NBL Under 16s Vs Cardiff Archers 23-11-2013

Dorset Storm Basketball Club National League Under 16s versus Cardiff 23rd November 201308Strong first half performance is enough for the NBL Under 16s as they hold on for a 78 – 70 victory over Cardiff Archers.

Dorset Storm (23, 21, 15, 19) 78

Cardiff Archers (14, 16, 18, 22) 70

Dorset Storm Under 16s National League side entertained Cardiff Archers at Rossmore Leisure Centre on Saturday afternoon.  Cardiff were coming into the game on the back of a big win versus Bristol Academy while Storm entered the game having had a weekend off.

Storm started with Deividas Liveris and Daniel Riggs in the front court whilst Christian Farah, Will Taylor and Tom Storey were in the back court.  After Cardiff opened the scoring, Storm answered with a Riggs inside score followed by Farah from three point range which gave them an early 5 – 2 lead.  Storm moved the ball well at the offensive end and found themselves with plenty of scoring chances in the early exchanges.  Some good defensive play from Harvey Nichols and Josh Westlake helped Farah add two further scores before Nathan Mahoney and Bradley Bennett helped Storm go on a 10 – 0 tear late in the quarter to take a 23 – 14 lead into the break.

Storm continued to play well as some aggressive defence and great ball and player movement on offence resulted in them getting off to a flying start in the second quarter. Dorset Storm Basketball Club National League Under 16s versus Cardiff 23rd November 201315Harry Jackson, Westlake, Mahoney, Nichols and Riggs all added scores in the opening four minutes as Storm stretched their lead to 31 – 16.  A timeout from Cardiff did little to stem the flow from Storm as Taylor nailed a three ball and followed it up with a slice drive on the break as Storms lead peaked at 19, 40 – 21. As the half closed Cardiff maintained their relentless attack on Storms defence, which on several occasions was a step slow as the visitors closed the gap to 14 points at the half, as Storm led 44 – 30.

Storm started with intent at the beginning of the second half as Riggs and Storey got early scores for the home side.  Some poor defence then allowed Cardiff open shots as they on occasions literally skipped into the heart of the Storm defence before scoring.  Poor rebounding was also giving Storm plenty of extra possessions to play defence on.  Mahoney and Taylor added four points each on offence to keep Cardiff at bay during the middle part of the stanza.  A 6 – 0 run late in the quarter though was more than enough for the Storm coaching staff as they called a timeout.  Coming out of the timeout some strong defence from Liveris and a steal from Taylor helped Storm finish the third period with a little more control, leading 59 – 48.

It was Cardiff who started the final period looking the hungrier of the two sides as they battled relentlessly for every loose ball and rebound, something that Storm seemed not prepared to do. By the third minute of the quarter Cardiff had closed the deficit to just six points at 61 – 55.  Storm responded following a timeout and for the first time in the game played with the sort of energy that has been seen throughout their performances so far this season.  Dorset Storm Basketball Club National League Under 16s versus Cardiff 23rd November 201311Bennett and Riggs both ran in scores to give Storm some breathing space.  Six points from Taylor in the final two minutes and the fact that Taylor along with Bennett and Storey kept their cool down the stretch from the foul line allowed Storm to hold on for a 78 – 70 win.

For Storm it was a game of two halves that will concern the coaches the most.  The team played some great basketball in the opening half and much of it was with three of their starters in foul trouble, with a whole host of players stepping up and making big contributions.  The second half performance saw Storm lucky to come out with the win as the conceded 40 points in the half and lost both quarters.  For Storm Will Taylor, Bradley Bennett, Tom Storey and Dan Riggs all netted double figures, this again showed the good balance on offence from the side. Lead coach Luke Kemish despite being able to take positive from the first half thinks that his team needs to reflect on their defensive effort first:

“The most disappointing thing was our defensive effort. It lacked intensity, communication and enthusiasm throughout.  We failed to meet our team defensive standards in three out of the four quarters. That’s disappointing, as we have taken great pride in our defensive effort – it’s the one thing we control and we didn’t do a good job today.

Dorset Storm Basketball Club National League Under 16s versus Cardiff 23rd November 201313The stats for this game don’t tell the whole story.  In the second half in particular we failed to consistently do all the little things that don’t show up on the stats sheet – boxing out, communicating, cutting hard… we seemed to lack some hunger for the game.

On the flip side in the first half we played some of the best basketball we have all season! The challenge now is to make training reflect that first half intensity level and turn that into a positive for next weekend, as we have a point to prove to ourselves now.”

Storm have a week to regroup and train well before Stroud Sharks visit Rossmore on Saturday.

Scorers: *Taylor 16, *Storey 15, Bennett 14, *Riggs 12, Mahoney 8, *Farah 7, Nichols 2, Jackson 2, Westlake 2, *Liveris.