The Giants suffered a heartbreaking loss away from home to the Sheffield Sharks 80-81 with a layup from Robert Marsden just putting the game out of reach for Manchester. 

The two sides were neck and neck for a large majority of the game with nothing being able to separate the two. 

The game started out with a quick basket from Sheffield followed by a multitude of high percentage shots in the paint from both teams with all but two made baskets coming from inside the paint. Whenever a player attempted to shoot from outside the paint the basket seemingly had a lid on it with only a three from Justin Satchell and a mid range shot from Bennett Koch finding their way in, the former scoring 10 points in total for the quarter as he finished with 20 points in total followed by 8 rebounds and 2 assists as he keeps up the momentum from his first prosperous week in Manchester. 

As both teams continued to take high percentage shots at the basket David Ulph was in his element around the rim scoring 8 of his 16 points in the second quarter alone and also managed to pick up 7 rebounds, 5 of which were on the offensive glass. Even with Ulph and Satchell working their magic the teams were still inseparable with the scores at the half being 44 -43. 

The long stoppages in play were no help to either team as both seemed to be unable to find a scoring rhythm, even so the teams battled on. Even if the struggles from three continued. The Sharks started to take a bigger lead than any in the game into the third with the scores being 60-68. That was however cut right back down to size early in the fourth. 

As the game went on and the paint seemed to be the go to for both teams a fair few fouls were committed with David Ulph (as brilliant of a game he played) being ejected after picking up 2 fouls in the fourth quarter after being on three fouls prior. This didn’t seem to rattle Manchester who kept it close up until the very end. 

”The guys really gave everything tonight, we competed really well without a big man in the middle. Definitely, one that got away against a tough Sheffield sharks.” Said Head Coach Danny Byrne 

Manchester will look to bounce back against Bristol on Sunday at the National Basketball Performance Arena. 

 

Words – Michael Blain

Photo – Harry Collins