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UEL Basketball 1st cruise against Bath

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UEL Basketball 1st cruise against Bath

UEL Basketball 1st 104 – 68 Bath

UEL men’s basketball opened their BUCS South Premier title defence with an emphatic 104-66 win over Bath University at SportsDock.

UEL, who went undefeated last season, came into the match with a changed line up and a fresh intake of exciting young talent. Lamar Roberts made his first appearance at starting centre which signified his hard work and development during the off-season.

Roberts scored a lay-up and converted a free throw to start the match, but got into foul trouble and had to sit out much of the first half.

Bath proved tough early on and hung close to the champions. But with the score tied at 10 apiece, UEL captain Dougie Bennett sank three straight three-pointers to give his side some breathing space.

UEL led 28-21 after the first quarter, but the second quarter was won by the visitors. Bennett, who fractured his ankle during the BUCS Final 8s in March, tweaked his ankle and sat out the rest of the match as a precaution. Bennet said after the match that his ankle was not a cause for concern.

In the third quarter, UEL finally found their stride. London Lions player Blayne Freckleton knocked down a trio of three-pointers and UEL outscored Bath 36 to 8 in the quarter.

UEL eased their way through the final period of play. Roberts, who had returned to the game, finished a lay-up to give UEL their 100th point, and punctuated the match with a slam dunk.

But head coach Jonathan Campbell was not satisfied with his team’s 38-point win: “We played poorly. The first half wasn’t good enough, the second half was better. I think the fact that we made jump shots got us out of a hole. I thought we were lucky to make a few threes. Blayne stepped up in the second half. But overall, we’ve got to play better to beat other teams in this league, and that first half could cost us games.”

Bennett also saw room for improvement: “We got it down in the end, but it wasn’t very good. Defensively we were lacklustre. We left the middle wide open and they were scoring far too many lay-ups. Second half we tightened up a little bit and we defended better. We kept them outside the lanes and made them shoot over the top of us. That really wasn’t one of their strengths, so in the end we got it done. Offensively we played well. If we hit our shots we’re hard to stop and that’s what we’ve done today. We made 16 three-pointers. Everyone shot good.”

UEL take to the road next Wednesday to play Southampton Solent at 5:30pm