The Encon Derbyshire Gems played solidly to gain victory for the third time this season over local rivals the Mansfield Giants this time by 62-50.
The Gems took control in the opening quarter and after that although the Giants pulled within 6 points the Gems had the class to keep them at bay.
Rachel Campbell opened strongly for the Gems with 3 quick baskets followed by a brace from captain Kate Loftus as the Gems led 10-2.
Star guard Nerea Josebe was playing excellently directing the gems attack with great ball handling and some clever assists. Steph Ogdon closed out the quarter with a “3 pointer” as the Gems led 18 -7.
The Gems began the second quarter equally strongly as Steph Ogdon hit another “3 pointer” however the Gems lost fluency and because of their foul trouble the Giants hit back to win the quarter and trim the Gems lead at 30-23 at the interval.
The third quarter was tightly contested and despite the Gems efforts with Nerea Josebe, Jo Clayden and Steph Ogdon again all hitting 3s Mansfield closed by a single point at 44-38.
That was as close as the Gems allowed them to get as Jo Clayden found her range and with an accompanying scoring burst from Kate Loftus the Gems had a lead of 15 before the Giants replied on the buzzer as the Gems won 62-50.
Scorers; Jo Clayden 13, Steph Ogdon 13, Kate Loftus 10, Rachel Campbell 8, Helena Palmer 6 , Kendal James 6, Nerea Josebe 5, Jade Clemenson 1
This victory secures a runners up spot in the division and a home tie in the post season, which is great progress for the Gems in only their second season in the National League.
The Gems will take their place in the post season with a home tie in the quarter finals on Sunday 8th April when they will host a team from the South group.
Westminster Warriors 84
The Linbraze Derbyshire Arrows played excellently against one of the powerhouses of the Division in the hugely physical Westminster Warriors before going down 72-84.
It was only a power blitz of 24 -5 by the Warriors in the latter part of the second quarter that accounted for the Arrows who won two of the other quarters and shared the first.
The Arrows opened strongly as Joseph Baugh and Matt Wilson played powerfully in attack and when linked to a hustling defence the Arrows shared the first quarter 24-24.
The trend continued into the second quarter however with the Arrows trailing 34-33 the Warriors went on a scoring blitz as the Arrows were in deficit at the interval 57-38.
To their credit the Arrows fired back to take the third quarter 17-12 with Napthali Nembhard hustling strongly. In fact it could have been even better if the Arrows had executed better at the foul line.
The Arrows at one point in the final quarter threatened a remarkable comeback however the Warriors had just enough to repel the arrows as the game ended in a 84-72 defeat.
The Arrows second game of the weekend was lost to the weather leaving them with yet another game to wedge into an already crammed fixture list.
The Arrows look to be safe from relegation baring a string of unexpected results.