Sheffield Hatters started the New Year hosting Northants Lightening and Liffey who had travelled from Ireland to play in the friendly tournament. After the games Ariel Parrucci ran a training workshop on Sunday 5th January which saw all the teams come together to learn new skills.
On Friday 3rd January the U15s team captain Jo Lowry led by example with a 15 points top score as City of Sheffield Hatters U15 girls overcame a spirited Liffey Celtics side to run out 71-56 winners in a friendly at All Saints. The Dublin side were at a disadvantage having had flight delays and transport problems prior to the start of the match, but showed no signs of fatigue as an initially tight first quarter ended with the Hatters taking a 20-13 lead. The second quarter saw the Hatters take their foot off the pedal and lightning fast breaks by Liffey enabled them to take a 3 point lead without the home team scoring a single point. Following a time out and team changes, the Hatters were able to regain the initiative, going into the half time break with a slender 2 point lead at 30-28. The third and fourth quarters followed much the same pattern and whilst the Hatters were able to use a slight height advantage to execute their set plays, the speed and strength of Liffey didn’t allow them to totally dominate the game. A nine point 50-41 advantage at the end of the the third quarter was increased slightly in the fourth quarter to give the Hatters their 15 point 71-56 win.
Hatters team: J Lowry (captain); M Dooley: B Rutherford; S Harrison; G Brownell; B Braidley; I McKerrow; E Neath; V Francis-Lewis; Z Silcock; N Cuti; J Quinn.
Scorers: Lowry 15; Harrison 14; Brownell 10; Neath 10; Dooley 9; Francis-Lewis 4; Silcock 4; McKerrow 2; Quinn 2; Cuti 1.
On Saturday the 4th of January, the Sheffield Hatters faced Northants Lightening during an all day tournament, however lightening took the lead early on, as the first quarter ended 23-4, but the Hatters defended strongly during the second quarter, by only letting Northants score no more than 4 points, while the Sheffield Hatters scored 6 points, making the score 27-10, with Northants on top at half-time. On the other hand lightening came out fighting, and added another 24 points to the score, to the Hatters 4, but going into the last quarter the Hatters tried their best and restricted Northants to 14 points, and scored 6 themselves, so the game ended at 20-65 to Northants Lightening, although the Sheffield Hatters battled it out to the end.
Thank you to all those that attended the tournament and especially to those that helped organise it.