First win for basketball girls

YORK 1s LANDED their first win of the season, with an energetic display against a static Sheffield side. An organised and swift offense paired with a tenacious defensive game allowed the York girls to shut out the travelling opposition in front of a lively home crowd.

After a slow start to the game, Sheffield opened the scoring. It would be the only time in the game that the visitors would be in the lead as they were soon rebutted by three York goals scored in quick succession.

The first quarter remained a tight affair as York squeaked in at the break with an 18-17 lead. Captain Bea Lansbergen spearheaded the attack with her rapid runs deep into Sheffield territory. The defence had little response to the York team, who within minutes had opened up a six-point lead. While Sheffield were equally deft at advancing the ball up the court, their shooters were not of York’s quality and failed to convert a number of opportunities.

They were made to rue their missed chances: in the second quarter they scored just six points, as York went in at half time up at 28-23. The second half began with another Sheffield free-throw. The raucous crowd did their best to put the Sheffield shooter off and were sent into delirium when the rebounded shot was collected by Lansbergen who stormed across the court and netted first time to give York the first points of the second half.

Sheffield began to find their feet and managed to reduce the deficit to just three points. As a sense of urgency gripped the team (who were hoping not to fall to their third defeat in succession) they began to attack with earnest.

York struck back through Frankie Ashby, who emerged as a key player with scoring two points in quick succession. Moments later, she nearly made it three as she ghosted past her defender but just couldn’t quite convert.

The rest of the third quarter was characterised by York beginning to dominate the scoresheet. Deep into the quarter, a threepointer from Sheffield was nullified within seconds by a spectacular shot from Sophie Bennett which really sent the crowd rocking.

A goal was converted by the euphoric Rose Lagnado, just as the referee’s whistle was sounded, who wheeled away in delight having given York a 43- 34 lead at the end of the quarter. A free-scoring ten minutes wrapped up the match.

Passionate defending from Juliet Smith and Kayla Taylor-Schmidt kept the Sheffield team at bay, while three three-pointers from Bennet alone stretched York’s lead even further. Taylor-Schmidt scored the last points of the game for York, who may be accused of letting their guard down towards the final whistle.

Although in vain, Sheffield scored nine unanswered points in the closing minutes. York were outscored 18-19 in what was a frantic final quarter. The York squad will hope that they can grab their first away win of the season in their next fixture against Sunderland.

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