Big V sides Warrnambool Seahawks and Mermaids to hold 2018 team tryouts

BIG DREAMS: Australian Crocs teenager Jay Rantall will use the Big V competition, where he plays against men, to fast-track his development. Picture: Morgan Hancock
BIG DREAMS: Australian Crocs teenager Jay Rantall will use the Big V competition, where he plays against men, to fast-track his development. Picture: Morgan Hancock

WARRNAMBOOL’S Big V basketball teams are hoping to unearth hidden gems at their 2018 tryouts.

The Tim Gainey-coached Seahawks and Louise Brown-led Mermaids will run sessions at the Arc on Thursday, December 14 as they strive to assemble high-quality division one rosters.

Gainey, who has returned to the Seahawks’ top role, said the tryouts were open to players from across the south-west.

Players from Portland and Hamilton, including championship-winning Seahawk Brock Carter and title-winning Mermaid Abbey Sutherland, have joined the Warrnambool program in recent seasons.

“Me and Louise are expecting the ones who played last season to be there at the tryouts,” Gainey said.

“But there might be other people out there – an Abbey Sutherland or a Justin Wallace, who came from Terang a couple of years ago but hadn’t had an opportunity yet. It gives them (players from around the region) a chance to have a go.”

Gainey is one of three confirmed starters for the Seahawks.

Assistant coach and ex-SEABL forward Alex Gynes has recommitted as has Australian Crocs guard Jay Rantall.

The only confirmed depature from the roster which made a preliminary final in 2017 is championship-winning point guard Josh Dean, who has switched to football and signed with Hampden league club Warrnambool.

Gainey said American import Xavier Johnson-Blount, who won Big V division one all-star five honours this year, was a chance to return for a third season.

But he said no decision had been made on how the Seahawks would use their import slot.