Shepparton has moved quickly to replace outgoing import Jerron Jamerson.
The Gators have signed on combo guard Carlin Dupree from Milwaukee and are confident he will be able to take to the court tonight against fellow undefeated Big V division one outfit Sunbury.
‘‘We believe it (clearance to play) is right to go at the moment, we’re just waiting on the final word,’’ Gators coach Leigh Bathman said.
‘‘He’s still going to take some time to learn everything we’re doing but he certainly showed a good intensity and work ethic at training, he’s got plenty of speed and was defensively our best player at training.
‘‘I think he’ll bring a lot to us in terms of really good team play, he’s super excited and ready to go.
‘‘He’ll start at point guard for us and hopefully within a few weeks he’ll be running the show and be a real floor general for us.’’
Javaan Mumtaz (32 points), Atem Atem (18), Gabe Evans and Nick Dodd (both 11) went big for the Gators last week against Keysborough to give the side a 3-0 start to the season, but tonight’s task will be a massive one.
Captain Dodd is out through work commitments, meaning Atem and fellow big-man Jaxson Macfarlane will be crucial to Shepparton’s chances of success against the Jets.
‘‘I’ve been thrilled with the results and particularly last week, it was one of the best wins I’ve been involved in — it was really character building stuff,’’ Bathman said.
‘‘Carlin will go into the starting line-up and we’ll go with three guards.
‘‘It won’t be easy, they’re a very good team. Without Nick we’re certainly going to need some luck with foul trouble and a lot will rest on the shoulders of Atem and Jaxson.
‘‘But hopefully we can keep the momentum rolling.
‘‘Early wins on the board keep the pressure off if we do happen to drop a game or two, but we’ll definitely give a good account of ourselves.’’
The Jets defeated Coburg last week after wins against Warrnambool and Bulleen to kick-off the season.
The Gators were winners against Whittlesea and Collingwood to start the season, before sneaking past the Cougars last round.
Tonight’s clash starts at 8pm at Boardman Stadium, with the Gators one of only a few sides not forced to back up with a fixture tomorrow.