- National Teams
The regular season of the BUCS Premier divisions came to an end this week with the playoffs to reach the Final 8’s set.
Northumbria, Loughborough, East London and Brunel had already secured their places on the penultimate week in our previous BUCS recap.
The final four spots will be decided with four playoff games taking place next week in a North v South battle based on the teams positions in their respective divisions. Worcester and Durham have home advantage amongst the North teams as they host UCL and Oxford, while Leeds Beckett Carnegie travel to Bath, and LSBU entertain Sheffield Hallam.
Loughborough inflicted a second defeat on North winners Northumbria last week with an 84-80 victory. Conner Washington led the way with 21 points, with Anthony Rowe and Levi Noel adding 15 and 14 points. As for the visitors, Jack Preston top scored with a game-high 25 points, while Mick DiStasio had 17 and Lewis Champion 16.
“After a little bit of an up and down regular season, it’s great to secure that second spot in the league,” Loughborough Head Coach Mark Jarram said. “The guys deserve it by how hard they’ve played. We now have to continue to improve and make sure we are fully prepared for the playoffs. We are all looking forward to it again.”
Elsewhere, in the North, Leeds Beckett Carnegie defeated Durham 98-79 on the final day with 28 points coming from Darrell Bethune. American Ricky Fetske added 20 points, and there were 17 points for Paul Holland. The visiting Durham side were without Bryan Hockaday as he continued his recovery from a dislocated finger.
The final game saw Worcester ensure they finished in third place as they ran out comfortable 85-66 winners at home to Sheffield Hallam, who were unable to avoid a bottom-placed finish.
Final NORTH Standings: Northumbria 8-2; Loughborough 7-3; Worcester 5-5; Durham 4-6; Leeds Carnegie 3-7; Sheffield Hallam 3-7
East London finished their campaign with a perfect 10-0 record in the South after beating Bath 106-80 on the road in their final game. Second-placed Brunel ended on a high with a 64-46 win against UCL to ensure their only blemishes on their record came against the division winners. Also, London South Bank made sure of third place with an 88-83 victory away at Oxford.
The regular season was finally completed this week with the last remaining game taking place as Bath claimed a 70-45 win over Oxford. Four players hit double figures, led by Jack Hulme’s 14 point haul with another 13 coming from Tom Riley.
Final SOUTH Standings: UEL 10-0; Brunel 8-2; LSBU 6-4; Bath 4-6; Oxford 2-8; UCL 0-10
Worcester v UCL
Durham v Oxford
Bath v Leeds Beckett Carnegie
LSBU v Sheffield Hallam
(ties to be played 4th March)