By Nikos Silikas
"Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter" - Mark Twain
Our ageing squad travelled north for this Tuesday night game. Furthermore, it did so without our coach Mike Greenough, and our super scorer Max. Both were unavailable for different reasons. The travelling proved to be more exhaustive than the game. This was evident in the first quarter, despite a strong start by Neil Siddall, supported by his whole family, and scoring the first five points. Nonetheless the lack of rhythm and several unforced errors resulted in an uninspiring quarter that Stockport managed to get a narrow lead by 13-11.
Things improved in the second quarter when Stockport managed to put together short runs of 6-0 and win the quarter by 19-9, thus leading at half time by 32-20.
The third quarter started slowly but half way through Stockport played some of the best basketball of the night. Spearheaded by Paul Brookes back-to-back 5 points, it had a run of 11-0 that gave Atlas a commanding lead of 47-24 that effectively put the game out of reach for Ribble Valley. The actual quarter was fairly balanced, with Stockport winning it by 18-13 and leading by 50-33.
The last quarter was rather philosophical with Stockport winning it by 15-6. The final score of 65-39 was a fair representation of the game. Ribble Valley had been superb hosts, with excellent table officials, and the game was played in am amicable environment.
Neil Siddall was dominant as always and was the top scorer with 14 points. Kyriakos Air-Neanidis (23 number shirt), followed with 12 and Tom Sutton had 10 points managing to out score both his brothers (playing for Ribble Valley)!
A sore point was the free-throw percentage that with 6/14 was a rather disappointing 43%. Though lack of showers and pints at the end of the game had a devastating effect for the visiting team. Till the next game..