WHEELCHAIR BASKETBALL: WARWICKSHIRE Bears coach Tom Masterson has spoken of his pride after watching his side beat local rivals Birmingham Blackcats 67-37 to cement their place at the top of the National League First Division South.
An impressive performance saw the Bears record their first ever victory over Birmingham and Sunday’s game was of significant importance for Adrian Taber, who put in an impressive performance against his former club.
From the tip off the Bears put pressure on the Blackcats while trying to restrict the main threat of Rob Smith to limited shots.
With both Jacob Robinson and Ben Haigh playing an impressive attacking game, the Bears were able to build an early lead and finished the opening quarter 23-12 in front.
A strong Bears defence limited the Blackcats to just one basket in the second quarter while the home side edged into a 20-point lead by the midway point.
The third quarter saw the Bears really turn the screw, with a tough defence and adding more scores onto their total to take a healthy 36-point lead into the last quarter.
Coach Masterson used the final quarter to give all of his bench players a run out and despite their experienced opponents pulling back points, the Bears finished the match with a comfortable 20-point lead.
“Really proud of the team,” said Masterson. “The game was more tighter than the score reflects, and to win against such a good experienced team like Blackcats is a testament to how well the team is playing now.
“I have to give a special mention to Adrian Taber, who was playing against his old team mates and he put in a fantastic performance.”
Elsewhere, the Bears’ second team maintained their winning streak with a 56-21 win at home to Hampshire Harriers in the Third Division South & West.
The hosts were in complete control from start to finish and used Sunday’s fixture to give valuable court time to the whole squad.
Another win keeps the Bears top of the pile and on course for promotions. Masterson added: “That win takes the second team one step closer to the play-offs.
“It was good to see all the team get on the score sheet and get some valuable court time.”
The Bears are next in action on February 25 when the women’s team play their final game of the season in Nottingham.
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