Preston’s College men’s basketball team continued their impressive start in their maiden campaign in National League Division Four with an impressive 80-69 win away at Lancashire Spinners 2nds at Blackburn College.
Captain Daniel Miller was yet again the inspiration behind the win as he joint top-scored with Melkisidek Moreaux on 22 points.
Kyle Carey followed closely with 12.
In a tight first quarter, Preston traded baskets with the home side as they began to feel their way into the game.
Some sloppy play ultimately cost them from building a bigger lead and they ended the quarter only up by five at 14-9.
Yet Preston found some renewed optimism as they went on a 10-0 tear to start the second quarter and kept up the pace to finish the half with a commanding 41-24 lead.
The theme continued for much of the second half.
And even though the home side threatened a comeback late in the fourth quarter, Preston had enough answers of their own on the defensive end to close out comfortable winners.
“I thought we played exceptionally well,” said Preston head coach Malcolm Leak.
“Our guys played unselfishly and fed off one another. It was certainly pleasing on the eye. Our defence was exemplary and we contained them when they made their runs, we weren’t rattled.”
The win moved Preston’s College level with Gateshead Phoenix in fourth place with a 6-3 record heading into the Christmas break.
Miller – who has been the heart and soul of the team in the first half of the season – was delighted with the win.
He said: “It was a brilliant team performance as we played unselfish for the full 40 minutes.
“It was a great feeling after the game for every player involved and it’s starting to show that our hard work is finally paying off,” added the captain, who is leading the team in scoring with an average of 18.8 points per game.
Carey underlined his recent selection for the England Under-18s squad with 12 points of his own.
“I think the game went well,” he said.
“A real positive to take out of the game was that our bench production was very good and everyone contributed to the win.
“As a team we need to be able to finish teams off when we have a commanding lead and not allow them to get back in the game.”
Preston now take a hard earned break before resuming in the New Year with a long trip up north to face a Newcastle team that has yet to lose this season.
Leak believes that there is a lot to learn from the recent 37-point drubbing they suffered at the hands of Newcastle in November.
“We will break the game tape down, have a look at them more closely,” he said.
“We know what they are about, what their guards can do. If we correct some of the mistakes that we made in our home game against them then we can catch them out.”