Depleted Ipswich Basketball Club fall to first defeat of the season to Lancashire Spinners

Ipswich's Colin Dockrell stepped upl against Lancashire

Ipswich's Colin Dockrell stepped upl against Lancashire - Credit: Archant

EBL Division Two Ipswich 83 Lancashire Spinners 87 Lancashire Spinners took advantage of a depleted Ipswich team, handing the Suffolk side their first defeat of season.

Ipswich's Jacob Lloyd driving through contact to get to the basket against Lancashire

Ipswich's Jacob Lloyd driving through contact to get to the basket against Lancashire - Credit: Archant

But Ipswich, who were missing two key players – captain Tom Sadler and emerging young star Sam Newman – plus had key big man Leigh Greenan hobbled by an ankle injury didn’t go down without a fight.

The game was a cracker, with the Spinners leading for much of it but never able to shake their spirited opponents.

For Ipswich, the attack was led by Josh Johnson (16 points), Luke Mascall-Wright (18) and Aaron Moseley (18), all playing almost the entire game without a break. Jacob Lloyd – only cleared to play after concussion on the morning of the game – also stepped up massively, playing a key role in getting Ipswich into the lead late in the third quarter, although that lead was short lived.

Inside, Colin Dockrell, captain for the day, played extended minutes while Greenan, who was nowhere near his usually dominant self due to his injury, was still effective in a reduced role.

Ipswich head coach Nick Drane in the huddle

Ipswich head coach Nick Drane in the huddle - Credit: Archant

For the Spinners it was the usual sharp shooting double act of Steve Gayle and Josh Houghton that led the way, with former England player Steven Vaughan also having a good game.

Ipswich, usually a dominant rebounding team, got bettered on the boards for the first time this season. Without Sadler and with a half-fit Greenan, the Spinners beat Ipswich in the areas that are their usual strength.

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The game came down to the final minute. Ipswich had the ball with 40 seconds to play, down by one with a chance to take the lead.

But they failed to make a play and as a consequence Lancashire went to the foul line and converted the shots.

Ipswich again missed on their next possession and the Spinners made one from two at the line, eventually winning 87-83.

Head coach Nick Drane said: “We showed the depth of our team today and we also showed that even without key players we are a top team in this division.

“I’m not going to lose any sleep over that loss. Sam and Tom average about 30 points per game between then and a fit Leigh would had given us that usually physical advantage.

“Lancashire are a great team, well run club with an excellent floor general in Steve Gayle.

“I make no excuses – we didn’t lose that game because we we missing guys. We lost because we were out rebounded and we missed 19 free throws.”

- This week Ipswich aim to get back to winning ways at home against Loughborough Riders. The game tips at the earlier time of 2pm on Saturday.

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