points probably what hurt us really, if we can start better, we’ll probably be alright,” he said.

While the team is still trying to find its identity, Bridge said the team were working well together.

“We’re trying to find our identity but otherwise pretty good,” he said.

“The first couple of weeks we’ve been up and down, we had some really tough games, and the last two, three weeks, we’ve kind of figured out we’re not actually a bad team, we’re playing together really well.”

Women Panthers will go up against Coburg this Saturday in round six.

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