STAWELL - Stawell Wildcats player Aiden Lee has admitted it has been a tough season for the club in its first year in the Country Basketball League.
Stawell had a chance to record its first win of the season against Portland Coasters on Saturday however the Coasters were too strong, running out 61-85 winners in front of a large crowd.
"Before the season, we probably thought we could get one win on the board," Lee, who was stand in captain at the weekend, said.
"It has taken a toll on us, having not won a game. If we could have pinched one earlier in the season, even the one against Colac when we lost by 13 points, it would have set us up.
"We could have even won another game or two along the way."
Although Stawell have yet to win a game this season, Lee said overall there had been 'a lot' of improvement amongst the players.
"Especially myself and the others who haven't actually trained for basketball before. It was a whole new learning curve."
Stawell Wildcats have been coached by Trevor Holmes in 2012/13.
A former coach of CBL's Horsham Hornets, Holmes approached Lee in August last year and put forward his idea of forming a Stawell team.
The team has come a long way in five months.
"From when Trevor first approached me about making the CBL and to where we are now...we've improved a lot.
"If we keep improving, we can be something big over the next couple of years," Lee said.
Lee is also program officer at the Stawell Leisure Complex, which holds its own senior men's basketball competition.
He is amazed by the improvement in the quality of the WHK senior men's basketball thanks to the introduction of the Stawell Wildcats team this season.
"The men's comp in itself has gone in leaps and bounds. It's unreal," Lee said.
Even the people not involved in Wildcats have noticed it's a lot more competitive now and they've found it harder to play.
Some teams have two or three Wildcats players setting up plays and things like that."
Lee said it 'wouldn't hurt' for a few of those players not involved in CBL this summer to join the Wildcats for season 2013/14.
"It would be good for them to get a bit of experience. The more training you do, the better training is - it's as simple as that," he said.
"It would only help their basketball."
In the meantime Stawell is looking to progress in the CBL, building representative teams as well as junior teams.
There is an under 18 side ready to go to the basketball state championships in March while an under 14 squad is in training and is a possibility to play in Colac, also in March.
The club is buoyed by the enthusiasm shown from people of all ages, particularly those aged from 10 to 16 years.
Stawell is also set to branch out in women's basketball, getting a CBL team up and running and eventually this will extend this girls squads being formed.
"It's all there, we've just got to keep going - that's the main thing," Lee said.
"Eventually it'll all flow through."
*Stawell's final game of the season tomorrow night sees them travel to take on the Hamilton Hurricanes at 7pm.