Preston’s College basketball team led from tip to buzzer as they posted a resounding 117-37 victory at home against Kendal Warriors in National League Division Four.
Guard Anthony Stanhope led the team with a superb shooting display as he finished with a game-high 23 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals in little over 20 minutes of action. Melkisedek Moreaux closely followed with 22 and Kyle Carey 18.
The home team jumped out early on the visitors and established a commanding 17-point lead as the first quarter drew to a close.
By the end of the second quarter that ballooned into a 46-point lead.
Indeed as the first half came to a close the team were in front 67-19 with England Under-18s standout Carey hitting a buzzer-beating three of his own to further sink the dagger in the hearts of Kendal.
As the fourth quarter started and with the result no longer in doubt at 91-29, coach Malcolm Leak started rotating his bench players and throwing various defensive rotations at Kendal.
The scoring kept apace as the home side throttled the visitors with their defensive intensity as they restricted them to just 18 second-half points.
As the buzzer sounded the team had registered the highest points total this season whilst setting a new record for fewest points allowed.
Leak said: “We made extra passes and got our shooters set to score. We’ll take the win and focus on our next game and prepare with the same energy and attitude we have done all season.”
Stanhope said: “I think it’s really down to my team, they really looked for me throughout and got me the ball in spots that I could score.
“I think that it was a great team effort with good energy from start to finish. The crowd and the good atmosphere really helped us out.”
The win sees Preston consolidate their fourth spot in the league with a 9-6 record, with a game in hand over fifth-placed Gateshead.
Next up for the side is a road trip to Leeds to take on the struggling Tigers.
With an top-three finish and automatic chance of making the play-offs now a distant memory, the team now hope that they can rely on results in other conferences going their way and hope to sneak the one spot that is on offer as the best fourth-placed finisher in the country.
“If we come in fourth and don’t make the play-offs that will give me more inspiration in the summer to come back stronger and recruit harder,” added Malcolm.
In other action, Preston’s College Under-18s t took care of business, seeing off Sefton Stars 84-31 with Melkisedek Moreaux underlying his scoring performances of late with 24 points.
The win maintains their 100% standing in the NW Conference with a 13-0 record with only three games remaining.
However, two of them are against arch-rivals Myerscough College who are also unbeaten and so it could well come down to the last game of the season to decide who lifts the U18 crown.
“I think we haven’t shown our best punch yet, right now we haven’t hit them with our best punch, “ said Leak.