NBL1 South Players of the Week – Round 7

ANOTHER weekend of National Basketball League (NBL)1 action has wrapped up, and in Round 7 of the South competition, the contenders stood up with some strong team performances once again.

The league is now at the halfway mark of the 2024 season, and there are plenty of sides in contention for a spot in the postseason. That is particularly the case in the men’s division, where sixth and 11th are separated by just percentage.

Over the span of Saturday and Sunday, a whopping 30 games took place over the two divisions with each side given ample opportunity to improve their ladder standing.

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, Owen Foxwell and Chloe Bibby were the stars of the show with a pair of massive double-doubles.

Owen Foxwell (Eltham Wildcats) vs. Sandringham Sabres

23 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists, two steals

Eltham’s exciting young guard was at his creative best despite his Wildcats losing to the Sabres by five points at Montmorency Secondary College on Saturday night.

The Wildcats looked in a strong position after three quarters of play, leading by three points with 10 minutes on the clock and coming off a third period that they won. However, the final term belonged to Sandringham, with the visitors outscoring Eltham 26-18 to storm home and snag a 90-85 victory on the road.

Foxwell was a big reason why the Wildcats were in a winning position in the first place, almost delivering a triple-double and filling several needs for the team.

He had an equal game-high 23 points, and although he struggled with efficiency at times, the guard was still crucial for Eltham on the scoring front. Foxwell shot 7/21 from the field, but was well-defended on a lot of those attempts and could have had a bigger night.

On the glass, the guard flew in third up and collected the loose ball better than his peers, and was the only Eltham player to record double-digit rebounds. He pulled down five on the offensive end and another five on the defensive end to post 10 for the match.

Foxwell has proven himself as a crafty playmaker in the past, and eight dimes was reflective of his passing capabilities. Using screens to create space, his exit passes were well-timed and accurate, freeing up his fellow Wildcats to create more scoring opportunities.

It was a gutsy showing from Foxwell, who was almost a match-winner and stuffed the stat sheet for the Wildcats in his best showing of the 2024 season.

Chloe Bibby (Ballarat Miners) vs. Melbourne Tigers

37 points, 12 rebounds, four assists, one steal

Bibby was one of the biggest factors for the Miners as they handed the Tigers a nine-point defeat as the two sides went head to head at Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre on Saturday evening.

After a first half that saw the Tigers lead by just a solitary point, the Miners broke the game open with a 28-16 third term that proved defining. The home side tried their best to fight back in the final period, but the damage was done as Ballarat capped off an excellent road win.

Bibby was a driving force in the result of the match, proving a near immovable force at times to lead the Miners past Melbourne on its home deck.

She had a game-high 37 points on 13/24 shooting from the field and doing most of her work on the drive and attacking the rim. Bibby seemed unfazed by any sort of contest from the defence and some clever passing from her teammates gave her the space to go to work.

On the glass, Bibby was unmatched in her ability to get first hands on the ball after a miss. She pulled down 12 boards and got to this figure by boxing out her direct opponent and getting into good position on both ends of the floor.

Bibby was simply too much for the defence to handle as Ballarat took care of business against the Tigers, and showcased why she is one of the most dangerous players on the team.

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