Gippsland United holds 3rd position after win over Coburg – Round 13

Blake Metcalf-Holt

GIPPSLAND United held onto third position on the Big V Division 1 ladder after a 96 to 80 win over Coburg in Round 13 on Saturday night.

United’s American import, Jalin Wimberly dropped 46 points at Traralgon’s GRISS stadium (Gippsland Regional Indoor Sports Stadium).

Despite facing a side with only four wins on the year for third-last in the competition, it was a tight start to the game with limited scoring through the first six minutes that ended with United losing the opening quarter, 23-21.

That sluggish start would transition into the second term, with the Giants fighting for loose balls and hitting devastating threes that pushed their lead out to 12 points.

The Wimberly show would then commence as the United forward would score 11 points to finish the second quarter seemingly getting to the basket any time he pleased.

United took the lead back and extended it to five points by halftime after a late-second three-pointer from Ben Barlow. United finished the half on an 18-5 run.

United’s defensive tenacity and Wimberly’s immeasurable ability to get to the rim would follow into the winning third quarter, where they outscored Coburg 28-18.

It seemed as if United was ready to close up shop before Coburg’s shooters caught fire once again, and some of their own shots went awry as the Giants bought the margin back to six points with just three minutes remaining.

After Coburg’s Roman Zaire nailed a clutch three, a chaotic few possessions unfolded before Barlow found himself at the free throw line where he knocked down one of two to push it out to a three possession ball game.

One stop later, United had ball in-hand once again to bury the game. Guard Koby Tibballs found Wimberly in the air for an alley-oop slam dunk to leave the result without any doubt.

United plays RMIT at home this weekend to attempt their biggest scalp of the season.

RMIT has lost just the two games this season, winning 12.