Sony Centre Fury 66 v 88 St Mirren
Junior Men National League Division 1
St Mirren West College Scotland Junior Men made the journey to Falkirk for their final game of 2016 against 3rd place Falkirk Fury. Both teams started hesitantly, missing their first few chances. Eden Duff was the first to score for Saints with a lay-up. For the remainder of the quarter St.Mirren controlled the game with strong defence, reducing Fury to low-percentage shots from around the 3-point line. Saints won Q1 7-20.
Falkirk have been unbeaten at home this season and their followers create a passionate atmosphere. In Q2, the home side reacted to the intensity of the crowd and were scoring highly with drives to the basket. Saints players were adjusting to their man-on-man defence formation and were in early foul trouble in the quarter. Stand-in coach Chris Cleary made several personnel changes, partly due to the foul count. The fresher lags were of benefit nearer the end of the period. Among them Jason Carr, who was starting to impose himself on the match, converting a high ratio of his chances. Saints edged Q2 22-24.
Saints U18s have not conceded over 20 points in a quarter since September so they knew that their defence had to improve. However, credit must go to a talented Falkirk side who were contributing to an entertaining contest. When St.Mirren’s offence were in full flow, they were playing their best passing basketball of the season. Callan Low was at the heart of some of the best moves and helped his team take Q3 16-18.
With a 17-point margin at the start of Q4, Fury had to take more chances if they wanted the win. This left gaps in their defence and the Paisley side capitalised with numerous fast breaks. Carr got himself into great positions and didn’t miss the hoop. Saints won their 4th quarter of the game 21-26 to give them a 66-88 overall victory. The win effectively ends Fury’s title hopes but they will be hoping for revenge when the teams face each other next in the Scottish Cup final in February.
Saints top scorers were Callan Low with 27 points and Jason Carr on 15 points.
St Mirren WCS Junior Men’s next fixture is a home game against Grampian Flyers at the Lagoon Leisure Centre on Saturday 14th January 2017, Tip-off 2.50pm.