- National Teams
After the Day 1 and Day 2 recap of BUCS Final 8’s, finally got around to finishing Day 3 this morning. Tears were shed, and champions were crowned on the final day of the BUCS Basketball Final 8’s Championships 2010.
London Met v Loughborough (7th/8th place playoff)
Rushing to the arena for the first game of the day (a 9am tip!), my anxieties of being late were put to rest when 15 minutes before tip (as I arrived) I see the London Met teambus pulling up! A sign of either how little they cared about the 7th/8th place game or perhaps how confident they were?
As expected London Met steamrolled over Loughborough off the back of strong work on the boards from big man ‘Meka who got offensive putback after offensive putback (a recurring theme for Loughborough over the three days with every team they faced) and point guard Jeffrie Danchie’s outside shooting and penetration.
Final score: 96-74
Worcester v Oxford (3rd/4th place playoff)
I was quite excited about this game as Oxford were the surprise of the tournament for me. I really didn’t think they were as good as they were, but was quickly corrected after their first game of the tournament.
Worcester were without BBL players Harry Disy (who injured his ankle a couple of minutes into the first game of the tournament) and Modestas (ankle injury early in their second game). The key for Worcester would be stopping Oxford big man Stephen Danley (no small task), but as he banged a triple on the first Oxford offence it was evidence of things to come.
At the half it was a close fought game with Oxford leading 47-41. Danley had been dominant; shooting, dishing, blocking and dunking. Kastytis Normantas was unstoppable for Worcester with two 4 point plays in the half and a number of other tough drives to the bucket.
In the second half it was both Danley and Normantas continuing to lead each team with a few leach changes it remained tight. With around a minute remaining, Kastytis nailed a huge three to give Worces the lead at 78-77. Danley was fouled at the other end and made both to regain the lead for Oxford at 79-78.
After a couple of empty possessions, it was Worcesters possession off a timeout with 7.3 second remaining down 1. I was sure we were going to see the first buzzer beater of the tournament, but inexplicably, Kastytis ran down the clock, drove…and dished!? Buzzer went with Worcester not being able to get a shot off before time expired.
Oxford with a big win, sealing their 3rd place finish, with the reigning champs dropping to 4th.
Final score: 79-78
Durham vs Northumbria (5th/6th place playoff)
In the playoff for 5th place finish, Durham and Northumbria were up next. Durham came out strong, playing some of the best basketball in the tournament outside of Leeds Met’s game yesterday. Scott Morton and Mark Elderkin were making some great dishes, Paul Elderkin had bought his dunking game finishing with 3 in this game (with another that was disallowed for travel, one missed off the back rim bouncing back to half court, and another missed due to being intentionally fouled!), as well as throwing a lob for Anthony Trigg who banged it home for the first (and only) alley oop of the 3 days.
At the half, Durham were up 48-38 with a scoreline that didn’t reflect the game with Durham totally outclassing a Northumbria team that definitely did not play to their full potential throughout the tournament. Northumbria’s Nils Steuber was however unstoppable again at points, with a game and body that you would never think could be a dominant force.
At the end of the third Durham had pulled away leading 71-52 and Northumbria had effectively given up.
Final score: 91-75
Leeds Met vs LSBU
In what was the most anticipated game of the tournament, the only two teams remaining, Leeds Met Carnegie and London South Bank University went head to head to be called BUCS Champions.
Leeds Met had the motivation of finishing in the 3rd spot for the last two years, whilst LSBU wanted to regain the title they had won in 2008 and lost out on in 2nd place last year.
From the opening tip, it became apparent this was going to be slug match, with a lot of missed shots and fouling. Three minutes in, only two baskets had been scored, a Fenyn reverse and a Charlando Brown drive and finish to put it tied at 2.
As every other team had found when playing LSBU, they are extremely hard to keep off the offensive boards and Leeds Met had the same troubles with Armand in particular providing LSBU with a number of second chances. LSBU were down throughout the first quarter until Isaac hit a tough jumper in the lane at the first quarter buzzer to give LSBU a 14-13 lead.
LSBU had done a great job of containing Fenyn and Medved in the first quarter, but that didn’t last very long as the beginning of the second quarter saw Fenyn reel off 8 straight points, followed by an Istvan Herceg 3 to put Leeds Met up 23-18 at the halfway point of the second period. Medved almost put down a ridiculous dunk, taking off from way out but it proved a little too ambitious as he fell short of the rim whilst getting fouled.
LSBU hung with Leeds Met off the back of more offensive rebounds and putbacks, but went into the half down 31-29. LSBU were deep into their rotation throughout the first half using 9 of the 10 players on the roster, whilst Leeds Met went 7 deep, with Siddal and Istvan Herceg being used off the bench.
The next period was back and forth with the game remaining with Leeds Met up by two 48-46.
With just under 3 minutes remaining, Leeds Met were up 63-58 when Supola was fouled shooting. LSBU Coach Mundy Castle berated the referees on the call, and ended up getting T’d up in what would be, in my opinion, the deciding point of the game. Despite Supola missing both technical free throws, and then going 1 of 2 on his personal foul free throws, big man Mike Medved scored on the ensuing Leeds Met possession to give Carnegie a 66-58 lead with around 1:40 minutes remaining.
From there on out, LSBU began fouling (even getting called for a very questionable intentional foul) and Leeds Met sealed the deserved win at the line. Not a pretty final, but got the job done.
Final score: 74-63
Adrian Fenyn was named MVP finishing with 28 points, whilst LSBU’s Charlando Brown was given the ‘Spirit of the Games’ fairplay award.
1. Leeds Metropolitan University Carnegie
2. London South Bank University
3. University of Oxford
4. University of Worcester
5. Durham University
6. Northumbria University
7. London Metropolitan University
8. Loughborough University
Read the full recap of Day 3 of the Women’s BUCS Basketball Final 8’s.