Ipswich Men mauled by the Bears
NBL Division Two
Sussex Bears 76
Ipswich were unable to follow up last weekend’s victory with a third in four games, as a disappointing offensive performance prevented them launching another comeback at Sussex Bears on Saturday, writes Rob Schatten.
The hosts led from mid-way through the first quarter and never looked back after a second frame in which Cordaris Townes, the Division II leading scorer, had ten of his game-high 25 points.
The visitors had started well, with Rabi Rai and Jed Robinson combining for three three-pointers in the first quarter, and Ipswich trailed by a single point after one period.
Townes, a lethal weapon in the open court, registered several high-flying dunks in the second quarter and began to give the hosts some momentum, supported by scores from Joe Carter as Ipswich worked through Colin Dockrell at the other end.
Ipswich had planned for Townes and the Bears, and limited the extremely athletic American to seven points after half time, cutting the gap to just eight points at 53-45 after three quarters.
But a woeful shooting performance in the final quarter, in which Ipswich registered just six points, put paid to attempts of a fight-back.
“That [shooting slump] will happen to a team like ours who take a lot of jump shots,” conceded head coach John Ellis.
“We played defense pretty much to the plan, and I’m happy that we were able to pretty much convert the scouting report as designed.
“However, our offense was… well, offensive, today. It will happen to a shooting team every now and again. I felt we were chasing makes and kept banging our heads against a brick wall a little in the fourth quarter.”
Ipswich finished the game just 4-31 from three-point range, and also struggled at the free-throw line.
Tomas Sediukis supported Townes with 20 points. Robinson, Dockrell and Ethan Price registered 10 points apiece for Ipswich.
The Suffolk side have a weekend off next weekend, before they face a double-header on the 26th and 27th of January. East London All-Stars are at Copleston on Saturday 26th before Ellis and his team face the London Pioneers in the Patrons’ Cup semi-final on Sunday 27th.