Super Tom Tom Directs Big Derby Win For Lions!
By Tom Jameson
Monday 26 Sep 2011 15:25:00
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In front of a big crowd, a strong team was fielded by Mohawks to provide Lions with a tough test in the National Shield Competition. Former BBL player Dijon Fisher and experienced division one players Alex Moore, James Burton and Tyrone Thomas plus seasoned national league players Damian Warriner and Lee Woolams would provide the core of Mohawks but the going would not be easy as the TADEA Lions pounced into an early 9-0 lead. The young and impressive Patrick O’Connor, who was approached by Mohawks during the Summer, fired a long range effort to instigate Lions run. Three straight baskets from Italian Papis Samb would finish the run before Lee Woolams finally broke the spell in the fifth minute. Alex Moore’s input was then felt in the sixth minute as he hit 7pts to push Mohawks into the lead 10-11. 


Middlesbrough star; Tom Robinson would step up for Lions with a strong drive followed by an ‘And 1’ play with a successful bonus shot to award Lions the edge at the end of the quarter 15-13.The first quarter by Mohawks would best be described as sloppy and without structure, though this would be reversed in the first four minutes of the second period.


Lions didn’t play that badly, more so Mohawks upped their game with Moore, Fisher and Thomas sparking an impact and earning an 8pt lead 15-23. Lions coach; James Thomson called a Time Out and the result was astonishing as Middlesbrough produced a 20-4 run with four players hitting points. The Lions defence was impressive as Craig Stevenson and Papis Samb dominated rebounds while Robinson collecting two of his four blocks in this period, the first being an incredible swat on the driving Thomas. At the end of the half, Lions were excellent value for money, leading 35-27.


Mohawks would provide their best period in the third quarter but a 3pt edge would not be enough to gain momentum. Lions transitional play was excellent with O’Connor running the wings and Richy Summerbell making skilful shots both in and out the key. Whatever Mohawks tried, they were unable to reduce the lead beyond 5pts and this was right at the end as Thomas earned an ‘And 1’ but missed the free throw and Jordan Nicholls fired a buzzer beating basket to bring the visitors to within 5pts, 54-49. Middlesbrough would save their best til last as an 8-0 run at the start of the final period gave the Lions a 13-0 lead.


Richy Summerbell was instrumental in leading his side with support from Samb and O’Connor. Alex Moore was ploughing a lone furrow for Lions, but even that only provided two baskets. The only other Mohawk to score more than once in this quarter was young Shane Beadle. The 6’10 18 year old looked very comfortable in his two minute spell. Fittingly, Lions star man Tom Robinson hit the final basket with a put back from a rebound, his 10th point of this quarter.


Since the fourth minute of the second quarter, Lions looked comfortable and they would finish as 13pt winners to a triumphant roar from the large attendance at Eston. In the stats, Lions edged the Mohawks in most categories, out rebounding their local rivals 38-24, steals 18-11, blocks 6-3 and most significantly assists 17-7. Lions Coach; James Thomson was elated with the win but more so by the performance "This game was a huge game for us. Mohawks brought out some of their big guns and were intent on winning this, but we managed to out play them in all areas. Our defence was superb and to limit some of their big names to 10pts or less is a credit to us."


The MVP shone bright in Tom Robinson on the back of an incredible 34pts, 13 rebounds, 6 assists, 6 steals and 4 blocks with no turnovers in what was close to a perfect game. Papis Samb also enjoyed a double-double with 18pts and 14 rebounds along with 7 steals and 4 assists.


For Mohawks Alex Moore was the main threat with 22pts, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 5 turnovers. Top scorersTADEA Lions: Robinson 34, Samb 18, Summerbell 18, O’Connor 10Mohawks: Moore 22, Thomas 15, Fisher 10 The Lions now progress to the second round and will play division four rivals Hull Wasps on Humberside on the 23rd October. This date will mean the planned celebrity game will be postponed and also means Lions play away to Hull on the 22nd in the league and back on the 23rd for the National Shield.


The official supporters club will be running a supporters bus to both games at £16 adults and £14 children including travel and game ticket. Contact Martyn Seymour on 07824665513 for more details or to book.


National ShieldTADEA Middlesbrough Lions 82-69 Tees Valley Mohawks II


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