- Coach: Dan Roden
- Captain: Shelby Miller
- Finished: second (P12 W10 L2 F746 A505 147.72% Pts 40)
- Semi-final: d Kingston 61-50
WITHIN minutes of completing a tough semi-final win on Saturday, the Cavaliers brains trust were already discussing their plans for the Northern Hawks.
Coach Dan Roden and captain Shelby Miller led the discussion with the leadership group and the message was clear that the team was not content with just making another grand final.
Those plans centre around winning it, as they did last year with a 65-59 result at the Silverdome which still burns with the venue's co-tenants.
"The Hawks are the benchmark for the competition so you have to be at your best to beat them," Roden said.
"The key to beating the Hawks is playing four quarters, which sounds cliched but when we first played them this season we won the first quarter by a large margin and still lost."
In that round three match-up - delayed by four months by the coronavirus outbreak - Cavs steamrollered the first quarter 22-13, but the Hawks won the next three to edge the contest by four goals.
Roden was delighted with his team's nine-goal semi-final victory and is confident they are ready for the competition's toughest task.
"The semi was a really good platform for us to go into the grand final.
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"You work towards this all year, come in with a set game plan and hope it will work but it doesn't always. In the semi they stuck to it for four quarters but also needed a bit of luck.
"We were ruthless on loose ball gets and defensively very strong. We created a number of turnovers and were patient with transition.
"The third quarter has been our quarter all season. It's called the premiership quarter and for the last four rounds we've owned it, we just want to do that for all four quarters because with our fitness we can really take games on."
The Hawks are the benchmark for the competition so you have to be at your best to beat them.Dan Roden
With defender Dana Lester out for the rest of the season with an achilles injury, Roden relies heavily on the experience of Miller, Deanna Wadley and Lucy Dennis but was also delighted with several support acts on Saturday.
"Our rotations really worked well. Piper Sanders came on and made an immediate impact and Monique Dufty came on from our 19s for 10 minutes and got two intercepts high out of the circle in the third quarter and something like that really gets everyone up and about.
"Our leadership group really stood up feeding our shooters and Hayley McDougall was close to 100 per cent which was a fantastic effort."