- National Teams
Loughborough University are back on top of BUCS after being crowned the 2023 Men’s basketball champions with a 86-75 win over University of West England Bristol (UWE) on Wednesday in Nottingham.
It marks their fifth title in the last six seasons, while also winning in the women’s and their second team winning the Trophy, further cementing their status as the best university program.
🥇 @lborobasketball are back on top – winning their fifth @bucssport title in the last 6 seasons after defeating UWE 86-75 in the final ! 🏆
🎥 @bucssport pic.twitter.com/Tp8csLi1pk
— Hoopsfix (@Hoopsfix) March 22, 2023
Leicester Riders guard Kimbal Mackenzie picked up MVP after scoring 27 points on 10-of-12 shooting, in a game stacked with BBL talent.
“This one was special to win,” Loughborough Head Coach Will Maynard told Hoopsfix.
“A huge credit has to go to UWE who started the game on fire and really put us on the back foot early. Our group bounced back and found a way to get it done.
“I am so happy for this group of players they have had some difficult moments the past couple of years and just so happy for them they thoroughly deserve it!”
Loughborough had to come from behind, with a fast start from UWE led by Corey Samuels, saw the side from Bristol lead by double digits at the end of the first period.
However, a regroup from Loughborough in the second period led by Evan Walshe and Elijah Bailey saw Riders take a lead into the half, heading into the break on a 13-2 run.
They held off UWE in the third, where they would pull within 4, and rode out the rest of the way to victory.
Walshe had 21 points and 8 rebounds, Bailey had 15, while Blake Bowman added 8.
UWE were led by 19 points – 13 of which came in the first half, 9 rebounds and 5 assists from Bristol Flyers guard Corey Samuels, as Ryan Robinson had 17, and big man Marcus Delpeche battled foul trouble to finish with 9 points, 9 rebounds and 4 blocks.