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2023/24 National League Weekly Roundup - Week 7

The weekly roundup is back! Check out the the scores and coaches' thoughts from week 7 of the National league season.

Week 7 saw a record-breaking weekend as COLBC teams competing in more games than any weekend in the club's history.


Let's see how it all went down as we roundup week 7 of the 2023/24 National League season.


Saturday 11th November 2023


COLBA vs Calderdale Explorers

Men's Division 3 North

Result: 87-82 (W)

Player of the game: Adam Dickens

Coach Matt Newby: "In an important game for so many reasons, our first win in Division 3 showed incremental improvement from the first four games, and a stronger connectivity between our cohorts from COLBA and Leeds Beckett University. There was notable contributions from Jack Hill in scoring, Will Davis on the glass and a well-rounded performance from player of the game Adam Dickens in a super-efficient 17 minutes. There were significant plays made in the closing quarter by Dan Bevan and Morgan Bamford, with COLBA lead guard Marcello Maffezzoli capitalising on the extra possessions in the close. We would like to thank our supporters for a strong turnout in our second home fixture. Our players really benefited from the fan engagement which definitely had a key impact on the performance."


COLBA vs East Durham Lions

U18 Men North I Conference

Result: 96-48 (W)

Player of the game: AKil Simpson

Coach Matt Newby: "Another strong outing in the conference would see balanced minutes across the piece and Akil Simpson showed increased consistency from the field, coupled with some higher-order decision making. There was other impactful performances from lead guard Max Stead and Josh Norton returned to form with another double-double. The Lions showed strong resilience throughout and made two impactful runs which tested our reserve, however, once we found our rhythm, we were able to close the game out."


COLBC U16 Girls Gold vs Encon Derbyshire Arrows

U16 Girls North Conference

Result: 46-54 (L)

Player of the game: Victory Uzomah

Coach Katie Lamond: "It was a fast paced game for the U16s Gold, with a tough challenge, not only to try and keep up with pace of the game, but also against a team with strong offensive capabilities. The teams recovery defense, especially at the beginning of the game was a real strong point and it was clear to see the girls had a real desire to slow the ball down and protect the basket. The girls were aware of the level of difficulty, and were ready and prepared to be strong in their transition defence.

Offensively, the girls had some really key moments where they moved the ball and found good driving opportunities. In the moments where we lacked offensive movement, we provided our opposition with control, and others where we we all had the same desire to move, cut to the basket, along with wanting to push the ball up the floor. Although a little inconsistent, and not our strongest performance, it should be noted that despite the difficulty and pressure, the girls battled all the way through, while making a real effort to keep each other positive and competitive. Never giving up, trying to lessen the scoreline all the way to the final buzzer, I 100% believe it will be a different result next time!"


COLBC U16 Girls Black vs Lancashire Spinners

U16 Girls North Conference

Result: 24-85 (L)

Player of the game: Reicela Freimute

Coach Katie Lamond: "It was quite the challenge against an experienced Spinners side! Our first quarter came with a struggle, learning how to handle a full court press and quick breaks. It was hard for the girls to settle and find their rhythm. However, the girls eventually came into their own, getting free a little more, providing passing opportunities to deal with the pressure. We found some great breaks in transition! Pushing the ball strongly up the court.

It was clear to see the girls trying to apply practice to their gameplay, offering more offensive movements and actions to score. The girls were often trying to get to the correct position and spaces, just unfortunately not always able to give the desired pass. However, it was a big positive to see the actions being attempted, showing more offensive understanding. Some brilliant drive and dish opportunities led to excellent recognition when attracting defenders to pass out to the corner/open player. Despite the tough score, it's clear to see the team improving every week, becoming more of a unit each time they play.


Manchester Giants vs COLBC U16 Boys Gold

U16 Boys North Premier

Result: 28-88

Player of the game: Ivas Ausekar

Coach Sam Messam: "Double header for the U16s Gold this weekend. Saturday saw the reduced squad travel east to Manchester and the host Giants were just that, long, athletic, and big across all five spots. We had moments but were shut out by an impressive Manchester Giants team. I look forward to taking the learning from this game and implementing in practice this week."


COLBC U16 Boys Black vs East Durham Lions

U16 Boys North I Conference

Result: 65-76 (L)

Player of the game: Briel Lipo

Coach Jake Shuttlewood: "To start the game we were playing very well against the Lions 2-3 zone which forced us to hit shots from the outside which is exact what Omar Nawrami and Alfie Young did! We kept composed and fought right throughout the game with hard fought defensive plays, quick transition baskets and even which saw us gain a marginal lead, unfortunately a lapse in concentration allowed East Durham to hit a three to tie the game which forced us to overtime. We were caught in some foul-trouble earlier on which hurt us in the long run and led to multiple scores from the Lions bigger physical players and allowed them to close out the match. A game to remember for a lot of the team which symbolises how far as collective we have come since the start of the season.”


