Derby Trailblazers Academy vs Charnwood College

Derby hosted Charnwood in the EABL season opener and it was the Riders who returned home with a deserved victory.

The first quarter was a tight affair with both teams scoring on the break in a fast paced encounter. Charnwood showed strength in depth as 8 players got on the scoresheet in the opening period, while Derby’s Mutesamango and Brown both netted 6 points each as the quarter ended 18-19. The game was arguably won in the second quarter as the Riders took it 13-31 to open a big lead. Niall Harris had 10 points in the quarter, along with a couple of assists, as Derby struggled to contain the Charnwood offence. The home side headed into the half-time break down 31-50.

Derby battled hard in the third quarter, as Essel-Jaji hit a couple from downtown and Bowman found some rhythm with eight points in a row – including a nice fast break dunk. Derby reduced the deficit to 17 by the end of the third 55-72, but it proved to be the closest they would get. Riders controlled the final period to run out 76-101 winners.

Post-game, Coach Matt Shaw commented “I was pleased with the way our guys battled through out. Charnwood are always a tough match up and it was a good eye opener for some of our new guys as to level we have to target. We had 7 guys making their EABL debut today and I think we have a group that will seriously improve as the season moves on. There were plenty of positives for sure, but it’s always disappointing to come out on the losing side. We certainly need to do some work on the defensive end, you don’t win any EABL games giving up a ton.”

Derby Scorers:

Essel Jaji 15, Mutesamango 12, Bowman 10, C Brown 8, Matimba 7, James 7, Samuels 6, Dejnek-Vel-Denek 5, Pope 4, Francis 2

Charnwood Scorers:

Harris 24, Sanga 16, Kitenge 14, Nezri  14, Durand 13

You must be logged in to post a comment Login