Nix believes Slammers still in hunt

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Mitchell WoodcockSouth Western Times
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Play-offs are still on the cards for the Printsync South West Slammers despite a win-less start to the season, according to coach Charles Nix.

The Slammers have started 0-3 and this weekend hit the road for their first away game of 2017, when they travel to Warwick Stadium to take on the Stirling Senators, who have only the one victory.

Nix said despite the poor start after a promising pre-season, he believed they were still a chance to compete for the championship.

“I have been in bigger holes than this as a coach,” he said.

“I am not concerned. We have a team that has just come together.

“There are 14 teams in the SBL and eight make the play-offs, so you need to play 500 basketball to make it.

“We are still a chance for the play-offs, we just need to turn it around quickly.”

The Senators will present another challenge for the Slammers, with plenty of experience in Perth Wildcat Corban Wroe as well as Wollongong Hawk Cody Ellis and former Wildcat Rhys Vague.

“Cody and Rhys will get their points, we need to stop their bit players,” Nix said.

The Slammers coach believes Wroe will likely line up on star guard Tre Nichols and it will be up to the rest of the Slammers to help their leading scorer get space.

Nix said if his players “trusted in our process” then the wins would come.

He was also hopeful key import Brian Voelkel would be cleared to play this weekend, which would help out co-captain Clive Weeden and rising star Chris Douglass on the boards.

An in-form South West Slammers women’s side will have one of their toughest assignments this weekend, when they take on the Stirling Senators.

Both teams have two wins from three games and it will be a pivotal match-up for early season points as the battle for play-offs begins to heat up.

Slammers vice-captain Kate Fielding said this weekend the team would focus on defence.

“While we need to work on our outside shooting, we have proven we can score, but we really need to be able to hold teams to less and really lift our defensive pressure,” she said.

Fielding believes either herself or captain Courtney Bayliss will get the job on Senators star Amber Land.

“But they have a few players for us to worry about, including (Kisha) Lee who got 41 points last week,” she said. “It will really need to be a team defensive effort.”

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