Fab Five Split Games in SBL U16s tournament

Two spirited displays from Storm I, ensure they continue to lead the way.

Dorset Storm I took to the floor on Friday night in the Under 16s Solent League.  Storm went into the tournament shorthanded, with illness and injury allowing them to field only five players.

First up for Storm were the Tigers of Dorchester.  Storm started slowly, but six point to finish the first quarter from Bruce Mercieca helped Storm tie the game at 10.  Storms poor form continued into the second quarter as Dorchester went on a 10 – 2 run to take a 20 – 12 lead.  Charlie Harland added a basket in the penultimate minute of the half, but Storm trailed 20 – 14 at the break.

Storm started the third quarter with some better defensive play, but some poor foul shooting failed to let them capitalise, by the end of the quarter their good defensive work had allowed them to close the gap to 20 – 25.  Storm carried their good defensive display over into the final quarter, and slowly reduced the deficit.  A David Barter score in the final minute gave Storm their first lead, and Mercieca sliced through the defence on the next play to give Storm a 35 – 32 victory.

The result of the middle match between Weymouth and Dorchester was 57 – 20 to Weymouth.

Up next for Storm were Weymouth.  Both teams started in a sloppy manner, which left the coaches frustrated on the sideline.  Neither team managed to take control of the ball game and as a result a low scoring opening quarter finished 7 – 5 to Weymouth.  The quality of the basketball improved in the second quarter as both teams found their flow.  Storm’s inability to hit from the foul line returned again as they missed 10 in the half, luckily they still managed to hold an 18 – 16 advantage heading into the interval.

A good third quarter from Storm saw them extend that lead, led by eight points from David Barter Storm led 31 – 26 heading into the final stanza.  A couple of sloppy defensive plays allowed Weymouth to get easy scores early on, eroding the lead Storm had built up.  A tense middle part to the period saw both teams make mistakes, but a big and-one from Bruce Mercieca gave Storm a 39 – 37 lead with a minute remaining.  Storm though made a couple of mistakes and Weymouth capitalised.  With 3.6 seconds remaining Storm had a chance to win the game, but Weymouth’s defence prevented Storm from getting a look at the basket, and Weymouth finished with a 41 – 39 victory.

Two great performances in the evening, especially when you consider the circumstance from Storm I.  Winning one and losing one is enough to see Storm I still hold the top spot in the league, but Weymouth and Storm II are now within striking distance.

Note: Highlight play of the day, was Lewis Old’s drawing the charging foul… as he predicted pregame!

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