A QUICK glance at the Women's National Basketball League ladder shows the Bendigo Spirit sitting on top of the ladder.
With a 12-1 record it's easy to see why some people think we're cruising through.
The reality is we're far from cruising.
We haven't played great and we've still got players who are trying to find their groove.
We've been scraping through without playing our best basketball.
It's been a reality check without losing a game.
If we want to go all the way to the WNBL championship we need to lift out intensity.
To go to that next level we've started to lift our intensity on the training track.
We're working hard on our fitness again. We probably let those fitness sessions slip a bit, but we're back into it again now.
Working hard as a group helps build trust and confidence in each other.
That transfers into games as well.
That confidence and trust was the cornerstone of the Spirit success last season.
On paper we have a stronger squad this season, but at this stage we haven't replicated the chemistry that last year's team had.
Last season we had a lot of games where we were losing going into half-time.
We had to fight to win so many games. We had that belief and trust that everyone was going to play their role.
With a new group this year we're still building that confidence.
This year we're playing spurts of good basketball, but we haven't strung together 40 minutes of basketball yet.
We get in front of teams, but we're not landing the knockout blow.
As a group we never look too far ahead, but we know we have an opportunity here to do something special and we need to do everything we can to ensure we don't let it slip.
We have the perfect opportunity to lift our game a gear when we play second-placed Dandenong in Bendigo on Friday night.
Dandenong is a quality team and we'll need to be at our best to get another win.
Finally, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all the Bendigo Spirit fans for their support in 2013.
It's been a year I will never forget.
I hope you have a happy and safe Christmas and I look forward to seeing you at Spirit games in 2014.
We have an opportunity here to do something special