IPSWICH BASKETBALL 83-67 LONDON BC MEDELYNAS
NBL Division II
Copleston Sports Centre
Luke Mascall-Wright had 27 points, Jake Eynon threatened a statistical triple-double for the second game in a row, and Ipswich Basketball took their fourth win in five games to continue a hot start to the 2019/20 NBL Division II season.
Coach Adam Robinson’s side have been associated with high-scoring, fast-paced contests so far this campaign, but Saturday’s win demonstrated the team’s ability to key in defensively and grind out a victory against physically superior opposition.
Visitors BC Medelynas came into the weekend tied with Ipswich at 3-1 in Division II, and the visitors’ imposing frontcourt trio of Edvinas Vaupsas, Tomas Kazlauskas and Algirdas Jaras posed challenges for the home side.
Ipswich countered with a high-intensity team defensive effort keyed by Ethan Price and Stephen Hemmings defensively, and were able to control the first quarter with a number of fast-break scores alongside some potent early shooting.
Mascall-Wright, Hemmings and Jacob Morgan combined for four first-quarter three-pointers as the hosts carved a healthy lead, going up by 17 at 26-9.
The visitors came alive in the second quarter, with Jaras and Paulauskas combining for 20 of Medelynas’ 25 points in a more even period. A pair of Ben Winter scores and seven points from Eynon kept Ipswich in front by double-digits and the hosts led 48-37 at the half.
The game became increasingly attritional in the second half – the two sides shared just eight points across the first four minutes – but Ipswich’s team defense held firm and 11 points from Price and Morgan rebuilt a 14-point lead which the hosts would retain for the rest of the quarter.
The final period saw the contest settled with around two minutes remaining and Ipswich holding a 16-point edge following a long jump shot by Mascall-Wright.
“Another positive result and one of our best performances of the season so far,” assessed Coach Robinson.
“We trained well this week after a very encouraging road trip, and I think we are starting to see our squad’s structure come together.
“If we keep playing with the intensity and collectiveness that we displayed today, I think we have a lot of potential.”