Jordan Edgington reports on the final game of the BUCS season for Exeter’s men’s basketball team, which saw a resounding 96-50 victory over the University of South Wales.
Exeter welcomed the University of South Wales on Wednesday afternoon in the final BUCS game of the season, knowing a win would secure them third place in the league standings.
Right from tip-off, it was Exeter’s game; USW were being forcefully dictated to with Krivickas showing his extraordinary prowess by converting three tidy lay-ups in a quick succession.
USW had their danger man too, sporting the number 10 shirt and voluptuous long brown hair. The opposition’s ‘go-to’ man showed Exeter what they had to be weary of sinking a three pointer and scoring a free-throw shortly after.
But Krivickas wasn’t having any of that. Exeter’s esteemed number 9 powered to the basket, sending the Welsh 10 to the floor with brute force as he rose above his opponent, gently tucking away another lay-up.
Exeter weren’t giving USW a sniff – they restricted them to audacious three pointers which never made it, and as soon as they tried to drive themselves towards the basket, Exeter’s defence stood strong, crowded them out and wistfully manoeuvred the ball to the other end of the court.
The best moment of the first period came a couple of minutes from the buzzer, when Austin turned provider with a sumptuous pass for Krivickas to again finish off. The first period ended 23-9 to Exeter.
The second period was more of the same, except Exeter were even more dominant. Within the first minute, Anstiss had scored another lay-up while Shaw intercepted a pass and raced away to finish himself.
Some of the plays on show were magnificent. The whole team were so in sync with each other and had the skill and flair to pull off everything they tried, epitomised by a lovely piece of build-up play between Keil and Krivickas that was finished off by Srinivas.
Krivickas saved the best of the half until last however, dancing through three opponents with his kick feet and agility and duly laying-up, sending Exeter to a 49-14 lead at half time. The game was all but over.
To be fair to USW, they weren’t ready to give up, as they scored quickly at the beginning of the third period, but Exeter were mentally and physically faster. Straight away, the quick thinking of Anstiss gave Moore the opportunity to race away and combine with Krivickas to make the two points conceded mere seconds earlier redundant.
As much glamour as there was to Exeter’s attacking game, there’s much to be said for their gritty defensive work, with Anstiss dominating, commanding any rebound or loose ball. Every USW’s number 10 picked up the ball, he was double-teamed before he could lift his head.
The third quarter followed as the preceding two with more elegant attacking from Exeter and resolute defending. The most impressive moment of the period was when Krivickas, again involved, picked up the ball deep in his own half and launched an under-arm pass almost the entire length of the court allowing Chamberlain to put more points on the board.
Exeter went into the final period 72-31 in the lead, and for the last four minutes, there was a whole team swap as Krivickas, Anstiss, Srinivas, Chamberlain and Mkinsi came up to play what would be their last 4 minutes for the basketball team. It was 84-40 when they came on and 96-50 by the final buzzer thanks to a delightful final flourish by the five third years.
When Anstiss was asked about his reflection on the season, he said: “It was a little disappointing. In the three years I’ve been playing this has been our worst performance wise. However we have come third in a strong league where any one of four teams could potentially win.”
“In my three years here, I always wanted to leave the club in a better position than when I started. With such a strong team ethos and team chemistry; the future looks good for the team,” added a clearly emotional Anstiss.
One thing is for sure, Anstiss and his fellow third years can certainly be proud of what they’ve achieved in this team. Krivickas picked up MVP for the second year running, averaging a mightily impressive 39 points per game.bookmark me