Well done to the U16 CVL Rams Core boys for winning a pulsating final which must have shredded the nerves of our supporters but demonstrated how much they have improved as a team. It was an excellent team performance with the added bonus of Henry at his unstoppable athletic best, scoring 31 points in the process.
Having beaten last years winners, Cobham Cougars, in the semi-final the previous weekend, there was good reason to be hopefully of a positive result in the final against a Richmond team that we had beaten by 20+ points just a few weeks before. However, as often happens in a final, Richmond fielded a stronger team and gave us a really tough game … in fact they looked like winning at one stage in the 3rd quarter. We had to contend with the disappointment of losing Nick from the line-up before the start, as Richmond highlighted that he had played for the Surrey Rams Elite team against them earlier in the season.
The Rams started the game well in Q1 with Henry and Matt (with a 3 pointer and an “and one” – not sure if that’s how you put it) getting the scoreboard moving with Sajad, Lucas and Ed also contributing. Rams led 28-22 at the end of Q1.
The second quarter was a bit scrappy with both teams giving way a lot of fouls. We didn’t take advantage with only 3 of 10 free throws being scored (all by Stefan). Despite the low scoring we added a couple to our lead and led 45-37 at half time.
In Q3, Richmond made a strong comeback to lead briefly by two points, despite James (whose impact was restricted by time on the bench due to 3 early fouls) hitting two of his three 3 pointers. Ollie came more into the game with 8 points in the quarter, including 6 from 8 from the line as Richmond’s foul count mounted. The lead was down to two at 72-70 going into the final quarter.
It felt like the game could go either way in Q4, but the Rams finished strongly to take the game away from Richmond who had 5 players fouled out. Stefan top scored in the quarter with 10 points. Tom, Tyler and Tolo did not make it onto the scoresheet this time but all contributed to the winning team performance.
The total points were as follows; Henry 31, Stefan 18, Ollie 13, James, 11, Matt 9, Lucus 4, Ed, 4, Sajad 2.
This will be the last ever CVL game for many of the boys, so it was an excellent way to finish. It was great to see the team collect their medals, Henry picking up the CVL team trophy and Ollie the MVP award.
Once again, well done to all the boys, the Rams supporters and of course to Lekan who coached the boys well, as always, and used the players well when the game got tight.
Match report by Pete Blakey