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BASKETBALL: Devon defeat for inexperienced Huskies
2:27pm Thursday 17th October 2013 in Sport
EXETER UNIVERSITY 41 WEYMOUTH HUSKIES 18
HAVING spent the whole of last season without any competitive fixtures, and with half a squad that had never played league basketball before, it was always going to be a tall order for Weymouth Huskies at Exeter University in the opening game of the Exeter District Women’s Basketball League.
The lack of experience was evident in the first quarter with Weymouth showing little fluency or confidence in offense.
They were slightly better defensively but with just a single basket from Jane Guppy to show for their efforts they trailed 16-2 at the end of the first 10 minutes.
However, the second quarter was a different affair entirely as the Huskies stepped up a gear defensively and were able to release Carly Lawes on a number of fast breaks to score some easy points. Anna Goulding also came off the bench to display some very energetic and effective defensive work.
With the final seconds of the first half ticking away, Rosie Moore launched a speculative shot from just in front of the halfway line, which almost went in, and at the end of a much more competitive quarter the Huskies trailed 27-12.
In the third quarter, Lawes again led the main attacking threat for Weymouth but Laura Bucke, Guppy and Steph Jones were all contributing effectively.
The Huskies created a number of openings for Bucke and Guppy inside the University defence, unfortunately they were unable to take advantage of several free throws after being fouled in the act of shooting, which would have helped them close the gap.
A strangely low-scoring fourth quarter from both teams showed the best and worst of the Huskies’ play, with hard defensive graft being let down by giving the ball away in possession far too easily.
However, there was much for coach Andy Blackwood to be positive about.
“In the past, Exeter University have been the sort of team that have blown us off the court so I’m very pleased with the way we competed with them and made them work hard for their victory,” he said.
“Our defensive display in particular was fantastic for three quarters once we’d shaken off some initial nerves.
“With a little more confidence and composure on offense I think we’re going to make a real impact in this division.”
Huskies’ debutant India Hod-der was also positive about her first experience of competitive basketball, adding: “Altho-ugh I’ve played a little at school, I’ve only been with the Huskies for four weeks and tonight was my first-ever proper game.
“It was a little confusing to begin with but I think we all improved as the game went on. I’m very excited about the rest of the season.”
Huskies: Lawes 12pts, Guppy 3, Goulding 2, Bucke 1, Hodder, Jones, Moore, Herman MVP: Lawes
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