- National Teams
England Under-16’s made it two wins from two after following up Friday night’s victory over France Under-15’s with a 70-57 success last night to go 2-0 up in the three-game preparation series.
Mate Okros top scored with a game-high 22 points, while Kareem Queeley scored 12 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter as England came from behind to record their second win in as many days.
“Game 2 has served us very well in terms of battling through difficult moments and showing good bounce-back-ability,” said Head Coach Alan Keane.
“We were nine down in the third and finished the game winning the fourth quarter by 16 points off the back of nine consecutive defensive stops. That there lays the foundation for us to be successful in the future.
“Consecutive stops and pushing the ball in transition with lane discipline gives our players opportunities to maximise their strengths. We are taking small steps forward each day, growing together on/off the court and learning in every moment.
“[Sunday] we will be looking to repeat more of what we delivered in the fourth quarter [last night] for longer stretches and dictate the pace of the game with our defence.”
The visitors fell 10-9 behind after a low-scoring opening quarter, but were able to increase their scoring output in the second as they edged into a slender 29-28 advantage at half-time.
France came out the stronger of the two sides when the action continued and led by as many as nine points midway through the third period. Keane’s side narrowed the gap to a three-point deficit by the end of the quarter as they headed into the fourth, trailing 48-45.
They were able to continue their momentum and Queeley stepped up with 12 points as England outscored their opponents 25-9 in the final quarter – holding France scoreless down the stretch to run away with a double-digit victory.
England frequently made it to the line and shot 20-of-48 free throw attempts, whilst scoring 31 points on the fast break with a total of 21 turnovers – seven less than their opening game.
They play their third and final warm-up game against France Under-15’s tonight before returning home to continue preparations.