Sunday was a special day for the Melbourne Tigers, the club celebrated thirty years since the Tigers defeated the Perth Wildcats in NBL competition.
The team were up against the Mt. Gambier Pioneers, a formidable team whose sides were towards the pointy end of the ladder.
Victory by the Tigers would be the icing on the celebratory cake.
The Tigers came into this round facing a team that started the weekend in third spot and the Pioneers started the game in fine fashion by establishing a five-point lead at the end of the period.
The scoring was even in the second period with the two sides scoring 21 points apiece and the Pioneers held on to their five-point lead at the main break.
The Tigers got going in the third period and outscored the Pioneers by five points to level up the game and set up a thrilling conclusion.
The Pioneers got the margin out to four in the first minute before Lily Carmody halved it before scoring again to even things up.
The Tigers then hit the front but a Pioneers three swung the game in their favor, Nikki Metcalfe then scored two and then sunk two free throws to put the Tigers ahead with just over four and a half minutes to go.
Nikki Metcalfe then sunk one of her two free throw attempts to extend the Tigers lead to four before a Pioneers three brough the margin down to one with three minutes and one second remaining.
A scare for the Tigers occurred when the Pioneers scored a three with just over two-minutes remaining, but there was drama as the shot clock expired just as the ball was being shot and the Tigers retained their one-point lead.
A minute later the Pioneers were again looking to score, once again the shot clock expired before they could do so and seconds later Lily Carmody scored from a free throw attempt to extend the margin to two points.
The Pioneers could not score in the last minute and the Tigers held on to win 67-65 to kick off the thirtieth-year celebration in fine style.
Samantha Simons top scored with 26 points to continue her fine season with the Tigers.
The Tigers Men were next on court against the then ladder leading Pioneers who had narrowly lost to Geelong the previous night upsetting their 6-0 start to the season.
The Tigers had a hot start and led 28-18 at the end of the first period, the Pioneers got going in the second period but the Tigers extended their lead by one to lead 53-42.
The Tigers started the second half in style by scoring 28 points and with the Pioneers only getting 14, the lead was out to 25 points and Tigers fans were a period away from celebrating the perfect day.
Tigers fans weren’t completely comfortable as Nunawading came back from a big deficit to scare the team, Pioneers efforts were stifled in the last two minutes as Jordon Timmins put in two and Taj Chehhal put in five points including one with three seconds left to leave the margin at 24 points.
The Tigers Men have now squared the ledger and remain fairly close to the new leaders Frankston who have a 6-2 record so far this season.
Next up is the Eltham Wildcats and they are twelfth in the Womens competition and second in the Mens competition, both can be won if the Tigers play to their absolute best.