THEY last met in an emotionally charged round one. This time will be completely different.
Ballarat Miners fired up for a 14-point win against Albury-Wodonga in the South East Australian Basketball League season opener at the Minerdome less than a fortnight after their initial American imports walked out on the club.
New Bandits’ import Jazzmar Ferguson tore into the Ballarat Holden Miners with six three-pointers.
The Miners have since bolstered the roster with exciting American Kodi Augustus and quality National Basketball League recruit Tim Coenraad, who debuted last week with 20 points, seven rebounds.
Each has added new dimensions to the Miners’ game.
Likewise, Ferguson and fellow import Mohamed Ntumba have continued to develop as standouts for the Bandits alongside Sydney-based recruits Alex Opacic and Ben Hollis.
Miners coach Guy Molloy said dramatic changes, for both teams, should make for an interesting clash.
“Last time we were undermanned but highly motivated and this time, they will be highly motivated to get one back,” Molloy said.
“For us, the first game our team gelled really strong because we were so highly motivated to win.
“The execution of players was a very high level because it was only our guys who had been together for awhile.
“The addition of Kodi and Tim should make us significantly more talented but we still need to work to get back to the same level of execution.”
Albury-Wodonga has notched up four wins from seven starts this season. The Miners enter the clash after an emphatic 20-point win against Canberra at the Minerdome last week.
At a glance:
WHAT: Miners v Bandits
WHEN: Tonight 8pm
Season: 3 wins, 3 losses
South conference: fifth
Season: 4 win, 3 losses
South conference: second