Aztecs Lemmings 46 – Craftsmen LT United 55
(14-8; 28-20 [14-12]; 37-36 [9-16]; 46-55 [9-19])
Steve Metson 12; Callum Harvey/Dimi Noltsis 11; Gavin Baker 5
The Lemmings went into this Division 2 encounter on the back of two defeats, against league leaders London Patriots and the Basingstoke Blizzards. With Coach Walker at the helm (deputising for absent Coach Church) the game aims were for the players to enjoy the match, play tough defence and be patient on the offence, moving the ball and taking good shots. They got off to a terrific start with Steve Metson and Dimi Noltsis combining for the first 13 Lemmings points with the Craftsmen scoring just six points from field goals in the first period. Still ahead at the first break the Lemmings increased their lead by half time thanks in part to long-range shots from Rob Deacon and Callum Harvey; they still led by one point with 10 minutes to go, however their strong first half was not quite matched in the third period as the Lemmings missed out on an extra nine points thanks to missed foul shots. In the final quarter the Lemmings started to tire with missed shots and poor passes resulting in quick break opportunities for the visitors. With three minutes to go the gap was seven, with the Lemmings resorting to fouls to stop the clock – a good tactic unless the opposition score their foul shots, which the Craftsmen did!
Foul shooting is still an issue with the Aztec men – nine of 22 attempts were scored by the Lemmings while the visitors scored 14 from their 22 attempts. The final session was a disappointment as the visitors scored 19 points to the Lemmings nine; the Craftsmen’s haul of 19 included nine from 16 free throws and a three-pointer to open the session. The Lemmings contributed to their downfall with 10 fouls, eight of which sent United players to the charity stripe. In the same period the Lemmings made just three of six attempts and were only able to score three times from the field.
Coach Walker’s assessment:
The Lemmings are still trying to get to know each other’s names, let alone get used to the way each other play, so a slow start to the season was inevitable, but they worked really hard throughout this game to secure their first win, and but for a disappointing final period that win would have been secured. Their defensive effort was admirable, and the quick break was excellent throughout the first half. Set plays need work, but good scoring opportunities were created and some fine shooting from mid-range was not always supported from close range with several makeable lay-ups not dropping. The players enjoyed the game and will be determined, I am sure, to put in more work at training in order to improve performances and start recording some wins.
Wellington College is closed on Thursday so there will be no training on October 24th.
Next Lemmings action:
Thursday 24th October: Wellington College CLOSED – NO TRAINING
Monday 28th October: Key Training at Kings Academy 8:30pm – 10:00pm
Wednesday 30th October: Wolfpack Wolves in the Cup at 8:15pm at St Catherine’s School, Bramley
Monday 4th November: Yateley Silverbacks 2s in Div 2 at 8:20pm at Yateley Manor School
Thursday 7th November: Training at Wellington College at 8:00pm
Monday 11th November: Key Training at Kings Academy 8:30pm – 10:00pm
Tuesday 12th November: Kennet Kingfishers in Div 2 at home at 7:30pm