- National Teams
So it’s 10.37pm (gone Midnight as I finish it..yeah I’ve been procrastinating) as I start to write this and am shattered from a long afternoon of BUCS basketball, but I couldn’t go to sleep leaving you guys out the loop could I? Brief recap of all the day’s games with some random thoughts at the end….
Game 1: Leeds Met vs Durham
This was a game that definitely excited me and turned out being the best game of the day. Both teams steamrolled their way through the regular season and despite Durham being from a league below, they had proven they can hang with the big boys after beating Leeds Met in the National League earlier on in the season.
Leeds came out hard, with a lot more urgency and were up 8-3 just under 3 minutes in. Carnegie’s defense was on point. They were led by Ladi Brown who locked up Scott Morton early on, staying in front of him and using his long arms to pester him. Morton got into foul trouble early on and it stayed that way throughout the game as he spent periods on and off the bench which no doubt affected Durham’s chances. At the end of the first Leeds were only up 22-16, but the score didn’t reflect the game at all as Durham were playing timid and being dominated by Leeds.
In the second quarter Durham regrouped and started playing more to their level, tying the game up at 31 with 5 minutes left in the first half. From there on there was a huge momentum change with both Paul Elderkin and Morton finally getting their games going, getting stops, gunning 3’s and finishing strong around the basket to stretch Durham’s first lead of the game to 10. Leeds foughtback, but went into the half down 43-39.
One guy who was quiet in the first half was Adrian Fenyn. The American (?) big man musta had around 10 in the first half and made his presence felt but wasn’t dominant. In the second half that changed and Durham simply had no answer for him, he was so strong and physical, getting rebounds, protecting the basket and being unstoppable offensively. In the end he was too much, with Durham succumbing to Leeds Met 89-79 behind 37 Fenyn points.
Northumbria vs Oxford
Now if I’m honest I didn’t think Oxford had a chance in this one and I was feeling smugly confident with my own predictions when Northumbria came out hard and were up 14-6 off the back of 6 Ian Berry points 7minutes in. They were all over them and Oxford looked overwhelmed. Then out of nowhere, just as in the first men’s game of the day, the momentum totally shifted, Oxford kept their composure and turned the tables. At the end of the 1st quarter Oxford were up 17-16.
It was very back and forth in the second quarter, but essentially Northumbria had no answer for Reed Doucette and Oxford’s other American big man Stephen Danley.Oxford remained up 33-29 at halftime.
In the second half Oxford just pulled away. Northumbria looked all over the place offensively and weak defensively which is never a good recipe for winning a basketball game. Oxford stretched their lead, being up 53-42 after three, then sealing the game at 72-59 to advance.
Loughborough vs LSBU
I think pretty much everyone in the arena knew which way this would go and there’s not much to say other than that it did. LSBU routed Loughborough 83-60. LSBU played harder, smarter and more aggressive, not giving LSBU an inch. David Ajumobi was unstoppable, I’m surprised they didn’t run more iso plays for him to be honest and big Ave was dominant too,
London Met vs Worcester
This I think was probably the most hyped game of the day. Two big, strong teams going at it with people even giving London Met an outside chance of winning it. In my mind I had Worcester winning it and winning it comfortably, so was shocked when London Met stormed to an 8-0 lead. Disaster struck for Worcester when only a few minutes in BBL star Harry Disy went down with an ankle injury and was taken to the bench, further bad luck came as Jordan Ranklin got in foul trouble and then Captain Roy Owen also went down with a knee injury later in the second quarter.
Worcester never seemed to get in the game. London Met clearly wanted it more and were out-rebounding and simply out-hustling them. The only guys who were bringin’ it for Worcs was Modesta Sidlaukas who musta ended with at least 5 or 6 threes, if not more and Damian Cope. At the half, Worcester were down 49-37.
To cut a long story short, London Metropolitan led the whole game that was until a disastrous sequence with 1m 30s left in the game. With Normantas at the line, he drains both free throws to put Worcester within 1 at 78-77, then he proceeded to steal the inbound off Arturo Noha and score plus the foul. He made the free throw to put Worcester up 80-79. London Met missed at the other end to give the ball back to Worcester, where Roy Owen managed to get to the line, he however, missed them both giving London Met another chance. Juju Bola is fouled in the act of shooting and is sent to the line with 30 seconds left. He makes the first, 80-79, but misses the second. Worcester get the ball back and Roy Owen gets sent to the line again, and again he misses them both. Met rebound, Noha throws up a kinda running pump at the buzzer and misses to seal the game. Worcester go through 80-79. A game they were behind for all but 1 minute 30 seconds it. Crazy.
Read Women’s BUCS Basketball Final 8’s Day 1 Recap for a recap of the how the women got on.
Matchups Tomorrow: (as for times I have no ideas as have lost me schedule, all I do know is that it starts at 11am..I will tweet it when I find out times)
Men’s Semi Finals
Leeds Met vs Oxford
LSBU vs Worcester
Men’s 5th to 8th
Durham vs London Met
Northumbria vs Loughborough
Women’s Semi Finals
Leeds Met vs London Met
UWIC vs LSBU
Brighton vs Northumbria
Sheffield Hallam vs Loughborough