Mansfield Giants ended their winning streak with their biggest defeat of the season after they were beaten 92-56 by league leaders Liverpool.
The defeat was a massive blow to the club’s hopes of making the end of season play-offs leaving them needing to win the rest of their remaining fixtures to keep the dream alive.
The defeat also left coach Dan Richard disappointed at his side’s lack of defensive intensity.
“It’s hard to really take any positives from our performance,” said Richards. “Liverpool are an excellent team that I expect to go onto take the title.
“We simply got outclassed in every department and didn’t rise to the challenge. We certainly missed the scoring power of Mike Buffalo, but have to figure out how to make up and extra 25-30 points a game.
“What I cant accept is the lack of defensive effort we displayed in this game.
“We have eight games remaining and believe we now have to go on to win all eight to stand any chance of making playoffs.
“I’m more that confident we will do it, but we have to approach the games a lot different to this one.
“We have only played one game in the last six weeks and we looked very sluggish, but games will soon be coming thick and fast, and important we start to peak at the right time leading into the post season.’
The Giants had made a solid start to the game, but Liverpool soon took advantage of their size with some easy baskets inside.
The game went back and forth with both teams making some sloppy plays, but it was Liverpool that gained a 28-23 advantaged after the first period.
Liverpool started to dominate the game, holding the Giants to just seven points in the second quarter.
Some excellent ball movement from Liverpool continued to create some easy scoring opportunities, as the Giants struggled to maintain any real defensive intensity.
The Giants once again made a solid start in the second half, but the momentum didn’t last long as Liverpool continued to pile on the misery to open up a 33 point lead going into the final period.
For the first time in the game, the Giants started to up their defensive intensity, but the game was already over as Liverpool cruised to a 36 point win.
Top scorers: C M Hudson 21, G Collins, B Plummer 12
This Saturday’s game versus Derby Trailblazers has been postponed due to the memorial game of Derby Legend Clarence Wiggins who sadly passed away over the Christmas period.