BASKETBALL: Rugby Rage

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The past week Rugby Rage had two fixtures in a week against third placed Warwick Juniors. Warwick having played some brilliant basketball of late produced their best performance of the year at home on Wednesday that inflicted Rugby Rages first defeat since early November. However, the opportunity for revenge was around the corner as Rugby Rage were hosting Warwick the following Friday.

The match started ominously as the Rage could not manage to muster a full squad as they did on Wednesday due to injury, work and family commitments and therefore had to compete with only six players.

Leon Steip (19) led the way with some early fantastic fast breaks and trademark speedy offence that nullified the quick three point scoring offence of Warwick. Jay Stovell (2) promoted to the starting five for the second time in two weeks had a fantastic game finding himself in great positions on court that led to a number of assists. Unfortunately, Didzis Grunsdiz (11) had a nightmare start to the game as he picked up three quick fouls in the first half and was left frustrated as he was substituted off for player coach Rupal (12). At half time Warwick led the game by three points and looked very comfortable against the six man Rage team. However, coach Rupal took the gamble and brought foul troubled Didzis back into the game.

Wanting to make up for lost time Didzis quickly began scoring and nailed two important back to back three pointers to put Rage ahead by two going into the last quarter. With both teams beginning to feel the pressure and with the nerves building it was the experienced players and hopeful allstar candidates Kurtis Johnson (9) and Marcin Marchlewicz (16) who began to control the match. They combined well on a number of occasions and in the dying minutes Marcin and Kurtis made a number of crucial stops that set up an amazing 69-66 point victory for the six man Rugby Rage team.

The win saw Rugby over take Warwick once again and climb even higher in the league table and steadied the Rugby Rage ship heading into their semi-final match against the 14 year veteran team Tile Hill Trojans.