Saturday, 10th February 2018
YBL U13 South Division
Bournville Bears II U13 50 Vs 48 Leadonites Basketball U13
(Q1: 20-4 / Q2: 17-9 / Q3: 1-20 / Q4: 12-15)From despair to elation to "that'll do". We all understand that basketball can be a game of scoring runs and momentum but this match took those beliefs to the extremes.
We struggled in the first half with a slightly under-inflated ball and a sprung floor and failed in the simple skill of throwing the ball high enough onto the backboard for it to fall down through the hoop; and in practice continued to struggle with these two facets of the match throughout.
But it was the same ball and floor for both teams and Bears ran away with the first quarter as lethargic legs from key players recovering from the previous two weeks of illness told.
First quarter over and 20-4 down we talked about simply winning the second quarter and building from there. We were better but still not as good as Bears who went into the half-time break ahead by 37 points to 13 having stretched their lead out to 24.
This was new territory for this U13s Leadonites team and strangely had a calming effect upon them as the pre-match pressure of the match eased. We told them that the reason they had scored so few and that Bears had scored so many was because the hoop at the other end of the court was bigger and thus easier to score into!
With Bears' star player sitting out the start of the third quarter, on four personal fouls, we started the second half well scoring a massive 18-points before Bears scored their solitary point of the quarter in the ninth minute of the third quarter. Then Bears' best player fouled out trying to block a shot in the last minute of the quarter; a quarter that ended with bears still ahead by 38-33 but all the momentum was now with Leadonites.
The inevitable happened when Leadonites eventually took their first lead of the match in the seventh minute of the fourth quarter at 47-45, however, it was to be Leadonites' only lead of the contest as Bears regrouped and came back to lead by two. Leadonites leveled the scores at 47-all in the ninth minute. Bears retook the lead again with a converted and-1 to go 50-47 ahead as the match moved into the last minute of regulation time. Mistakes from both sides left the score as it was before a late solitary but crucial free-throw from Adam_D made the score 50-48. With 2.3 seconds left on the clock the ball was with Leadonites for an out-of-bounds throw from the sideline. It was in-bounded to Sami_M who threw up a buzzer beater 3-point shot attempt that hit the rim bounced up and then fell away from the hoop to give Bears the win by 2-points.
In losing this match it leaves the home and away regular season match up between the two teams as: Leadonites Basketball won 1, Bournville Bears II won 1, meaning a head-to-head score of:
Bournville Bears II 83 Vs 84 Leadonites Basketball
Thus Leadonites take the head-to-head by one solitary point and if they win their remaining 3 league matches they will win the YBL U13 South Division title.
(Post report note: Worcester Wolves Blue have forfeited the match due to be played at Ledbury Leisure Centre on 24th March. This is now recorded as a 20-0 walkover victory for Leadonites Basketball. To win the South Division title Leadonites need to beat Frankley Falcons on Saturday, 24th February and then win away at Redditch Rockets on Saturday, 17th March)