West Brom Basketball Club enjoyed double delight over the weekend, as their men’s teams both claimed victory in exciting circumstances.
The Black Country side have two teams in two separate divisions in the West Midlands Basketball League, with the second team playing in division two, whilst the first team ply their trade in the Premier division.
The Premier side hosted a talented Broadway Casino Aces team, sporting former BBL duo Martyn and Michael Gayle – but pulled out all the stops to secure a 66-53 victory. CLICK HERE FOR GAME HIGHLIGHTS.
In a tense opening quarter, both sides set out their respective stalls, with West Brom forcing the ball inside on every occasion, whilst the Aces opted to utilise their individual talents.
Neither side could seemingly pull ahead in a quiet offensive period, with the score just 10-8 in the hosts’ favour.
The second quarter saw the Aces look to their outside shooting, and it worked to good effect, with a trio of long-range baskets opening up a lead for the visitors before a last-gasp basket saw them lead 29-27 at the half.
It was in the third period in which West Brom managed to pull away from their opponents, with current team MVP Luke Hatfield scoring 10 of his game-high 27 while Broadway were restricted to just four baskets of their own.
Going into the final stanza with a 45-38 lead, Tim Rudge’s side were prepared for a late push from their frustrated opponents.
But their desperation quickly began to work against them, as both Martyn Gayle and Roel Thompson earned themselves ejections for arguing with the match officials.
That, on top of the ever-increasing energetic atmosphere provided by the West Brom bench saw the hosts grow their lead to double digits before seeing out the game in a comfortable manner.
Earlier in the day, West Brom men’s seconds pulled out the W of their own – with Macauley Pace and Michael Adedeji combining for 30 points as they topped Mavericks 58-54.
In similar circumstances to the Premier division clash, both sides fought hard in the first quarter, with little separating either team as the first buzzer sounded at 12-13 to West Brom.
The visitors then built their lead to seven points as they threatened to streak away from the hosts.
But a flurry of buckets in the final minutes of the half ensured that Mavericks kept in touch and regained the lead by the half-time break.
The third period was all West Brom, with the visitors dropping 22 points through the quarter whilst also holding Mavericks to just nine of their own.
It looked as though the Black Country-men would run away with the game as the final quarter approached, but the spirited hosts would not let the game die.
Fighting back to within four points with just under two minutes remaining, an unlikely comeback could have been on the cards. However, West Brom managed to see out the remaining moments to secure their victory.
Liam Sheridan, Director of Basketball for West Brom, was thrilled with the successful weekend:
“I’m so proud of the club and both of our men’s teams through this weekend’s showings.” he said.
“Our division two team put in a solid performance to remain undefeated while our Premier team played their best game of the season and earned a hard-fought victory of their own.
“This weekend shows exactly what the club is all about. That Premier division game was a true team performance from everyone – the players on-court, the bench and all of the coaching staff too.
“When recruiting for our team we value character over talent, this weekend shows just why.”
West Brom’s Premier division team next face Smith’s Wood Sabres this weekend, whilst the second team travel to Rugeley Raptors 2 on November 1.
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