THE Sale Sonics men opened their account for the Country Basketball League season in emphatic fashion on Saturday night.
The Sonics defeated Bairnsdale 90-57 at the Bishop Phelan Stadium.
Sale led by 12 points at quarter-time before stretching the margin to 25 by half-time and 32 at three-quarter-time.
The Sonics won by 33 after a more even final term.
Luke Williams led all scorers, with 29 points, while Sonics teammate Billy Hughes scored 21, including five three-pointers. For the Bullets, Jordi Williams scored 25 and Andrew Savige 17.
Maffra was victorious in one of its two matches.
At home on Saturday night, the Eagles lost to Warragul 75-63.
The Warriors led by six points at quarter-time, then took control of the match to lead by 18 at half-time and 19 after the third term.
A three-pointer in the opening minute of the final term extended the Warriors’ lead to 22. The Eagles ate into the deficit, but it proved too great a mountain to climb.
Dwain Scott scored 22 for the Warriors and Sam Flanders 18, while Andrew Quirk top-scored for the Eagles with 15.
The Eagles returned to winning form on Sunday afternoon, when they won a thriller at Traralgon 70-69.
Maffra led by 12 points at half-time before the T-Birds reduced the deficit to seven by three-quarter-time.
Traralgon claimed the led with six minutes to play in the final quarter.
With the Eagles trailing by four, Sam Whelan scored two vital two-pointers, while the T-Birds added a late point from the free throw line, before Brent Walker scored the winning basket with 19 seconds left.
Whelan scored 22 points and Quirk 21, while Christian D’Angelo scored 19 for the T-Birds.
IN the women’s competition, Maffra also had mixed results.
The Eagles lost at home to Warragul 74-52 on Saturday night.
The Eagles were on the back foot early as the Warriors scored the first 22 points before Faith Biddle opened the hosts’ account with two points from the free throw line early in the second quarter.
The Warriors ended the first half leading by 19 before winning by 22.
Coco Henry top-scored for Maffra with 19 points.
On Sunday, Maffra defeated Traralgon 83-75 with Alex Gallatly scoring 19 and Jennifer Wrigglesworth 18. Emirson Devenie scored 36 for the T-Birds.
Sale lost at home to Korumburra 73-68 on Sunday.
The Sonics led by three points at quarter-time before the Wildcats turned it around to take a three-point lead in the main break. The margin was maintained to three-quarter-time.
The Sonics levelled the scores with a minute and a half to play, but the Wildcats scored six of the final seven points.
THE Sale men will head to Mornington to play Western Port Saturday night from 7pm.
The Sonics women, and both Maffra teams, have a weekend off.