Following a year full of sporting highlights, online editor Nancy Frostick picks her top ten for 2016Written by Nancy Frostick on 8th December 2016
Brilliant Birmingham get better of Bedford
On Wednesday, Birmingham women’s basketball firsts took on the University of Bedford firsts at the Munrow Sports Hall
The game was the fourth so far for both teams in the Midlands 1A Division. The home team were looking to build on their consecutive wins against Lincoln and Leicester. The game ended in a thumping win for Birmingham, who thrashed their opponents 86-27, sending the home crowd wild. The first half saw Bedford take an early 5-1 lead, before Birmingham took control of the game. Brum soon led 16-11 and closed the quarter at 18-12. The hosts' Anne Martin played well in the first quarter, scoring four points, as well as Eleanor Minter, who also netted four. Bedford’s captain Emily Kinghorn impressed, scoring all but two of her side’s points.
The second quarter saw Birmingham push on, looking to cement their advantage. The home team steadily pushed on throughout the half to widen their advantage from the first quarter. They certainly achieved this, adding 21 more points to their total thanks to impressive displays from Ellice Beale and Maeve Higham, who scored five and four points for their teams respectively. Karen Chui, Minter and Amy Wills provided good assists for Birmingham and for the opponents, Katie Slade did well to get three defensive rebounds .The second quarter ended with Birmingham firmly ahead at 35-21. The third quarter saw the hosts really start to put their foot on the gas and got up to 56-27 by the end of the period. In this quarter, Beale helped her team by scoring six more goals, as well as Martin who claimed two assists. The best individual moment in this quarter came from Bedford’s Ruby Ditende with an impressive run and slam dunk.
Bedford noticeably dropped off in the fourth quarter. The visitors failed to add any more points, with Birmingham adding 30 well earned goals, to run out 86-27 winners. Bedford fouled more in this half, giving Birmingham several penalties that they took full advantage of to increase their score. The home team’s Matilde Bonhomme impressed in this half, scoring ten goals and helping Birmingham push on and show what they were capable of. Bedford’s Kinghorn tried hard to rally her side and was arguably their best player on the day. At the end of the game, the Bedford team were clearly disappointed and knew that they had underperformed. Kat Barmby reiterated this, ‘it was sad that our coach couldn’t join us, that really hampered our game. However I feel that we did well under the circumstances and we'll improve’. Bedford’s Ruby Ditende agreed, ‘we were missing many of our best players, so that was a big factor in our underperforming.’
Written by Tom Williamson