WARWICKSHIRE Bears 2nds kept their National League Second Division South survival hopes alive with a 39-28 victory at Norwich Lowriders on Sunday.
Once again, the Bears were missing some key members of their second team, due to injuries, but they were lucky to have their Invictus hopefuls, Rick Powell and Andy Roberts back available.
Warwickshire also had to promote their junior player Aaron Grant and turn to their women’s team captain Aimee Hillson to step up to help with their survival fight.
The Bears looked nervous from the tip and made a number of mistakes, allowing Lowriders to score easy baskets and go into an early lead, whilst not being able to make the most of the chances they made at the other end.
The Lowriders built up a healthy 14-6 lead at the end of the quarter.
After the break, the Bears regrouped and tightened up their defence and cut out their earlier mistakes, which helped them get back into the game.
With a stronger defence, the Bears were able to start to make inroads to the Lowriders’ lead and whittle down the advantage that Lowriders had built up.
At the half-time break, Bears had reduced the deficit to four, 18-14.
The third quarter was the major turning point. Building on their strong defence in the second quarter, the Bears were also able to find their way to the Lowriders’ basket, with Grant and Roberts finding shooting opportunities and scoring. The visitors pulled level and by the end of the third quarter they led 28-24.
The last quarter also went to the Bears, who again built on their strong defence whilst young Aaron Grant and Andy Roberts were again able to find the Lowriders’ basket and steer the team to victory.
“That is a magnificent result for the Bears 2,” said coach, Tom Masterson.
“To come so far from home and get the win against a well drilled Lowriders team was brilliant.
“I have to give special mention to young Aaron Grant, who finished as our leading scorer, and for someone so young to accomplish this just shows the talent this young man has.”