Sun 28 Feb: Folkestone 66-74 U18NL
A nail-bitting game that went to the wire. The team, after the 100 mile trip and having to adjust their game because of different hoops, started slow but positively, working hard inside the key both in offense and defense. The baskets were exchanged with Alex being very strong under the baskets, helping in both ends of the court - must have been the new shoes ;-).
Aleko was good in assists and steals, having played a full game earlier in the day with the U16s. Q1 finished 16-15 down. In Q2, we continued with in the same way, with BP running the lanes after defensive steals and scoring at the other end, when he wasn't fouled in the approach (and usually not called for).
Arthur started positively but quickly was called with 3 fouls so wasn't as affective in this quarter. Nevertheless his time was going to come later in the game. We ended up 33-33 at the end of the half.
Q3 went to the opposition as our outside shooting wasn't at its best - 2 out of 9 3point attempts made and now Folkestone had started made most of their 3s. Leon was now with 4 fouls (3 very questionable calls ..) but maintained his cool all throught the remainder of the game, controlling the game, distributing the ball and being the PG that the team have been waiting for, for a while. Lost Q3: 20-13 so trailing by 7 at the beginning of Q4. Joe had a good game in offence with 8pts scored, 1stl but with very questionable calls in defense he was fouled out in Q4. Yao was immense under the baskets helping all throughout the game (having finished a footie game before he arrived) and pulled down 3off and 11def rebounds, 2blk was a solid rock in our defensive pack.
Q4 belonged to Arthur though with 2 3pointers, pulling the gap down, was a constant threat with his drives, stepping onto the free throw line 5 times, scoring 9 out of 11shots and having 3 players fouled out in the process!!
He ended up with 30pts scored, 7rbs, 3 stl and MVP for the game. Alex followed suit with 15pts scored (7 out of 12 attempts), 11rbs, they had no answer to his game, playing the full 40 min !!!
However, it was the team effort that gave us this win, as we played as a unit both in offence and defence, making the right decisions, with only 16 turnovers and a solid 66.7% free throw shooting (always room for improvement here)
Well done to the team and parents for the support and long 200ml+ trip !!
Quarters Q1: 16-15, Q2: 17:18, Q3: 20-13, Q4: 13-28