NBL1 South Players of the Week – Round 6

THE National Basketball League (NBL)1 South competition returned over the weekend, and once again there was plenty of high-quality action taking place across Tasmania and Victoria.

Now six rounds in, the disparity between the sides in contention and those who appear destined for a tough 2024 campaign continues to grow, while other teams are beginning to find their feet after slow starts to the fixture.

Both the men’s and women’s division had a plethora of stat-stuffing performances, including big scoring efforts and massive double-doubles.

With that in mind, Rookie Me Central will be taking a look at the standout performances from both divisions, after some big numbers were posted over the weekend. This time, Tanner Krebs and Cierra Dillard proved to be the best performers with some enormous numbers produced throughout Round 6 of the 2024 season.

Tanner Krebs (Sandringham Sabres) vs. Geelong United

33 points, 13 rebounds, two assists

The Sandringham Sabres managed to produce an 11-point win over Geelong United as the two sides went head to head at The Geelong Arena on Saturday night.

It was a tight affair in the first half, with the Sabres holding a handy eight-point lead at the main change, in a contest that looked as if it would go down to the wire, as the home side continued to stick around. However, Sandringham delivered a defining third quarter to stretch its buffer out to 15 at three-quarter time, and although Geelong won the final term, the damage was already done.

Currently in the midst of a hot start to the fixture, Krebs proved his star status in the league once again with another outstanding performance in Sandringham’s win. He was the game’s leading scorer with 33 points, with the stretch forward firing from behind the arc to prove troublesome for the defence.

Krebs splashed home eight triples on 12 attempts in a tremendous display of efficient long range shooting, finding his rhythm when shooting the ball and helping build Sandringham’s lead in the first three quarters.

He was also strong on the glass, particularly when it came to defensive rebounds, where he was able to help his side secure another possession. The big man pulled down 13 boards and played a vital role in ensuring the Sabres won the rebounding battle by eight.

Having delivered consistently strong performances to start the season, Krebs produced his best on Saturday night, and was a key factor in the win.

Cierra Dillard (Melbourne Tigers) vs. Hobart Chargers

46 points, eight rebounds, five assists, one steal, one block

Dillard was just about unstoppable as the Tigers snuck past the Chargers to the tune of four points at Hobart Netball and Sports Centre on Friday night.

It was a tense battle, with the Chargers storming out of the gates while Melbourne struggled to find its groove on the offensive end, trailing by 10 points at the first change. The home side led by seven points at the final change, and were looking to hold off the Tigers for an impressive win. However, the visitors delivered a match-winning fourth term, snagging a 72-68 victory.

Dillard’s performance was undoubtedly defining, and was the difference offensively, accounting for more than half of Melbourne’s score and putting the team on her back to drag them to victory.

She posted a magnificent 46 points on 15/24 shooting from the field, carrying the Tigers with her ability to take charge on the offensive end and generate scores for Melbourne. Although Dillard did her best work from two-point land, she landed five triples and could stretch the floor with long range shots.

She was also able to get to the free throw line with ease, knocking down 11 shots from the charity stripe on 15 attempts, forcing the defence to defend illegally and punishing them accordingly.

It was one of the best offensive showings from any NBL1 player this season, and was the biggest factor as the Tigers snuck home.

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