Charnwood College vs Itchen College

Charnwood College Riders took a solid 100-84 victory over Itchen College to book a Final Four match up with Barking Abbey on Wednesday.

Sesan Russell led six players into double figures for Charnwood with 20 points, 9 rebounds and 4 assists, as Marcus Quirk and Joe Bielak added 16 each.

Itchen were led by a huge 28 point, 14 rebound double-double from Ashley Briggs, with Matt Hughes adding 21 and 8, and Aaron Berida 16 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 steals.

Charnwood and Itchen were evenly matched in the first quarter, with Itchen’s Ashley Briggs attacking the rim for three dunks but Charnwood led 23-17 after one.

With it being a four point game with three minutes left in the half, Briggs was forced to the bench in foul trouble and Charnwood capitalised getting out on the break converting some easy points in transition and Sesan Russell scoring back to back threes, going into the break with a convincing 14-point lead.

Charnwood came out on fire after the break hitting three consecutive three pointers, with two of them coming from Marcus Quirk. During the quarter, Joe Bielak scored 6 points straight, to separate them by as much as 30 points during the quarter.

Despite a solid effort from Itchen at the end of the third and through the fourth quarter, three away games in three days took it’s toll on the vistors, as they ran out of steam.

Charnwood Head Coach Will Maynard commented: “We played well for the most part, once we built a comfortable lead we took our foot off the glass a little bit, but we were able stay in control comfortably throughout the whole second half.

“Im proud of the way we played and we had contributions from all 12 players who suited up. We still have a long way to and need to continue to improve each day. We will be ready for whoever we face in the Semi-Finals.”

Itchen Head Coach Matt Guymon added:

“Its been a tough week for our guys and with the quarter final only being confirmed on Wednesday, this game didn’t have the feel of a normal playoff matchup with both teams struggling with fatigue/injuries & lack of prep time.

“I felt we did a great job for the majority of the first half, but when Ash Briggs & Aaron Berida got in foul trouble with 3 minutes to go in the half. The game went from 4 points to 16 going into the break.

“Unfortunately we didn’t have the legs in the second half to climb out of a hole, but credit to our guys who competed until the final buzzer and were able to trim the lead down the stretch.”

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