Age no issue as youthful Ravens beat older opponents
- Credit: Archant
London Community Basketball League: Tower Hamlets Ravens U16 43 KC Knights U18 40
Tower Hamlets Ravens under-16 team showcased their talents against an older and stronger side in KC Knights under-18s with a 43-40 win.
In what was their first game of the season as a team and playing in the Community Basketball League, Ravens were looking to measure up against other talent across London and there would be no better opponent than the Knights.
As expected, Knights were in bullish mood as they powered their way to an early 10-0 lead against a nervous and inexperienced Ravens team.
A quick timeout by Coach Albert Ziwa for Ravens seemed to have steadied the ship as they responded with their own two quick lay-ups before the end of the first quarter which were set up by point guard Tobi Falola
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If the young Ravens were going to prevent an embarrassing blow-out, the emphasis would have to shift to defence and prevent Knights from scoring.
Eduardo Andre took on this responsibility and led his team mates as he blocked any attempts at the basket from KC Knights.
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Each block from Andre saw Ravens grow in confidence as they used their fast-break to score.
With the scores sitting at 22-20 to KC-Knight, Ravens’ Aaron Badibo found his shooting range as he drained back to back three pointers to force Knights into an early time out before the half.
The nervous Ravens were nowhere to be seen going in the second half.
Knights continued to use their experience, height and size to their advantage, but the Ravens relied on their ball movement and defence bringing the third quarter to a finish at 35 all.
Coach Ziwa showed the trust he has in his younger and developing players as he introduced them into such a close and intense game.
The trust was repaid when Jaheim Pink showed confidence and experienced beyond his years as he was vocally noticeable on defence and impressive on offence, being able to get into the key after skilfully defeating his defender which led him to score a lay-up.
As a result, Knights’ coach called a time-out and ordered his team to do push ups at the side of the basketball court.
With two minutes left of the game, Knights continued to challenge the Ravens and each time Ravens found an answer.
This time it was Lexuel Maize who stopped the opposition’s best player allowing Falola to show his point guard skills and dictate the pace of the game as he led his team to well deserved and impressive victory against a very powerful opponent.