Basketball: Bognor get league campaign off to winning start

Bognor Pirates' Richard Lowe
Bognor Pirates' Richard Lowe

Bognor Pirates won their first home game of the new season at the Arena Sports Centre in front of a good enthusiastic crowd, beating Brighton Cougars 64-55 in the Sussex Men’s League.

Brighton Cougars have re entered the Sussex League after a year’s absence but brought with them some familiar faces from Brighton Runnin Rebels.

They had some new players - as did the Pirates.

Max Smith opened the scoring for Pirates converting his two free throws following a foul by Cougars. That was soon followed by some quick baskets from Rich Lowe, Andy Pleskys and Rob Stapely.

The Pirates defence was a challenge for the Cougars, who couldn’t find a way to the hoop until the seventh minute.

Cougars put on a press defence causing several turnovers and fouls from Pirates, closing Pirates’ lead to 18-12 at the end of the first period.

The second saw both teams struggling to score and it was 26-23 in Pirates’ favour at halfway.

Cougars reintroduced their press in the third period but with too much dribbling from the home side the turnovers were back.

Coach Adam Robbins put on some of the more experienced players and Pirates were able to increase their scoring - finishing the period with an eight-point lead.

Pirates dominated the boards at both ends with great rebounds and put-backs from Lowe, Matt Wakeling and Luke Attfield, using their height advantage over the Brighton side.

But the title of MVP went to Stapely, who was always fighting for the loose balls.

PIRATES: Lowe 16, Stapely 9, Attfield 8, Pleskys 6, Jackson 6, Wakeling 6,Sharp 4, Smith 4,Knight 3, Morgan 2, Morling.