Rockwheelers learn from Bullets
MOVING to the next level of the game will be a tougher ask than some of the Rockwheelers might have imagined.
The move to play a four-match series between the Rockwheelers, coached by Rebecca Smith and Jenny Anderson, and national league team, the Brisbane Spinning Bullets, was highly successful in everything apart from results.
Sporting Wheelies and Disabled regional co-ordinator Michael Oxley said the weekend, with games held at Yeppoon's Capricorn Stadium, was a great success and could possibly lead to it becoming an annual event.
Oxley said the advantage for the Spinning Bullets was being able to play as a team. When practice matches are organised in Brisbane the squad is usually split with outside players filling in.
For local players it was an opportunity to play against Paralympians of the calibre of Australia's Beijing gold medallist Adrian King and Great Britain's Joe Bestwick, a bronze medallist, and learn requirements for making the next level.
The opening match was the best result for the Rockwheelers, losing by just eight points with a 45-37 scoreline.
“We got off to a good start, but couldn't maintain that intensity,” Oxley said.
In the second match on Saturday, the Spinning Bullets went on a third-quarter scoring blitz of 26-2 and won the match by 73-36.
“That quarter was the one that hurt us,” Oxley summed up.
Throughout the weekend that was the pattern for much of the contest, with the Rockwheelers keeping in touch for much of the game, but the Spinning Bullets finishing them off with a scoring frenzy in one of the quarters.
Spinning Bullets won the third game by 70-39, going to a 15 point lead in the first quarter. In the final match the visitors won 68-34 after extending their lead by 12 points in the second quarter and a further 11 points in the third.
The Spinning Bullets came to win and improve their own match play, but it did not stop them from assisting the Rockwheeler players.
“They encouraged our guys to work on fundamentals and match fitness,” Oxley reported.
Playing against the local team was former Rockwheeler Nick Benjamin and Oxley said he is already settling in well for the Brisbane team.
Oxley said there were also other players who were ready to move to the next grade
“Luke Christie of Gladstone is on the brink of playing for the Spinning Bullets,” he predicted.
Oxley said Mount Morgan's Jason Holohan is another capable of making a move south.