Leicester Riders Junior Stars were in action once again this weekend with all three teams competing in their respective leagues.
It has been a positive start across the board for the Riders Foundation JNBL Programme. So far the U12s have started their first competitive season undefeated, whilst the U14s and U16s have battled their way through tough fixtures as they begin to find their ways in a new age category.
Another challenging round of fixtures arose for the young riders to test themselves against and its was Coach Steve Farrington’s U12s that started the weekend off. Their contestants were Coventry Tornadoes Blue in the Youth Basketball League U13s North Competition. After a nervous start in the first quarter the young riders rallied back with some impressive defensive play led by the game MVP Mookie Routledge. Big inside plays from William Harrison, and scoring runs from Hugo Gammon and Bryce Woodley gave the team a strong lead. A whole team effort forced the game in the Young Riders favour as they rode out to a 25-43 victory.
Focus then turned to the Basketball England U16 East Midlands competition as the Riders took on local rivals Rutland Thunder, led by former player John Smith. Rutland started the game positively but began to show their inexperience as the Riders led 52-18 at the half. A great team performance inspire the defensive intensity and some sharp shooting from Shae Parnell and Jacob Farrington, pushed ‘The Reds’ further ahead 74-26 at the end of the 3rd. Dane Carr has impressed early on in the season and notched 21 points alongside Fisnik Nuhiji’s 30pt frenzy. Coach Tahir, selected Fisnik as the MVP for his performances on both ends of the floor.
After two great wins, the U14 Riders looked favourites to win their game against Midlands rivals Notts Nova. The U14’s went into the game undefeated but fell to a courageous defeat against a strong and well organised opponents. After a slow start the Riders gave themselves a mountain to climb and came as close as 8pts before falling to a 55-43 defeat.
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