WARRNAMBOOL Seahawks coach Bobby Cunningham will start preparations for the 2015 season this week after his side was bundled out of the Big V division one play-offs on Saturday night.
The Seahawks’ dream season — they came from near the foot of the table in 2013 to fall one game short of a grand final berth — ended at the hands of a rampant Latrobe City Energy at Traralgon.
The Energy burst out to a 22-point quarter-time lead before surging to a commanding 101-59 semi-final triumph.
Latrobe City will play Southern Peninsula Sharks in the best-of-three grand finals series after the Sharks eliminated Geelong Supercats.
Cunningham, who was appointed on a two-year deal, said he would take a proactive approach to next season.
He is eager to help the Seahawks consolidate their standout 2014 campaign. His long-term ambition team is to be reinstated in the championship grade.
“I’ll get a hold of each individual guy this week and talk about the year that was and what their plans are,” Cunningham said. “I want to piece my team together now and go from there. I like what we’ve done this year — giving kids a go, giving guys from out of town a go.”
Warrnambool, having clinched a thrilling home quarter-final win against Chelsea Gulls, was under extreme pressure from start to finish against Latrobe City.
The Energy dropped 30 points in an emphatic opening term and kept the Seahawks at arm’s length.
“Nothing we did or anything we tried was going to work last night,” Cunningham said.
“We had one lead for the game. From the jump ball we won the tap and scored and that was it.
“We ran into a hot basketball team last night.”
Cunningham said the severity of the loss was disappointing but that the Seahawks’ season had unearthed talented teenagers and exposed them to a high-level of competition.
He rated the chance to play two finals in front of big crowds — at home and away — as invaluable for their development.