SIX junior Shoalhaven Tigers teams showed plenty of on-court improvement over the weekend, during the third round of the 2021 Southern Junior League.
The black and golds two under 14 boys teams, coached by Luke Royston and Leighvi Dennison, headed to Berkeley's Illawarra Sports Stadium.
Royston's division one Tigers opened their accounts with a tough 53-48 loss to Canberra Gunners White, before edging Gunners Navy by one-point 45-44.
The team's final game on Saturday resulted in a 65-51 loss to Albury.
Then on Sunday, the Tigers won another tight affair, this time by two points (38-36) against Illawarra.
These results secured the Tigers fourth spot on the ladder (behind Albury, Gunners Navy and Gunners White), after three rounds - booking their spot in the finals.
The club's division two side didn't enjoy as successful of a weekend on the hardwood, losing all four of their fixtures - including 70-14 against Albury, 57-24 to Moss Vale, 75-28 versus Wagga Wagga and 89-27 at the hands of Illawarra.
This sees the Tigers finish their SJL campaign in fifth and therefore missing finals.
Just up the road at the Snakepit, the Tigers' under 14s girls side, coached by Kelly Doll, opened their round three campaign with a gritty 46-37 victory against Wagga Wagga.
The division two side backed it up with wins against Illawarra (38-36) and Moss Vale (37-34) - to finish in second on the table behind the Blaze.
The Tigers' two under 16s sides had a home-court advantage during their matches - marking the first time they'd played representative Basketball NSW fixtures at the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre.
The under 16s boys side started the weekend's action with a 69-49 loss to Albury, before going down 101-54 to Wagga Wagga.
Then on Sunday, the Mark Alfarno-coached outfit didn't fare any better, falling 89-45 to Illawarra - to finish the regular season in third spot.
Their girl counterparts, led by Maddie Hanlon, returned slightly stronger results, winning one of their four contests.
They lost their game against Albury 100-65, before downing Illawarra 55-49 to finish Saturday's play on a high.
On Sunday, they lost to Wagga Wagga (104-36) and Moss Vale (68-37), to finish the season in sixth position.
The final Tigers team in action across the two days was Greg David's under 18s squad, who also played their matches at the new Den.
Despite their home court advantages, the black and golds lost all three division two matches, starting with an 84-71 defeat to Batemans Bay, followed by ones to Wagga Wagga (96-82) and Moss Vale (58-56) - to finish the campaign in fourth.
The competition will now transition into the finals weekend on May 22 and 23, with the Shoalhaven Indoor Sports Centre and Snakepit hosting the under 16s/18s and under 12/14s respectively.
Then on Sunday, the new Den will hold the third round of the under 16s and under 18s Barrengarry competition.
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