A VETERAN of Warrnambool’s basketball scene is taking his talents to Portland.
Rebel Noter was named the Coaster’s Country Basketball League (CBL) coach early this month and will make his debut with Portland against Terang on Saturday.
Following up a 4-10 regular season, Noter will bring experience to the Coasters as a championship-winning Seahawks player, as well as a short stint as Warrnambool’s Big V coach last season.
The basketball veteran has been a major part in Warrnambool’s junior development program over the past 20 years and hopes to advance Portland’s young talent to a higher level of competition in the CBL.
“There’s a good blend of experience and youth,” Noter told The Standard.
“The CBL is more the country kids and local talent, without the imports, so there are country players trying to play at the highest level they can.
“At the moment we have 19 at training which we’ll bring back to a squad of 15.
“I’ve been over and watched their domestic competition and they’re used to playing a zone and just passing the ball around.
“I’ve put a bit of structure into their offence and some of the things we’ve been running are new to them.
“We’re making it a bit easier for guys to show what they can do. I’ve been impressed with their attitude towards training.”
The league’s south-west conference also features Warrnambool, Mount Gambier, Horsham, Stawell and Colac, running between October and February.
Noter said the Coasters had a strong chance to improve their win/loss record and make the finals this season, especially with Hamilton and Corio exiting the competition.
“Realistically I do believe they can make the finals.
“The main thing is to concentrate on our style of basketball and what I’ve been trying to implement over there.
“We’ve got kids away at college that want to play at the highest level they can.”
Seahawks Big V player Justin Wallace will coach Terang’s returning CBL side, replacing Marcus Rees who led the side in their previous season.
Terang Basketball Assoc-iation committee member and player Michael Payne said training had ramped up since players were free from football commitments.
“We’ve been in training for three or four weeks now,” he said. “Our expectations are to make the finals and give a couple of younger players a run.”