IT CAME down to Xavier Cooks’ dunk in the final five seconds that ended Ballarat Miners’ six-game winning streak.
In stellar form all month, the GMHBA Miners made a strong fightback for a 13-point win against Canberra Gunners in South East Australian Basketball League action on Saturday night.
The Basketball Australia Centre of Excellence proved their undoing on Sunday.
Play was a complete wrestle for control.
A slow start put the Miners nine points down at the first break and 16 down early in the second quarter before they clawed back in trademark fashion, similarly as they had when 14 points down at half-time a night earlier against the Gunners.
However, BA Coe refused to relent. Four times scores were levelled in the final term after the Miners had held an eight-point lead at three-quarter-time.
The Miners – via Gibcus, Horton, Fisher and Sobey – were smashing BA Coe on the boards but the talent team proved sharper shooters, more accurate from fewer field goal attempts and deadly from beyond the arc.
The Miners’ big scoring specialist Roy Booker converted one three-pointer from eight attempts, despite having chalked up six in his 40-point haul a night earlier.
Point guard Anthony Fisher, quiet against Canberra, was resurgent against BA CoE and nailed five three-pointers from six shots in his 22 points.
New Miner Nathan Sobey was consistent across the road-trip double-header.
Sobey made 12 points and five rebounds against the Gunners and backed it up with 17 points and seven rebounds on Sunday.
This was the Miners’ third straight week of double-header weekends, with five of six games played on the road.
The Miners remain on the road next week to meet Albury-Wodonga.
They aim to polish off a gruelling month in which their impressive form has ranked them third in a tough east conference.