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Bulls charge into finals

Headshot of Justin Fris
Justin FrisSouth Western Times
Travis Durnin sunk a late free throw to help his side get over the line.
Camera IconTravis Durnin sunk a late free throw to help his side get over the line. Credit: Jon Gellweiler

Direct tickets to the Bunbury Basketball Association grand final were booked on Friday night at the South West Sports Centre, while others had their finals plans end.

Reigning A-Men’s premiers Bulls survived a heart-stopping first semi-final against Tornadoes Black, to run out 100-98 winners.

Black, who have pushed Bulls in all of their contests this season, overturned a double digit deficit early in the fourth quarter to force the league leaders to dig deep in a bid to grind out the win.

A clutch three-point shot from Nathan van Dijk (21 points) trimmed the margin to within two points, before Travis Durnin converted his trip to the charity stripe to make it a three-point game.

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Each time the Bulls looked to have done enough, Black struck back instantly through consecutive downtown threes from Matthew Leary.

Leary, who finished an equal game-high 34 points, was indispensable in the closing stages for his side.

Over the other side, Paddy Philips dropped 34 points for the victors, with Durnin and Chris Douglass also hitting double digits.

Once in possession towards the final whistle, the reigning premiers utilised their situational awareness to head to the free throw line and ice the game.

The Dunsborough Oilers will face Black in Friday night’s preliminary final, after they comfortably ended Aces Sky’s season 84-69.

Barnstorming A-Women league leaders Tornadoes Black marched defiantly into the grand final after easily accounting for the Dunsborough Oilers 66-50 in the second semi-final.

Black’s four-deep offensive engine proved too challenging for the visitors, who conceded 14 unanswered points from the stroke of three quarter time until early in the last quarter.

Tornadoes Red will play the Oilers in the preliminary final after they easily took care of Aces Sky 64-50.

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