U13 Horsham Hawks 75 – 67 U13 Worthing D&D
Dave Smith – Sports Editor
The U13 Horsham Hawks claimed victory over the reigning Sussex league and cup champions for the second time this season in a home thriller featuring fifteen lead changes and seven ties.
It was Worthing who struck first scoring twice inside the opening minute to go ahead 4-0 before the Hawks responded with two baskets from Josh Tavolieri to level the contest. This pattern repeated for much of the first quarter with Worthing edging ahead and Horsham clawing the score back until the Hawks managed to take their first lead of the game in the eighth minute with two converted free throws from Fin Bennett. A late 6-0 Horsham run saw the Hawks go ahead 21-20 at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter Worthing edged ahead again opening up a five point cushion before Horsham clawed the score-line back to 31-33 with less than a minute to go in the first half. Another late 6-0 Hawks run to end the quarter gave Horsham a 37-33 advantage going into the halftime interval.
Horsham exploded out of the gates to start the third quarter extending their lead to nine at 49-40 with baskets from Bennett, Tavolieri, Antonio Lozzi and Miguel Venturini. Worthing continued to battle hard and responded with a 15-7 run of their own to close the score-line to 57-53 as the third quarter ended setting up an exciting finale.
Despite an early well taken basket from Amy Willcox, Worthing had the better start to the fourth quarter exploiting a tired Horsham defence with a 10-4 run that put the visitors ahead 63-60 with five minutes remaining. A resilient Hawks team refused to quit and strong attacking basketball from Harry Rose pulled the lead back to a single point with four minutes to go and all to play for. Worthing scored another two baskets extending their advantage once more before Bennett and Tavolieri again cut the lead to a single point with just two minutes remaining. A Horsham timeout settled the nerves as the Hawks went onto close out the contest in a calm and intelligent manner with well executed scores from Bennett and Charlotte Willcox while holding Worthing scoreless for the remainder of the game to seal a hard fought victory 75-67.
Scorers: Josh Tavolieri – 23, Fin Bennett – 21, Charlotte Willcox – 12, Antonio Lozzi – 8, Harry Rose – 7, Amy Willcox – 2, Miguel Venturini – 2