Under 16 Hills Hornets basketballer’s Bailey Thom and Angus Masters have been selected in the U16 Basketball NSW team for NSW Metro and NSW Country to compete at the U16 National Championships in July in Perth.
This is the first time that Hills Hornets have had a representative in both U16 Metro and Country NSW teams.
Bailey Thom is 6ft 3, 15 years old and attends the Kings School in Parramatta. The Castle Hill local started playing at Hills Hornets in the Junior Academy at the age of 8 has progressed through the Hills programs from local competition to the rep programs and now NSW state representation. He is also a Junior Academy coach at Hills Basketball Association where he works part time.
2021 marks Bailey’s fifth year of representative basketball at Hills. He in the U16 Hills Hornets Premier League team this year and has been selected in numerous Basketball NSW High Performance programs each year.
In 2019, Bailey and his U14 Hills Hornets teammates won the U14 National Club Championships in Victoria making them one of the most impressive junior basketball teams in the country. Bailey scored a game high of 25 points in the grand final and was Captain of the team.
Bailey said “When I was about 10, I wrote down a list of things I wanted to achieve in basketball over the next 5 years. Making the U16 team was the biggest achievement I could imagine at the time so I really wanted to make this team. The trials are tough, and all the players are really talented. I was training at Hills when I found out and one of the senior Hornets players told me I had made the team, I was pretty excited. It’s a real honour to represent NSW going up against the best players in our age group in the country.”
At only 15 years old and already 6ft 6, Angus Masters joined Hills Hornets as a local and representative player last year. Angus’ hometown is Albury where he played representative basketball for the Albury Cougars for 4 years. His parents still live in Albury however Angus is now boarding at The Kings School.
Angus still technically resides in a regional area, so he was required to trial for the NSW Country team which meant multiple long trips for his parents and Angus to country areas to trial with his regional teammates.
Angus said, “Moving to Sydney and playing for Hills has been awesome as I’m able to really improve my game here. It’s also great to still be able to play for NSW Country because I have heaps of mates in the squad and we have grown up playing together. I was really surprised to make the team because it’s pretty competitive. I was selected to play in the Australia Country Cup last year and it was cancelled due to Covid so I can’t wait to get to nationals in July and play against the other states.”
Both Bailey and Angus have become firm friends over the years thanks to various basketball camps and tournaments making Angus’ move to Sydney a little easier. They are both currently members of the U16 Hills Representative age group who have a history of success, with State and Metro & National Championship wins in the Basketball NSW Waratah Metro Junior League U12 & U14’s in 2017 and 2019. Both boys say they are working hard with their Coach Dave Hayman and teammates to “threepeat” those titles in 2021.