COLBC U16 Boys White vs Spen Valley Vipers

U16 Boys North I Conference

Result: 51-58 (L)

Player of the game: Hannes Au

Coach Jake Shuttlewood: "A game which saw a massive improvement from the last in every way. We looked great in the first quarter with some early strong drives and good one-two play with some sharp cuts to the basket to covert some quick plays. The quarters kept rolling with an intense matchup between the two sides which faired extremely close throughout. With some quick thinking, the boys rallied to push for the win with a good run but unfortunately the Vipers closed the game out with some clutch free-throws to shut us away. Again, a steady improvement of our decision-making ability which will help us achieve more in the future!”


Leicester Riders vs COLBC U14 Boys Gold

U14 Boys North Premier

Result: 85-36 (L)

Player of the game: Tyrese Richards

Coach Ryan Weir: "This week we travelled to Leicester to face the Riders. With a distinct disadvantage in height between the two squads, defensive rebounding was a priority. Despite this difference the boys worked extremely hard as a unit to scrap and fight for every rebound, limiting Leicesters second chance opportunities. Additionally, an early season focus to limit our oppositions transition was on full display, with each player committing to protecting the middle third. Some very impressive performances from some first year players with Sonny Jordan coming off the bench and showcasing his feel for the game with some excellent decision making. Toby Dennis in his first year in the Premier, showcased his expanding skill set, being an offensive threat all game, whilst showing his toughness with some gritty defence. The game was highlighted by a standout performance by Tyrese Richards, who put his rapidly expanding basketball IQ with some great offensive plays and excellent defensive rotations and anticipation. Fighting with bigs all afternoon long and grabbing double digit rebounds. The boys look set to push on and continue to improve on what has been a promising start to the season for the young side."


COLBC U14 Boys White vs

U14 Boys North I Conference

Result: 36-77 (L)

Player of the game: Liam Brostoff-Jordan

Coach Olly Kerwin-Clegg: "Another positive outing where the team’s improvements were evident. Whilst we struggled to get into our offence early, we had our most positive defence start to a game this season limiting Tees valley to under 20 points in the first quarter.

This defence would continue through thought the first half led by enterprising performances by Noah Jones and Liam Brostoff-Jordan and we held a very competitive second period with more pace in transition. Whilst a strong Tees Valley team used their physical advantage all game to extend their lead, the U14 Whites show a more developed understanding of the offence and are keen to be more aggressive when attacking the basket."


Teesside Lions vs COLBC U12 Boys Gold

U12 Boys Regional League

Result: 61-44 (L)

Player of the game: Matthew Swift

Coach Dave Sailsbury: "The boys got off to a slow start in this one, as the game opened with a 14-2 run from Teeside. In the opening period, the Gold team weren't able to come up with rebounds and loose balls and settled for mid range shots instead of getting to the rim. Following a timeout, we played with more of an edge, a heap of hustle and better spacing. This fight brought the game back to within 6 points. Our guards created opportunities off the dribble and with good on ball defence. In the second quarter Barnaby Routledge did a good job of denying Teeside's best player the ball. In the third, Teeside's main man got going again and despite our boys attacking the paint and getting opportunities close to the basket we couldn't convert which enabled Lions to pull away again. Desperate to stay in the game and an eagerness to make a contribution led to some over-dribbling and turnovers. Despite those turnovers we did create plenty of good looks at the basket which could have made this a very close game if converted. After what was their second competitive game of the season there were positives and plenty to work on over the next week before Gold face LDM away."


Teesside Lions vs COLBC U12 Boys Black

U12 Boys Regional League

Result: 55-26 (L)

Player of the game: Oliver Purdon-Owen

Coach Dave Sailsbury: "Our black group had an excellent start to the game, with terrific on ball and team defence forcing tough shots. 12 had poured in the points against our older group but with Theo Nije forcing him left and teammates in good help position the Black team were able to contest shots and force some misses and tough makes. Our boys moved the ball well at times, playing together as a team. Unfortunately,we struggled to convert our attempts which meant that despite a good performance we found ourselves trailing. In the second and third quarters, good spacing and shotmaking from Teeside stretched out our defence, creating gaps that allowed them to get to the basket. In the final quarter, Oliver Purdon-Owen caught fire with 8 points, sparking a run from our team in a quarter in which we won 20-18 with multiple players putting up points - ending the game on a positive note."


Sunday 12th November 2023


Doncaster Eagles vs COLBA II

U18 Men North I Conference

Result: 55-68 (W)

Player of the game: Jack Westgarth-Graham

Coach Sam Messam: "We were back in the road Sunday morning for an 11am tip against Doncaster Eagles. Just eight players made the journey south in a bid to pick up a much needed boost to their record. The starters came out of the gate hot and demonstrated an impressive first five minutes that grounded the Eagles and forced them into an early timeout. The game was a back and forth affair before the offensive prowess of Callum Conroy and the lockdown defence of Darchel Green broke the game wide open and secured a 68-55 victory.


