Raiders lose 94-78 to Plymouth Sharks in opening game of season despite great performance

Despite a fantastic showing, the University of Gloucestershire’s men’s basketball team were beaten 94-78 by Plymouth Sharks on October 9 at Oxstalls Sports Park. 

It was a brilliant team effort from the Raiders who were unlucky not to beat the side that came second in the British Universities and Colleges Sport Western Tier 2 last campaign. 

Coach Ian Greaves said he was “so pleased” with his side but admitted the lack of training may have cost them in the final stages of the match.  

He said: “You could see by the fourth quarter we had three guys down with cramp. We’ve only had one proper training session so far so based on that we did a great job”. 

The Raiders were beaten badly last season against Plymouth but thanks to some new additions this season, Gloucestershire look like a side to be reckoned with.  

Greaves had been curious to see how the team would fare against top opposition but based on this performance there is lots to be excited about. 

“A lot the guys exceeded my expectation out there, especially after what happened last year”, said Greaves. 

“Plymouth will be one of the top teams in the league and based on this performance, we won’t be far behind,”.

“We struggled last year to score over 40 points in a game so we’re disappointed because we were better today than that score line suggests.”

New players Sebastien Blin and Jake Hawksbee were immense and took every opportunity to drive at the opposition, causing constant problems for Plymouth.

Both had to end the match on the sidelines due to cramp which was a testament to their hard work throughout. 

The physicality and height of new center Ayo Adeiga meant he was also a real handful for Plymouth and the Oxford native said he was happy with his debut performance.  

He said: “I thought we were really good. It’s a great start to the new season and I enjoyed it a lot. Hopefully we can go on and improve in the coming weeks and games.”

Greaves was quick to stress though that every player had given their all and they could be proud with their performance against Plymouth. 

“There were some excellent individual performances, but you can only get that if you’ve got the team behind you working hard and the boys did that well.

“This performance today has really galvanised the team to really believe that there’s things we can do.

“Nobody that I put on that court let me down, they were brilliant.”

The Raiders next game is against Exeter Second’s on October 16 and will once again be at Oxstalls Sports Park in Gloucester. 

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