U15 Boys Basketball v NS Stars
U15 boys learn a lot in first competitive basketball encounter
On Wednesday 21 June a group of year 10 boys travelled to Gordano for their first basketball fixture. Now that the U16 boys have finished school the baton falls to the year 10 boys to keep the basketball team going. What they lack in experience they more than make up for in enthusiasm and I can see this group of boys getting better and better over the next year.
Aside from Sam Elmi and Jacob Kinsella, none of the boys had played basketball for the school before so taking on the Stars U16 team was always going to be a stern test. Unfortunately this game clashed with DofE and cricket which meant that quite a few of the boys that trained were unable to play; fortunately two boys from year 8 (Kyle and Jazper) stepped in to bolster the numbers.
Kyle BARRETT, Brendan BENNETT, Femi ELEGBEDE, Samatar ELMI, Jacob KINSELLA-FRESHWATER, Dexter MOTT, Matthew PARSONS, Jazper PEACEY, Paul RICKARDS, Mickey TRENEAR-CHITTEM, Nabil WARSAME, Kai WEST, Hao Hao ZHANG
Samatar, Nabil, Jacob, Kai and Zhihao took to the court as the first five and it was them who drew first blood after almost 2 minutes of ‘pointless’ basketball. The boys were doing well defensively and a little early defensive pressure knocked the Stars momentarily off of their game. The boys worked the ball up the court via Jacob Kinsella who eventually got himself open inside to shoot a neat jumper giving the St Kath’s boys the lead. Unfortunately their lead didn’t last long and their first points really kicked started the Stars into action. They came back at a furious pace and it wasn’t long before they built up a double figure lead.
Before the game we spoke about concentrating on the basics of the game; man up on defence and transition quickly back over the half way marked when you’ve lost the ball looking to pick up your man as he comes on to you. On offence just keep running forward and passing the ball up the court, work it to someone who is open and put the shot up. The SK boys were quite capable of doing both of those things but for one reason or another they couldn’t do them both at the same time and therefore either let the Stars have easy points on the fast break or gave away too much cheap possession.
The temperature was proving to be a real test of their fitness levels and 3 days at 30 degrees was starting to take its toll on some of the group. The Stars continued to add points to their total but turned down easy fast break baskets and started to give their offensive playbook a real outing. This was fantastic experience for the SK boys who were enjoying being tested in all aspects of the game. Their only real points threat was from Jacob who was scoring well considering that he was having to play for longer than he might have liked given the temperature! Jacob actually top scored with 10 points and was an excellent leader for the less experienced members of the team. Sam Elmi and Mickey Chittem helped out with two point efforts of their own to take the SK total to 14. The Stars eased to beyond 60 for their finishing total but despite the result there were a huge amount of positives to take from the game.
Kyle Barrett was technically one of the best players on the SK team which is hugely impressive considering his age. Brendan Bennett stole a lot of ball on defense and showed his ability to read the game well. Femi was athletically superior under both hoops and rebounded a huge amount of ball making himself a real nuisance. Samatar has a brilliant skill level and was slick handling and passing the basketball. Jacob was a fantastic leader and role model for his team mates from start to finish. Dexter’s movement defensively and offensively was really clever and was responsible for working a number of openings to the basket. Matt Parsons did the simple things really well and didn’t try to over complicate the game where others tried too much. Jaz Peacey really stood out in terms of performance; this explosive and talented athlete drew great praise from his 16 year old opponents at full time. Paul Rickards had the confidence to put up shots when he was open and also has excellent movement. Mickey Chittem was another confident shooter who was close on a number of occasions before getting in the scorebook. Nabil led with his handling and had the confidence to drive to the basket multiple times even attempting to reverse lay-up on one occasion. Kai West was athletics on defence and managed a vital intervention more than once. Zhihao gave an accomplished all round performance and showed his skills with and without the ball.
Well done gentlemen. Lots of hard work to come in training!