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Weekend Roundup - Week 11 - Golden girls roll on!

Week 11 of the 2022/23 Junior National League season saw 7 of our junior teams in action across the region.

The weekly roundup will highlight the results and key performers from each weekend across the programme along with quotes from coaches about each performance. We continue the series with Saturday 10th & Sunday 11th December.

Saturday 10th December

COLBC U14 Boys White vs Bradford Dragons

Result: 20-74 (L)

Coach Jake Shuttlewood: "An exciting game with end to end play from both sides. The game started with competitive energy from CoL which carried from start to finish. The boys battled hard with perseverance to challenge a taller and more experienced side. Well done to all with lots to work on just before Christmas and in the new year."

Performer of the game: Daniel Pierce

COLBC U14 Boys Black vs Barnsley Metros

Result: 26-95 (L)

Coach Jake Shuttlewood: "A hard battle against a strong Metro's side which forced us to play a physical game. The boys did just that, with lots of hard-nosed defensive stops and strong moves to the basket. The boys continue to push in-sync through their quick moves in the half-court but struggled to finish a lot of the attacks at the basket due to the Metro's physicality. A new experience for the boys playing against a team with much larger height but ultimately an opportunity to learn and grow together as a team to beat future opponents with the same attributes.

Performer of the game: Aidan Dogra

COLBC U14 Girls Black vs Manchester Mystics III

Result: 25-47 (L)

Coach Sian Wood: "We played hard and passed ahead in attempt to score points against the Manchester3 team in the first half. Some great lay ups and successful free throw shots (as worked on during training) scored us vital points on the board. A lack of focus in the second half limited our scoring opportunities and increased the gap on the scoreboard. Definitely something to think about ahead of next weeks game against the Huskies."

Performer of the game: Sophie Jiano-Duke

York Eagles vs COLBC U16 Boys White

Result: 66-35 (L)

Coach Murray Bingham: "The team put up a strong fight early on but ultimately fell to their opponents. The players worked hard and showed great attacking prowess at times, but it wasn't enough to secure the victory. Despite the score, the team kept their head up and were optimistic and I feel confident they will make great progress across the second half of the season."

Performer of the game: Briel Lipo

COLBC U16 Boys Black vs Tees Valley Mohawks

Result: 68-66 (W)

Coach Marcus Browne: "Working on rebounding and zone attack in practice prepared us for the opposition. Great bench energy, solid defense and improved passing are all positives taken away from this game. The boys showed incredible resilience coming back from a 15 point deficit to a nail biting end to the game."

Performer of the game: Marcus Ho

COLBC U16 Boys Gold vs Newcastle Eagles

Result: 54-56 (L)

Coach Sam Messam: "We welcomed Angel of the North natives Newcastle to LBU in a battle for 7th place in the NBL North Premier. The Eagles struck first with six quick points before CoL managed to open their scoring account against a tough Newcastle defence. The score was close for the first five minutes but then a run by the visiting Eagles saw them take a 26 - 20 lead into the break. The third quarter belonged to the Eagles as they pushed their lead out to 12 points. As the 4th quarter began, the CoL came out determined to close the gap and compete with the visitors. The run started with Isaac Durant, who was then joined by Harry Njengue, Will Tracey and Josh Norton as the home side poured in six straight baskets and held the visitors to just 4pts in the first five minutes of the quarter, forcing the Eagles into a timeout. The final push from the CoL wasn’t quite enough, and although they outscored the visiting Eagles 19-8 in the quarter, Newcastle took home the win."

Performer of the game: Josh Norton

Sunday 11th December

Newcastle Eagles vs COLBC U14 Girls Gold

Result: 47-64 (W)

Coach Ben Allen: "It was a cold one in the frozen North but the Golden girls came out on fire, converting turnovers into easy buckets. Solid rotation of defence and great communication throughout all phases of play made this not only an enjoyable game to watch, but the best team performance so far this season! All players contributed against an Eagles team which refused to back down! Although there is always work to be done, Sunday was a very positive sign with only one more game to go before the Xmas break!!

Performer of the game: Niamh Martin

St Helen's Saints vs COLBA

Result: 81-68 (L)

Coach Matt Newby: "In many ways there were significant steps forward on the defensive end of the floor and although not a complete performance, there was 3 quarters of basketball that have been substantially better than a high percentage of the performances this season. We had significant outputs from the core of our perimeter and notably, Marcello Maffezzoli showed that he could contribute across the statistical categories. This was mirrored by Tayari Simpson, as we saw mature performances from Alex McCulloch and Seth Maloba. St Helen's proved too strong at the close, reaping the rewards for the change-up in their defensive alignments, but overall this was a very positive performance.

Performer of the game: Akil Simpson

COLBC Director Matt Newby shared his thoughts on the weekend:

"Again Leeds Beckett University was a hive of activity, with high-quality community sets in the morning and another full day of basketball in the Junior National League. The U14s girls continued to show improvements in all areas of the game, which is credit to their strong work ethic and the diligence of the coaching staff.

Our U14s boys teams both had significantly challenging games but are showing marked improvements in game play and continue to show increased understanding and awareness of offensive and defensive concept, which will stand them in. good stead for the future.

The marquee game of the home-slate was the match up between the U16 boys Gold and their North-east rivals Newcastle Eagles. This would end in a two point loss as Coach Messam's chargers tried to collect another win after impressive form last weekend. The improvements made in the first third of the season are notable given the high-calibre of the opposition in their league this season. This group are particularly exciting, as the majority have expressed interest in joining us at the City Of Leeds Basketball Academy next season.

The final game of the day in the green hall was a dog fight between our U16 Black and Tees Valley Mohawks, which would see Coach Browne's players chase down two double-digit deficits and come out with the win, in what was a hard-fought physical affair.

As we go into the final week before the Christmas break, we are genuinely pleased with the progress of our players and coaches, and excited about what the new year will bring."

That wraps up the eleventh edition of the Weekend Roundup - Join us next weekend for more action across the Junior National League programme.

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