Swaine's Spartans Hammer Wasps
For the first time this season in V-Cars.co.uk division 4, Hull Wasps were on the end of a good old-fashioned hammering as they succumbed 92-71 to a talented Stockport Spartans side.
Coached by ex-England international Jason Swaine, the Spartans looked a well-drilled unit on both ends of the court as they restricted the Wasps to difficult opportunities at the offensive end whilst scoring with ease against the Wasps' defense.
In last week's victory over Newcastle Knights, the Wasps' defense had looked in exceptional form, restricting their opponents to a season low of 43 points. This weekend however they looked a different team as Spartans poured in a massive 34 points, behind fine shooting from Swaine and solid work inside from 6'3" forward Stu Griffiths. Once again a slow start put the Wasps firmly on the back foot as they trailed 34-11 at the end of the first quarter.
Coach Fawcett changed his defensive strategy and Wasps were able to slow the Spartans momentum in the second quarter as well as finding a little more offensive cohesion, but despite this they still trailed 58-27 at half time and were facing their heaviest ever defeat.
Quarter 3 saw the Wasps play a solid 10 minutes of basketball executing well on offense and restricting Spartans to contested shots. The trio of Wilson, Brutnell and Mark Baker proved effective in the paint as they began to dominate against the Spartans' smaller line up to help Wasps outscore Spartans 25-15.
Despite the Wasps still putting in great defensive work in the final 10 minutes, Spartans once again increased their defensive intensity to match them, and consequently Coach Fawcett's side were unable to further close the gap as they were convincingly beaten 92-71. Jason Swaine led all scorers with 34 points, rolling back the years with an excellent display of shooting and was brilliantly backed up by Stu Griffiths' season high of 16 points.
Matt Brutnell once again led Wasps scorers with 14 points whilst Matt Wilson continued his development in his first season at National League level with 10 points. Mark Baker was able to make the most of the extended minutes he received from Coach Fawcett by adding 8 points in his most effective performance so far this season.
Despite the defeat, the Wasps still hold onto 4th place in V-Cars.co.uk division 4, and with the next three matches all against the bottom 3 sides, Wasps will be confident that they can consolidate that position and finish the season with a winning record.
Coach Fawcett was disappointed, but remains determined to improve. He commented after the game, "For the first time this season we got beat by a massive margin. But there is no point me or the team dwelling on the result. We have to work to get better. There was a few good performances from the lads. Mark Baker made the most of his chance and I thought Flo [Gammino] had a good first run out for a new team."
Next match is against Liverpool on Saturday 16th February 2013, tip off 5.30pm at Walton Sports Centre.