Giants’ men slip up at Ipswich, but women make a flying start

Mansfield Giants v Loughborough Student Cardinals match cancelled at Oak Tree Leisure Centre.
Mansfield Giants v Loughborough Student Cardinals match cancelled at Oak Tree Leisure Centre.

Mansfield Giants Basketball Club’s men suffered their third defeat of their Patrons Cup campaign after going down 84-68 to Ipswich on Saturday.

After a long journey, the Giants started the game slowly as Ipswich raced ahead.

Coach Curtis Xavier called a time-out and make some changes which brought the Giants back into the game and the first quarter ended 22-20 to Ipswich.

Again the Giants had a slow start to the second quarter with Ipswich getting pumped with some excellent long range shooting.

Mansfield did claw their way back into the game, but went into the half with a nine point deficit to make up.

Two quick baskets from the Giants saw them close the gap further. But Ipswich’s big men continuously caused problems.

The Giants won the quarter 20-18, though Ipswich managed to go into the final period with a nine point lead at 65-56.

The Giants started playing with confidence and once again closed the gap only to see a lack of concentration allow Ipswich three offensive rebounds and put-backs to take the game away from them.

Mansfield top scorers: D. Richards 15, M. Woodhouse 15, S. Summersgill 14.

Giants’ women made a great start to the season.

On Saturday the scheduled game was forfeited by Doncaster on arrival to the venue due to an illegal court, handing Giants an automatic 20-0 win.

However, the team took to their home court on Sunday to beat local rivals Nottingham Wildcats 65-50 in front of a huge crowd .

Mansfield went 7-2 down early on as the young team came out of the blocks fast.

Coach Congreves called an early time-out to refocus the team, with Rebecca Temple taking control and allowing Giants to pile on the points and end the quarter 19-7 to the good.

It looked from there as though the more experienced Giants team were in full control of the game.

However, Wildcats dug deep and picked up the tempo to edge slowly back over the next two quarters, outscoring Giants in both to end the third 41-37 down.

The opposition managed to pull the game even closer to within one point, but Giants kept their cool, and some sharpshooting from Alison Bridge and inside duo Charlie Levitt and Krista Van Alten sent the team on a 8-0 scoring spree.

From there on, it fell to Katy Taylor to control the game from the point and continue to feed the big player,s using the Giants’ height advantage to close out the game.

Some great performances from juniors Ella Higginbotham, Heather Clarke and Chloe Gaynor saw them play a pivotal role in the win.

Mansfield top scorers: A. Bridge 23, K. Van Alten 17, C. Levitt 13.

Giants will now face Loughborough Student Riders II in the second round in November.

Giants’ men are back in action this Saturday at the Oak Tree Leisure Centre for a 6pm tip-off against Loughborough Student Riders in the second round of the National Cup.

The women are at home to Loughborough Student Riders II at 4pm.

Admission is only £3 for adults and £1.50 for U16s if you take a copy of this article to the game.

On Sunday the men travel to London Eastside Eagles.