Leith Honey Badgers vs Pleasance 47’s
‘If I thought they were coming by bus I’d send the bus fare’, Alex Salmond.
Friday 7th December saw The Leith Honey Badgers play their fifth match of the season as they squared up to the Pleasance 47s. Entering the match with a record of 3 wins and 1 defeat the Badgers were confident in their ability yet aware of history. Last season saw a couple of ill-tempered matches against the 47s with our very own Coach Holden rocking the boat as he questioned their sportsmanship in the book of face. Regardless, the book of records showed Leith were yet to beat the skilled Pleasance old boys and with 3 regulars out for the Badgers, a bystander may have foreseen history to repeat itself.
Following a rousing locker room speech and a desire to have no half time hair dryer treatment, Fraz, Mike, Scott, Farooq and G braced themselves for the tip. Pleasance got the nod and it was on, with both teams showing nice motion on offence but 47s the only of the two converting their early chances with some excellent jump shots that set the mark for their entire performance. 26 and 32 may not be youthful years in the NBA but in the LBA you’re a puppy dog, so when Scott and Mike were let off the leads mid quarter, their pace dogged the opposition as a dunk began the 8 Badger points they notched up- grrrrrreat. Regardless, Pleasance continued to shoot excellently and their purebred danger men Falconer and Muir connected for 9 to give them a 1 point lead at the end of the 1st.
After the break, the furious five went on with the message, play pure, play your own game and the rest will take care of itself- Basketball is the truth. Often easier said than done, but the Badgers stuck to moving the ball, striking when openings emerged and ultimately supporting one another. Sanchez helped keep the machine oiled, slick passing around the perimeter whilst Big Fraz, Holden and G motored in the paint to clear the road for the cutters to convert. But Pleasance done their thing too, nailing the well worked jumpers with superb technique. This was no brawl, both parties went out to play ball and so it continued as Badgers took the quarter by 2 and lead the game by 1 at half time.
Styles make fights and the 47s sharp shooting against the Badgers pass and move play led to a heavyweight 3rd quarter. Mike showed some iron dropping 10 whilst G. Muir of the 47’s coulda done with lending us his headband as we sweated watching his 8 nicely stroked points drop. Yet this was no individual duel, as the Badgers constant moving and passing created opportunities across the team and on another night there could have been an extra 10 points on the board with a little sharper execution. No worries though, as whilst the temperature got cooking some ice cold defence from the Badger big’s stopped the internal threats and the 47s mustered 2 less than the men from Leith.
Let us never forget, Leith said Aye. Aye we want to determine our own future, aye we will make our own choices and aye, I would rather do my own thing and live or die by it. Leith Honey Badgers took no notice of the other party and continued their own vision for a brighter future, if only they had some white papers to offer the opposition. For out of the grassroots emerged 2 new leaders, Farooq and Cobra Conner. As things went back and forward between the teams, Farooq sank 2 big shots on consecutive plays to maintain the slight badger lead. Then Cobra got a steal and assist for Mike, followed by a huge rebound off a gut busting full court run that led to a foul and free throws. The man from Midlothian was sure High flying as he converted the first of his shots to create distance between the Badgers and chasing 47s. Just like in weeks gone by, the Badgers remained composed and worked the ball to keep their lead ending the match up by 6, Leith Honey Badgers 45 – 39 Pleasance 47’s.
The three cheers for Pleasance were heartfelt as this was an honest game in which both parties went out to play honest basketball. On another night, it might have went 47’s way but it could also have been a bigger win margin for The Badgers as Leith missed a number of nice chances. For The Honey Badgers the result led to a unanimous YES as they left the court and headed to The Brass Monkey to settle for Peevo Max!
Break it down:
Q1: Leith Honey Badgers 8 – 9 Pleasnce 47’s
Q2: Leith Honey Badgers 9 – 7 Pleasance 47’s
Q3: Leith Honey Badgers 15 – 13 Pleasance 47’s
Q4: Leith Honey Badgers 13 – 10 Pleasance 47’s
Final Score: Leith Honey Badgers 45 – 39 Pleasance 47’s
Scorers: Mike 20, Scott 10, Fraz 10, Farooq 4, Andy ‘Cobra’ Conner 1