U18 Double header weekend starts with an important win
Saturday morning saw Ilkeston’s U18’s making a dreary trip up the M1 to Mansfield for their first clash of the season.
Mansfield got off to their trademark fast start while Ilkeston didn’t really get out of second gear. Although Ilkeston’s big men steadily chipped at the lead, Mansfield has a little flurry of success which saw them stretch out the lead to 22 – 10 before Ilkeston steadied the ship to end the first quarter behind by 6. Mansfield 25 – 19 Ilkeston.
The second quarter saw Ilkeston make quick start to clear the deficit, and bring the game level. As the game and the lead ebbed and flowed, Mansfield were starting to score well from the outside. Undeterred, Ilkeston were trapping and pressing at every opportunity finally closing out the half 2 points up. Mansfield 40 – 42 Ilkeston.
The third again saw Mansfield make the better start as they raced to be the first team to hit 50, Ilkeston were just 3 behind but gaining momentum. After a quick time out Ilkeston turned the defensive effort to the max scoring a massive 17 unanswered points which hit Mansfield hard. A couple of baskets at each end saw the third quarter end, Mansfield 58 – 73 Ilkeston.
The final quarter saw some tactical rotations by Ilkeston, which managed to get tired players some much needed rest. Baskets were still being traded fairly evenly as Ilkeston held their own before the final push. Another quick personnel change saw Ilkeston storm into the final last 6 minutes of the game with renewed energy and vigour. Sensing a victory may be close, Ilkeston dug deep on the defensive end and even surpassed the previous quarters effort as they sprinted to an unanswered run of 18 points before Mansfield finally scored. Another couple of token baskets from both teams saw Ilkeston take the win.
Mansfield 71 – 109 Ilkeston.
Massive defensive efforts from everyone lead to easy buckets for the big scorers today, hard work inside from the big’s at both ends sealed the deal. – Coach Nigel Surgay
The Key Points
- Season high 17 points from Ethan Shipstone
- 16 points each for Cam Hearne and Toby Cooper (both guys worked hard for every single one of their points)
- Not to be outdone, an 11 point performance from the captain saw five players in double figures before he got fouled out at the end of the third.
But for his shear doggedness and tenacity, (Coach Surgay lost count of the traps, steals, assists, generally putting his body on the line and scoring a few points along the way) a small mention for Matt Brown is in order. If we awarded a game MVP, he would have won it today.
Oh yes, and some big kid called Taii scored 40 points.