Basketball: Moller, Bonds recognised for dominant seasons

Ballarat Miners forward Craig Moller and Ballarat Rush import Jaterra Bonds have claimed the most valuable player awards for their respective clubs after dominating in the South East Australian Basketball League competition this season. 

Jaterra Bonds.

Jaterra Bonds.

Moller edged out captain Peter Hooley and import Marvin King-Davis to be presented with the Ray Borner medal at Ballarat Basketball’s awards night on Wednesday.

He averaged 17.7 points, 10.8 rebounds and three assists per game and made 16 double doubles in the 22 matches he played.

Currently representing Australia at the World University Games, Moller accepted the award in a pre recorded video, thanking the volunteers, coaches and his teammates.

“It has been an incredible year together, (I’ve) really enjoyed every minute of it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Bonds starred on the court in her first year at Ballarat Skoda Rush.

She earned SEABL’s player of the week in round 11 after averaging 37 points, eight rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.5 steals in two games over one weekend.

The performances helped lift Rush to victories. 

Bonds said the award meant a lot after arriving at the club from Florida. 

“We had a great season, but also a tough season and a real mental challenge,” she said.

“I’m grateful that I got the opportunity to come over here because this is a very good program and establishment. 

“I’ve also met some really great people here, I appreciate everyone I’ve met out here and the friendships that I’ve built while I was here.”

Bonds said the team could not hang its head on missing out on finals after what it managed to accomplish in the second half of the season, an 11 win, two loss record.

Miners’ Cameron McCallum was presented with the coaches award after battling a number of injuries throughout the season. 

He has been described as the “perfect teammate” who would do anything to help the team achieve the ultimate goal, a championship. 

Ashleigh Spencer received the coaches award for her consistent season with Rush. 

Spencer averaged 17.9 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game and stood up in the absence of Joy Burke in the middle of the season.

Meanwhile, Miners’ Ross Weightman and Rush’s Claire Constable were awarded the senior program encouragement award for their respective teams.

Rush coach David Flint received the prestigious Dennis Foley club person award, which acknowledged his contribution to the club since he began coaching the Miners in 2013. 

Three-time Olympian Robyn Maher was inducted into the hall of fame.

AWARD WINNERS

  • Ray Borner Miners MVP Award – Craig Moller
  • Robyn Maher Rush MVP Award– Jaterra Bonds
  • Brian Goorjian Miners Coaches Award – Cameron McCallum
  • Dawn Jose Rush Coaches Award – Ashleigh Spencer
  • Miners Senior Program Encouragement Award – Ross Weightman
  • Rush Senior Program Encouragement Award – Claire Constable
  • Dennis Foley Club Person Award – David Flint
  • Bev Harwood Youth League Rush MVP – Claire Constable and Taylah Wynne
  • Les Hotchin Youth League Miners MVP – Brandon Maplesden  
  • Karen Ashby Junior Elite Rush GRIT Award – Annie Collins
  • Karen Ashby Junior Elite Miners GRIT Award – Jordan Kuzmich
  • Brendan Joyce Junior Elite Coach of the Year Award – Lidina Constable
  • Frank Allisey Volunteer of the Year Award – Tamara Westwood
  • Mount Avoca Club Service Award – Pat Pitts
  • Hall of Fame - Robyn Maher
This story Moller, Bonds recognised for dominant seasons first appeared on The Courier.