Written by Scott Leigh, Handsworth Grad 2006
In a battle of familiar foes, Seycove lines up against Collingwood for the first of many times in this 2017-2018 season.
Collingwood came out on their home court with a flawless set motion play off the tip-off that led to an easy layup. Some nifty point guard play from the Cavaliers Lochlun Collins pushed the lead to 6 points early in the game. As the teams have settled into this game, the defensive pressure of both teams has resulted in a number of turnovers and a low scoring start to the match. Back-to-back threes for Imraan Karmali off the bench has Collingwood up 12-5. The Seahawks have made an effort to switch the momentum before the end of 1st quarter with a late run. After the first, the Cavaliers are up 19-17.
The Karmali twins worked hard to keep the Cavaliers in this game with the long ball and strong defence in transition. Early on it appeared Collingwood had a deeper bench which they were working to get involved in the game, whereas the Seahawks are content to work their 7 man rotation - this may turn into a battle of endurance down the stretch. Douglas Musselman is looking to single-handedly match the Karmali twins 3 point tally as he drains his third of the game with 5 minutes to go in the second quarter. A fast-paced entertaining finish to the half ended with the Cavs hitting a buzzer beater floater to take the lead: 45-44.
This Friday night Double A match-up is as entertaining a game as you could ask for. The back and forth exchange of buckets continues into the second half as it seems like neither team can stretch the lead more than a few points. One thing is for sure - neither team is afraid of attempting the three ball.
Big man Denis Tuck on the Cavs took 3 years away from the game of basketball, but there is no rust in his game to this point. Seycove has experienced a healthy dose of Tuck crashing the boards, ripping down offensive rebounds and finishing tough inside. With that said, Seycove is staying well within striking distance as we headed into the fourth.
Chris Ross of Seycove, who laid down 50 points in a ‘No Regrets’ game 2 years ago as a Grade 10, was not ready to let the Cavaliers run away with this game quite yet. A number of strong finishes inside by Ross kept the Seahawks a little too close for comfort for the Collingwood supporters. A quick shift had Collingwood extending the lead to 8 points with 3 minutes to go. The Seahawks are going to need a late push and a number of clutch buckets to give themselves a chance of reaching the semi-finals. Musselman is keeping this game interesting, by hitting a three and tough layup late in the game to bring the Seahawks within 3 points with under a minute to go.
It looks like it is time for Tuck to put those rugby cleats away and get some use out of those Nike sneakers. Great all around performance by Tuck who led his team to a 73-70 win over the Seahawks.
The Cavaliers will face the Handsworth Royals in an all North Shore semi-final tomorrow morning at Handsworth.