It wasn’t meant to be for either Sale Sonics or Maffra Eagles in the Country Basketball League this season after both clubs bowed out of the men’s and women’s competitions, failing to make finals.

Their efforts didn’t come without a fight however, especially for the Eagles, who narrowly missed finals in both the men’s and women’s divisions.

A single win in the final round was not enough for Maffra’s men’s side, who missed finals on percentage.

Their weekend started on a positive note, but it didn’t come without scare which threatened to end the Eagles’ season then and there.

Hosting Korumburra Wildcats, it was the visitors who dealt the damage early, the Wildcats taking a six-point advantage after the first quarter.

Knowing that they couldn’t afford the loss, the Eagles knuckled down and put the Wildcats to the sword, returning them the favour to regain the lead, up by five at the half.

Despite having nothing to play for, Korumburra played with a heck of a lot of pride, winning the final to quarters, but it wasn’t enough to win the game, it was enough to tie it.

The Wildcats drew the margin back to two points with a quarter to play, before a 25-23 quarter saw the scores level at fulltime.

Heading to overtime, it was Maffra who found an extra gear, keeping their season alive with a 15-8 overtime period to claim the first win of two games at the weekend.

Byron Sandeman was instrumental in the victory for the Eagles, netting 39 points, and he was helped all over the court to get Maffra over the line in the end.

But more work was needed to be put in, a second win needed, this time travelling to play Wonthaggi Coasters the very next day.

Seemingly, Maffra put all of their eggs in the one basket, that basket named first quarter.

They kept up with the Coasters, but were still down by three after the first quarter, but were visibly behind from there on in.

Wonthaggi extended to a 12-point halftime lead, before leaving the Eagles in the dust to win by 47 points, 109-62.

Sandeman tried his hardest once again, scoring 15 points, as did Thomas Scott (13 points) and Marcus Cope (11).

Maffra finished their season in fifth, on the same number of points as Warragul Warriors (7-3) but trailing by 20 per cent.

Sale Sonics couldn’t finish their season on a high but simultaneously avoided the wooden spoon.

Morwell Magic were too strong for the Sonics in the end, beating them by nine points at home, despite some late pressure from the visitors.

Sale slowly clawed back at an early deficit, coming from eight points down back to five at the halftime break.

The margin drew back out to eight points at the end of the third, before a tight final term confirmed the win for the Magic, 81-72.

Some prominent scoring from the likes of Harrison Rowley (18 points), Josh Backway (16) and Benjamin Dessent (14) wasn’t quite enough to counteract Morwell’s attack.

Sale finished the season in second-last, with 12 points to their name.

To round out the home-and away season, Traralgon T-Birds defeated Warragul Warriors 89-85, despite both sides already qualifying for finals, follow Maffra’s loss to Wonthaggi.

Moe Meteors convincingly beat Southern Peninsula Sharks by 27 points to complete the home-and-away season undefeated.

The Sharks managed to get a win on the final weekend however, also defeating Lakes Entrance Pelicans by nine points, 97-88.

Wonthaggi cleaned up against Pakenham, 105 to 87, to complete a perfect weekend and set up their fight for the men’s premiership.

Next week, Moe will host Warragul in the first semi-final, while Traralgon will welcome the Coasters in a bid to make the Grand Final.

It was a luckless weekend for the local women’s teams, with Maffra and Sale going down in each of their fixtures.

An encouraging start from the Eagles in their first game against Korumburra was granted, but that was merely it.

The Eagles led by five points at the first break, but that was just about all they could celebrate from that game.

The Wildcats then regained the lead at halftime by six points, before extending their lead to 16 at the end of the third quarter.

A tight final term decided the game then and there, as Korumburra held on to win by 17 points, 95-78.

Sienna Wynd played her part with 25 points, as did Emerson Connolly (19 points) and Paige Biddle (17).

Despite already playing the day before, the Eagles were spirited in their second game of the weekend against the Coasters.

Once again, they had all the momentum in the opening parts of the game, going up by nine points at the end of the first quarter.

And just like the day before, they surrendered their lead in the next quarter, as Wonthaggi outscored the Eagles 23-11.

Just three points separated the two sides in the final half, all square in the third term, but the Coasters were able to edge further ahead in the last to claim the six-point win, 66-60.

Again, Maffra’s trio of Biddle, Connolly and Wynd did the damage for their side, despite the loss, combing for 46 of their 60 points, scoring 21, 15 and 10 points respectively.

Maffra’s women’s side finished sixth, just two points and some percentage from the fourth-placed Moe.

Just like their men’s side, Sale couldn’t finish on a high note either, going down to Morwell by 37 points in their final game of the season.

Morwell remained on top of their opponents for each quarter of the encounter, taking a six-point lead, turning it into a 13-point advantage at halftime.

This continued to grow in the second half, turning into a blowout, with Morwell extending out to a 23-point lead before finishing strongly to walk away as 85-48 winners.

Brooke Kelly tried her best for the Sonics, with 14 points.

The Sonics finished the season in ninth, with two wins to their name.

Moe and Traralgon finished their seasons strong with wins, the Meteors defeating the Sharks by 44 points and the T-Birds dealt the same damage to Warragul.

The Sharks didn’t leave the weekend empty handed, defeating the Pelicans by 26 points, while Wonthaggi also completed a perfect weekend, winning by 17 points over Pakenham.

This week, Korumburra host the Meteors, while Traralgon play the in-form Wonthaggi to set up an epic Grand Final the week after.