Final Score North 53 - South 31
Kevin, Everton and Lee Guinea travelled up to the Douglas Ellis Centre in Birmingham to the West Midlands Basketball Extravaganza at the weekend where the Elite's own Lee Guinea was playing in the All-Star game for Divisions 1-3.
The teams were split between North and South Teams and from the off, it looked a little one-sided. The North had members from MLC, Raiders, Shropshire Warriors (naturally), Northwood Valiants and a surprise in the form of Dwayne Anderson. Barrie Vernie was the coach with 3 win streak to protect. For the south, I could recognise Yardley Mets & Old Sils and only 6 players to the Norths' 9.
So to the tip. Well, it went the North's way who made the conversion .... The North were moving the ball well around the key looking for open shots and fast breaks. The South were playing an aggressive inside game but just couldn't seem to convert points although towards the end of the quarter the South started to find their rhythm and pull some points back but as the South started to work it out, so did the North. The South were relentlessly out defended and the North managed to pull a 10 point lead by the end of the quarter.
In the second quarter, Guinea came on-court and immediately did what he did best. He pressed on in defense and ran the lanes on the offensive play at one stage he ran the lane much faster than he anticipated! The North were still shooting well and the South plugging away in the paint. But for all their efforts the South were still down by 10 at the half.
At the start of the second half the North were hitting everything while the South were playing one-man rebound tennis for a lot of the quarter. The North managed to extend their lead to 13 points.
In the final quarter the frustration was starting to creep into the South's squad. I suppose it didn't help that there was a lot of trash talking happening leading to some personal battle being fought on-court. Some heated play between Dwayne and Old Sils' main guard was great to watch (they hugged it out after, don't worry). By half way through the final quarter the North had extended their lead to 20 points, but a late surge and scores to settle saw the South make a last minute surge but the North's 3 point shooter (Rob) had a hot hand, and to rub salt in the wounds there was an amusing self alley-oop that took everyone by surprise but everyone clapped after.
In summary the game was great to watch. Everyone seemed to be having a really good time, and maybe if the South had more players it may have been a closer game.
Well done to all who played and a big shout out to Guinea for representing the Shropshire Warriors Elite.