Spen Valley Vipers vs COLBC U18 Men

U18 Men North I Conference

Result: 78-48 (W)

Player of the game: Laurence Bowler

Coach Ryan Weir: Sundays' matchup saw the U18s travel across town to play newcomers Spen Valley Vipers. With a few key players missing this provided the opportunity for players to step up, with the U18s answering the call. With a distinct focus on developing our defensive intensity and transition play, the U18s raced out to an early lead. This lead only grew through the game with some excellent transition lay and tough defensive showings. First year U18s, Matthew Firth and Toby Wilkins, were very impressive in their decision making and defensive performances today. Jools Barton played a pivotal role inside as he cleared up the glass for COLBC, in one of his most impressive performances to date. Standout performer today was Lawrence Bowler, who put his full basketball IQ and skill set on show today. With a near triple double, Bowler showcased some tough defensive play, soft touch around the basketball, and great feel for the game with some excellent passes.


Lancashire Spinners vs COLBC U18 Women

U18 Women North Conference

Result: 37-46 (W)

Player of the game: Abigail Stewart

Coach Katie Lamond: "What a brilliant start to the U18s 2023/24 season! Kick-starting our season with not only a win, but also putting a stop to Lancashire Spinners unbeaten run. Fantastic defensive performance today and the girls put in an incredible shift both in the front and half court. Exceptional desire to recover and win back the ball. The on court communication was consistent throughout all quarters of the game and there was not a single moment where help defence wasn't present.

The U18s showed brilliance in their offensive attitudes, with positive screen and roll actions, drive and dish options, along with our spacing and ball movement to open up the opposition defence and drive strong to the basket. We were just unfortunate to not able to convert every time, however amazing demonstration of our offensive vision and capabilities.

A few moments where we were caught of guard by outside shots , rushed decisions, along with a few quick transition baskets for Spinners. Though I am impressed with the teams ability within the last quarter to reestablish our control and composure to take the win. The U18s women setting the standard for the rest of the season."


Team QE vs COLBC U16 Boys Black

U16 Boys North I Conference

Result: 86-38 (L)

Player of the game: Freddy Lutu

Coach Jake Shuttlewood: "COLBC U16s Black second game of the weekend was a tough game which faced another Yorkshire opponent in Team QE. The game started slow against a new type of defence which some of the boys had not faced before but quickly adapted and developed throughout the game against QE’s 1-2-2 press. We had moments which were good on both ends of the floor but struggled to convert lots of shots which kept the lead in QE’s favour. We learnt a lot from the opponent today which will help us in future games”


Barrow Thorns vs COLBC U14 Girls

U14 Girls Conference

Result: 66-59 (L)

Player of the game: Natasha Kumaraswamy

Coach Matt Newby: "In a hard-fought match up against the Thorns, our girls showed a great deal of resilience, as a less experienced side took to the floor this weekend. Natasha Kumaraswamy and Jess Woodward provided exemplary leadership and a hard-nosed attitude to the game. Unfortunately, this resulted in foul trouble early, but the girls maintained strong focus and we would see developing players step up, such as Amber Bradley-Smith and Martha Kennerley, who throughout the game, improved in several areas, notably individual defence and rebounding. With foul trouble impacting the team laid in the young hands of Georgia Allen, who did incredibly well under the circumstances, consistently playing aggressively at both ends of the floor. Barrow showed great resolve, rebounding the ball well and second-chance opportunities would become the difference in the game."


LDM vs COLBC U14 Boys Black

U14 Girls Conference

Result: 78-33 (L)

Player of the game: Fraser Cummings

Coach Alex McCulloch: A tough loss today against a very physical LDM side. We started off the game with some bad news as Yakub Musa rolled his ankle in warmups causing him to miss the game. However, the team still started the game very well as we got numerous steals on their drives. This defensive effort, lead by Fraser Cummings and Kobe Wilkinson, resulted in low scoring by LDM during the first 5 minutes. The second unit then came in and gave just as good of an effort as Zain Ahmed and Oscar Mason gave us some terrific help side and rebounding to keep their interiors quiet. Offensively we had some very smart play both in transition and in the half court, led by Charlie Woodward to get some open looks at the rim. However, we struggled to convert on these as we missed out on 5 wide open missed layup which made the 18:6 split look far worse then should’ve. When we went into the 2nd the physical prospects of LDM started to prevail as they worked it into the post and got many offensive rebounds that they converted on well. This continued in the third but the second injury of the day another one of our bigger players Oscar Mason really dampened the team spirits which led to lots of turnovers in the third. A bright spot in this quarter was the offence of Archie Locke and Alex Newhouse who did well to penertrate inside and create for the team, as we went into the 4th the team switched their attitudes well and fought hard led again by the efforts of Charlie Woodward and Fraser Cummings to put on stellar performance which led to us winning the quarter. All in all the game was a mixed bag but there are plenty of positives we can look to continue going forward."


Rounding off the seventh weekend of the National League season, COLBC Director Matt Newby was feeling uplifted:


"Witnessing the expansion and growth of the club, the continued support and advocacy of the parents, guardians, which was highlighted in the Division 3 game, proves that we are striving for the right things and moving in the right direction. The coaching staff continue to maintain high-standards of teaching and delivery, which is evident in the improvements of individuals and teams throughout the programme. As we enter the winter months, we hope to see increased gains across the piece. Thank you so much for support - It means a great deal to everyone at the club."


The roundup will return next week after a 10 game slate on week 8 of the National League season.

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