Dylan Owen, 14 of the Gladstone Phoenix Powers under-16 boys team at Kev Broome Stadium, Gladstone.
Dylan Owen, 14 of the Gladstone Phoenix Powers under-16 boys team at Kev Broome Stadium, Gladstone. Luka Kauzlaric

Phoenix juniors in good position after bouncing back

GLADSTONE Phoenix Power's under-16 boys team bounced back from a 30-point loss to a Bundaberg side to win its three remaining games in round one of the Central Districts Carnival competition.

The result leaves the team in good standing for the competition, showing its training since May is reaping rewards.

Coach Raymond Cooper guided the up-and-coming team that took to the court in Bundaberg for the carnival on November 2-3. He was particularly impressed with how the boys played.

The CDC is a competition that sees representative matches played between Gladstone, Rockhampton and Bundaberg teams, with the points going towards placings for the State Classics in April.

Commenting on the first match, Cooper said: "We were up by 15 in the first quarter and just crumbled."

Gladstone won its second match against another Bundaberg team by 53 points.

They defeated a Rockhampton team in their third (by 12 points) and Rockhampton again in the final match (by eight points).

Coopers said his team's strong offence was on show at the carnival, and that Mitch Glossop was a stand-out.

"We can definitely score," Cooper said. "We had pretty good depth on the bench."

Team captain Dylan Owen, 14, said the players learnt a few lessons at the carnival.

"We have a few things to work on team wise, but individually, we pretty much have it," Owen said.

Cooper said the team would concentrate on improving defence and communication before CDC round two in Gladstone on February 1-2.

"When we go away for our state championships at the classic, we're going to try to compete in the top division where there's 12 teams in the state," he said.

"It's good being able to see the boys improve and work towards something."

Five players from the squad plan to try out for the Queensland North State Team this weekend.



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