Basketball.Smithton Basketball Club players Jett Grey and Emerson Wells have returned from the Australian Junior Basketball Championships with a new-found knowledge of the game.
The locals travelled to Sterling, Western Australia last month to compete with Tasmania’s Under 16 sides.
Making their debut at the championships last year in Newcastle and Maitland, New South Wales with the Under 14s, the pair were competitive in their second appearance.
“I think I did a really good job as a bottom ager,” says Jett, 14.
“It was a huge step up from what I am used to but I loved the challenge.”
Continuing to develop his skills and strength remains a priority for Jett, who hopes to progress through next year’s trials and reach championship status once again.
“The main thing I have learnt is that you really need to be prepared in all areas of your basketball, physically and mentally.”
Facing taller opponents, Emerson said the squad had to “play smart basketball and focus on making good shot selections” to get ahead.
“I learnt a lot about the level of intensity you need to play at if you are to be competitive,” she says.
“I also learnt how close and supportive you need to be with your teammates to get each other through what is a really hard week.”
The 14-year-old says she will continue to train hard in her bid to join the Under 16 squad next year: “I’ll be a top age player in 2018 so will be working hard to keep improving and developing all aspects of my game.”