THERE was a bumpy start to the season for the GH Podiatry Cowboys, who fell to Team Solent at Weymouth College.

The Cowboys opened their season with fresh hope after a mixed campaign last season. A few players have moved on while others have been promoted from the ranks of the club or are new to the club altogether.

The new-look Weymouth side featured a mixture of veteran players and young up-and-coming talent who were all looking to establish the Cowboys’ brand of fun, end-to-end attacking basketball.

Unfortunately, the team showed signs of rust early on in the first half. Team Solent raced out to a 13-5 lead while the Cowboys were slow to move the ball on the attacking end.

Giles Heaman injected some urgency into the match for the home side, scoring back-to-back baskets, but it was not enough to slow Team Solent from extending their lead to 21-9.

The Cowboys finally started to come alive after their slow start as Gerry Legg-Saunders traded baskets with the opposition to help reduce the arrears and at the interval the visitors held a 42-22 advantage.

Coach Alex Fuhrmann switched the team to a man-to-man defence for the opening of the second half and the switch paid immediate dividends as Brett Dunster and Jim De Bertrand helped the Cowboys to go on an unanswered eight-point run.

Weymouth kept the pressure up in a spirited, fast-paced second half and reduced the deficit to seven points midway through the final period.

Unfortunately, the Cowboys could not get any closer as a deserving Team Solent finished the match as 79-68 winners.

Coach Fuhrmann accentuated the positives after the match and said: “We would obviously like to win, but we are not going to get too disappointed as it was the first match of the season and we were always going to be a little rusty.

“We definitely picked up our play after the first quarter and showed we have the quality to compete in this league.

“We dominated the third period and we know that if we play like we did in the third then we are going to start winning games soon.”

Cowboys: Brett Dunster 13, Giles Heaman 11, Gerry Legg-Saunders 11, Jake Durston 10, Jim De Bertrand 9, Eric Olson 7, Tommy Hodson 5, Ben Stokey 2, Steve Howlett, Jamie Harris.

MVP: Brett Dunster