BRADFORD Dragons power forward Ricky Fetske has labelled their season "a success", but admits it could have gone even better if their star man had arrived earlier in the campaign.

Bradford made the National Basketball League Division One play-offs after finishing seventh in the regular season, but were knocked out by second seeds Worthing Thunder in the quarter-finals earlier this month, losing that match-up 83-73.

Worthing made it all the way to last Sunday's NBL Division One final, where they lost a low-scoring thriller 69-63 to Hemel Storm.

Hemel had won 40 games out of 40 in all competitions this season, but had to come from behind in the final quarter of last weekend's final to complete a perfect campaign.

Bradford might not have triumphed like Hemel, but Fetske insisted: "I think overall the season was a success.

"We learned a lot and (team-mate) Justin Williams ended up being the league's top scorer.

"He joined us later in the season though, and I think we only started playing our strongest basketball as a team when he was familiar with us.

"Some of our losses earlier in the season, we'd have maybe got a better result with Justin in the team and fully firing.

"It got to the point, with Justin up to speed, where we felt we could beat any team."

That nearly came to pass at strong favourites Worthing three weeks ago, with Fetske saying: "That quarter-final at Worthing was by far the closest and most competitive of the four match-ups at that stage.

"The other three were blowouts, but we were only six points down with four minutes to go, they just made a couple of key turnovers to finish us off and then made it all the way to the final after that."

Asked if that had given the Dragons confidence that they can challenge at the top going forward, Fetske reflected: "100 per cent, we can give the top teams a game.

"Obviously Worthing made the final but Hemel are the team to beat, having won 41 games out of 41 this season.

"But two of the three games we had against them were quite competitive and a couple more stops or runs from us could have made it tougher for them.

"We're looking for consistency and to steal a win or two against those 'teams to beat'.

"In Division One basketball, it's about taking things a game at a time.

"Thirteen league wins out of 26 from us this season was respectable, but we have to make sure we understand each match-up individually.

"The key to each game is sticking to a process and hopefully the results will follow."

A strong roster is obviously key to winning games, and Fetske feels Bradford have almost got the balance right.

The American said: "The play-offs were an accomplishment for us.

“It was very competitive in mid-table, but we did what we needed to come ahead of those sides who finished just outside of the play-offs.

“Going forward, we need to keep retaining players to push towards the top.

“We’ve got that experienced veteran core of myself, Rihards Sulcs and Jermayne Laing, while there’s some talented youth here too in Jabari Edwards and Micah Savery-Richards, with others coming up through the ranks.

“If we can pick up one or two additions like we did with Jordan Whelan last summer, who was a massive player for us coming down from the BBL (British Basketball League), we’ll do our best to try and reach the top four, rather than just the top eight.”