JACA DOMINANCE: Tequila side wins again
BASKETBALL: With a flash storm pelting the roof of the Grafton Sports Centre, it created a thunderous atmosphere for the Iron Jack Jacaranda Carnival A Grade grand final.
But it was the lightning that would strike twice for Brisbane outfit Tequila Mockingbird as they secured back-to-back Grafton Tyrepower A Grade titles.
Led by Grafton basketball ex-pat Anthony Kopcikas, Tequila Mockingbird fought back from a four-point deficit at half time to secure a 66-55 win over Jacaranda Carnival newcomers BONR.
"It's awesome to win this again, we have a bit of a winning culture at Tequila Mockingbirds and it is good to show that again,” Kopcikas said.
The A Grade title was the team's third in the past four years, which Kopcikas put down to the fact the team had plenty of stability in that time.
"It has been mostly the same side over the years,” he said. "We are mostly made up of guys from North Brisbane Dragons, as well as a few Brisbane Capitals players.
"But we also have our forward Atem Atem who comes up from South Australia to play in this tournament. We just love the whole event, there is a real social atmosphere to the carnival.”
While they had already claimed a win over BONR earlier in the carnival, Kopcikas admitted the Newcastle side shocked them in the opening stages of the final.
"They were playing really well, their shots were falling and they were just outworking us,” he said.
"For a little while there we were a little bit scared, but we just knuckled down and locked up on defence which proved the difference.
"I just said to the boys at half time, 'we only have 20 minutes left, so just put it all out there'.
"We were going a bit half-paced at times out there, but we just had to push through.
"The guys were just awesome at the end, everyone really stepped up when it mattered most.”
Tequila Mockingbird pocketed a handy $2000 winner's cheque for their efforts across the weekend.