- National Teams
Following on from our Day 1 and Day 2 Recap of the Women’s BUCS Basketball Final 8’s, here is the third and final day, where the eventual winner was crowned…
3rd and 4th Playoff
London Metropolitan University vs. London South Bank University
The two London team’s met at 9 o’clock on the Sunday morning, warming up to play for a medal at 8 am is ridiculous, in my opinion. Neither team seemed too fatigued by the weekend, both coming out in the first with great defensive pressure.
London Met relied heavily on Razanaica in the first half leading the way offensively for the team, however an evenly spread performance by South Bank kept the game close until 2 minutes to go in the half. LSBU were able to pull away to a 9 point lead going into the break thanks to a 10 point run from their guards.
Throughout the third, the game remained out reach for London Met, unable to get the stops needed to close the gap. Coach Kamilieris rallied his team at the start of the forth made a huge push to get back into the game opening the quarter with a 11 point run of their own. Although the game remained close, Met drawing within 2 at one stage, LSBU remained composed and closed out the game for an impressive 3rd place finish, 63-58.
7th and 8th Place Playoff
Loughborough vs. Brighton
Loughborough and Brighton were both coming off tough losses going into the final day of the tournament. With both teams trying to avoid the dreaded 8th place, the two sides came out fighting early on.
Loughborough guards Beth Evans and Katie Whytock came in and had a much better game and Alice Rose also illustrated how she can be defensive presence as well as an offensive threat.
Brighton were down 40-22 at the half.
Loughborough were able to get out in transition a lot more than there last couple of days making it very hard for Brighton to get into the game. This was greatly due to the defence of Ella Hewton, the freshman guard for Loughborough.
The game finished 91-41 in favour of Loughborough. A tough tournament for the two teams but both showed promise and hopefully we will see more of them next year.
5th and 6th Place Playoff
Northumbria vs. Sheffield Hallam
Sheffield, without Emma Camp and Beth Weldon, took on Northumbria in their last game of the competition. Playing for 5th place, Hallam had the daunting task of trying to stop Ta’yani Clark. She had been remarkable all tournament and didn’t plan on changing this.
Clark came out in the first, grabbing rebound after rebound on the defensive end in addition to knocking down pull up jump shots on the offensive end and finishing well around the basket. Northumbria were much more committed on the defensive end in the first half and held Sheffield to just 20 points, the majority being created by guard Christina Grima. Despite Sheffield efforts, Northumbria were up comfortably at the half, 40-20.
During the second half Ta’yani caught fire! She hit three consecutive three pointers to open the half and extend to lead to 49-20. Grima responded for Sheffield getting a couple of baskets of the dribble before Ta’yani hit another three and Northumbria were back in control of the game. Despite a huge block at the start of the quarter from Helen Francis of Sheffield sparking a little offence,
Northumbria rolled through the fourth quarter and comfortably took 5th place, the game finishing 79-48.
Leeds metropolitan Carnegie vs UWIC (Written by Sam)
I originally had no intention of filming the women’s final and was looking forward to a two hour break to get some food and chill out (all I had to eat yesterday was a packet of Haribo Tangfastics courtesy of Lynda Clark-big shout out to you!). However, I have been meaning to start covering Women’s basketball for a while and a few people on Twitter had shown interest so I thought why not. When on the first possession of the game, Leeds Met’s point guard Keesha Tate pulled a disgussssting crossover, took it to the rack for the hoop and the harm I realised I’d made the right decision!
After the first quarter Leeds Met were up 22-17 off the back of dominant play from Loui Hall. Even though I had seen neither team play over the Final 8’s (except from glances from the men’s court), after the first quarter I was sure Leeds Met had this in the bag. UWIC were looking a little out of sync, whilst Leeds Met were moving the ball beautifully with Keesha Tate running the point to perfection and Loui Hall not being able to be stopped down low.
At the half Leeds Met were up 50-41 at the half, with UWIC’s speedy point guard Stef Collins single handedly keeping them it. No-one could stay in front of her. Loui Hall remained dominant with a tough inside/outside game, hitting 3’s, crashing the boards and getting putbacks. I was also impressed with the defense of UWIC’s Rebecca Brough, who despite being on the receiving end of a couple of Tate’s nasty crossovers did a great job of staying in front of whoever she was guarding, hustling hard and sliding her feet.
In the second half the Stef Collins show continued for UWIC, as she reeled of 6 straight points to open the 3rd quarter. It was too much Collins and Brough for Leeds Met, as UWIC got their first lead of the game towards the end of the quarter. It was Leeds Met who finished the quarter on top after a Tate floater gave them a 62-61 lead going into the fourth.
The game remained tight in the fourth quarter until a huge Stef Collins three pointer gave UWIC a 7 point cushion at 83-76 with 2:38 left in the game. Leeds Met responded with a 2 (can’t remember who from), and then got a stop at the other end to give them a chance to bring it even closer. Loui Hall, standing at least a foot behind the arc, paused, then pulled up and gunned a huge triple to make it 83-81 (UWIC lead) with 1 minute remaining. Stef Collins advanced the ball and was fouled, and headed to the line to go 1 of 2, 84-81 26.4 seconds remaining Leeds Met possession. Off the ensuing timeout, Jo Claydon hit a tough baseline layup to pull Leeds Met within 1. With 10 seconds left Leeds Met foul and (I think it was) Collins heads to the line going 1/2 again.
Leeds Met got one final shot, a tough Loui Hall jumper which missed sealing their fate. UWIC get the three-peat, winning in the final 85-83 in a thoroughly entertaining game.
Stef Collins was named MVP (no surprise) finishing with 30 points (I think). Loui Hall got the ‘Spirit of the Games’ award finishing with 37 points in an emotional loss for Carnegie.
The final however, has been marred with controversy after it being claimed 17 seconds was let run off the clock as a player fouled out. A fan on the Hoopsfix Fan Page said
Some very questionable decisions i.e. a player sent off after 5 fouls, but the clock carried on losing time for over 17 seconds, but Commissioner failed to re-instate time lost. More interested in protecting the official than getting it right. I was sitting in the front row so I heard the conversation between Referee and Commissioner!!!! In those 17 seconds Leeds could have tied the game, and possibly won in overtime.
If this is true (and it should be relatively easy to find out with a number of cameras at the game), Leeds Metropolitan are well within their right to protest and ask for a replay of the time played after the error. I doubt it would be approved by BUCS, but still a fatal error/decision by the referees that could have cost Carnegie the title.
1. University of Wales Institute, Cardiff (UWIC)
2. Leeds Metropolitan University Carnegie
3, London South Bank University
4. London Metropolitan University
5. Northumbria University
6. Sheffield Hallam University
7. Loughborough University
8. University of Brighton
Also check out the Women’s Top 20 Leading Scorers from the BUCS Final 8’s.
Image Credit: Still Sport Photography