Sheffield Steelers V Bears & Sheffield Steelers 5 V Bears 3
Sheffield Steelers 95
The Bears debuted in their first Premiership Division season with a crushing defeat against the League and European champions, Sheffield Steelers. Featuring in the game for the Steelers side were number of players that had recently helped the Great Britain side to win Gold at this years World Championships. Also featuring for the Steelers team were a number of junior players, who represent Great Britain at Under 23 level.
In the first quarter the Bears were able to play some basketball with both teams playing a zonal defence. Steelers impressive shooting took them to an early commanding lead with the scores at the end of the quarter Steelers 23 – 12 Bears.
The second quarter saw the Steelers maximizing the pressure on the Bears playing a full court man to man press which the Bears at times struggled to overcome. As the pace and intensity drew the Bears towards more and more errors, Steelers were able to score freely at the Bears basket, whilst allowing only fleeting chances at the home teams basket. Steelers charged forward into the break with a resounding lead of Steelers 51 – 16 Bears.
The third quarter saw no let up of the pressure and grip held by Steelers in their impressive full court pressing game, once again forcing the Bears into a number of turn overs and mistakes. The scores at the end of the third quarter being Steelers 79 – 24 Bears.
The last quarter was all about pride for the Bears as they fought to keep the score below the hundred mark, whilst again trying to find some way of breaking the strangle hold Steelers were exerting from the second quarter of the game, with the game playing out to the final buzzer and the scores finishing at Steelers 95– 32 Bears.
After the game Coach Masterson said “Wow that was a welcome to the Premier league. I really can’t complain about the result or effort from the team today, seeing as they are playing against professional players who are World Champions and a team that are European Champions. It is going to be a tough season this year but we need to choose the games we might have a chance to win,”
Third Division Central
Earlier in the day the Bears 3 team suffered another narrow defeat to the Steelers 4 team. After earlier wins this season, the Bears performance was a significant improvement as they pushed the Steelers team all the way to the very last quarter. The Bears side, which included a large number of junior and developing players, held its own against a well drilled opposition and fought to maintain a close score. Following the final whistle, the score was 46-33.
After the game Coach Dan Smith said “ A hard game today for Bears 3 against a well drilled Sheffield team saw the team lose their first game of the season. Some missed opportunities would of kept it closer but we look forward to the return match at home in Henley-in-Arden”