WARRNAMBOOL Seahawks coach Tim Gainey will always reward players who are putting in the extra yards to improve themselves for the benefit of the team's overall performance.
And in recent weeks one player in particular - Matt Rea - has been catching his eye at the side's training sessions.
Gainey said the 18-year-old could see more court time for the Seahawks' top side as it prepares for a home-away double-header against Big V league-leaders Keysborough Cougars at the Arc and 10th-placed Bellarine Storm in Geelong.
"He was there last year and he knows what to expect with the structure and he has been in the gym and he has improved a lot," he said.
"If the opportunity arises on weekend he may get some normal time instead of getting some minutes at the end of a game as we may be able to slot him in early.
"He's been working his tail off and you've got to reward those sorts of guys."
Rea has played a total 18 minutes from four games this season, with 15 of those minutes coming in the 49-point victory over last-placed Latrobe City Energy in round five.
During that stint on court the teenager, who suited up for 10 matches to play a total 16 minutes in his first season last year, scored eight points and had three blocks.
Gainey said Rea was not the only young Seahawk who could soon see some more time as the squad continues to build its depth.
"I've been trying to get all my young guys to suit up for games and we have six or seven young guys training so it's always good to reward one or two to play with the older boys," he said.
"But it also depends on who we are playing, we have our normal nine guys but those last few positions we have guys working hard at training and sticking to what we are trying to do to gain a spot."
Gainey said the side was closing in on full strength with only James Mitchell (leg) still on the long-term injury list and expected to return later in the season.
"James is tracking very well and he will end up doing a lot more training in June and then we will have a full squad," he said.
"We got four guys back last week and three of them were starters. 'X' (Xavier Johnson-Blount) got cleared to play, Josh Dean returned from a hamstring and Ollie Bidmade was back after he hyper-extended his knee."
The Seahawks coach hoped another bumper crowd would turn out to cheer on the men's side and the Mermaids, who play Southern Peninsula Sharks, from 8pm and 6pm respectively.
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