The BOGNOR Pirates scraped through 68-65 in the Sussex Men’s Cup at Holbrook Huskies despite travelling to face Holbrook with a much-depleted squad of just six players as illness, injuries and work commitments took their toll.
Stu Hardyman grabbed early points as did Luke Attfield to put the Pirates into an early lead, but the Huskies moved the ball well offensively, pulling the Pirates’ zone defence out of shape.
The Huskies also shot well and the first quarter ended with the Pirates leading 17-15.
The second quarter saw both teams attacking the basket. All the Pirates contributed with Rich Lowe and Attfield grabbing baskets and drawing fouls.
The Huskies’ shooting had not dipped as they continued to shoot well and they took a 39-36 lead at the halfway mark.
In the third quarter, Pirates coach Kev Robbins changed the defence to man-to-man, and they held the Huskies to just four points in this quarter.
At the other the Pirates became tired, missing shots. But they regained their earlier lead with some good offensive work from Lowe and Kev Wilson to take a 49-43 lead.
In the final quarter, tiredness began to set in as the Pirates fell into foul trouble and the Huskies regained their earlier shooting form including some big threes.
It was Wilson’s quarter offensively as he drove into the Huskies defence grabbing fouls and baskets to keep the Pirates ahead.
With seconds left, Stu Hardyman turned the ball over allowing the Huskies an open lay-up which tied the game at 60-60 and meant overtime was needed.
The lead changed several times and it was tense. With little time left the Pirates had a one-point lead but the Huskies had the ball. Intense defence from the Pirates saw the Huskies miss their shot and the Pirates dived on the rebound.
Hardyman was fouled and was sent to the free-throw line from where he scored both free-throws to give the Pirates a hard-fought three-point win.
PIRATES: K Wilson 18, R Lowe 17, L Attfield 16, S Hardyman 9, D Morgan 6, J Parker 2.