A sensational start to the opening game of the season against 2015 champions Arden
Griffins brought a shock 100-68 victory for Cracovia Stratford.
Arriving at The Stratford Leisure Centre with the minimum five players, Griffins had the misfortune
to see Lee Fraser led off the court just three minutes into the first period with blood streaming
from a split nose, forcing him out of the game and leaving the remaining four players to sweat it
out for almost the entire playing time.
As it was, they performed heroically and had Stratford all over the place as they sped into a 25-12
first quarter lead, before they were worn down and finally ran out of stamina and ideas with
Stratford piling into them to take advantage of their misfortune.
Griffins were still battling at half-time as they trailed by one, but their collapse came in period
three when former National League player Kane Hudson stepped on the gas to fire Cracovia to an
unassailable lead which saw them go from 44-43 to 72-55 and, for Griffins the end could not
come soon enough. Hudson nailed 21 points for the hosts and Luke Hatfield hit 32 for Griffins who
can’t wait for the return when they can get their full squad out.
Champions Tile Hill Trojans 1 swept past Coventry College 74-58, with five players in double
figures and only last season’s top scorer Vaidas Cerkunovas the leading light for College. He made
26 but lacked the support of another strike player as Trojans powered up to a 69-42 lead before
easing off in the run-in to the end.
A battered and bruised Leamington Spartans, returned home pointless from their 82-51 reversal
at last season’s Division Three winners Tamworth Tigers. Spartans captain Jan Suk said, “They
played as a real first division side and were much bigger and better than we expected.” Spartans
also had a player nursing a cut above the eye after being caught in an accidental collision with
“one of the giants” as Suk called them.
Aylesford Hawks looked impressive in their opener and they clinically disposed of Coventry
Tornadoes 94-45, courtesy of 33 from Ricky Fennell, whose total included seven three-pointers.
Tornadoes had no answer to Hawks play and were torn apart from the start, going 29-8 down
after one period and trailing 59-14 at half-time before rallying somewhat in the latter stages.
Both Ernesford Eagles and Tile Hill Trojans 2 fielded weak sides at Hereward College, and Eagles
were happy to record a 46-43 victory, coming from behind in the last minute to thwart the home
side, as Ben Clarke starred for the visitors on 20.
Division Two fixtures saw victories for Westwood Rhinos who defeated Tile Hill Trojans 3 50-44,
and Rugby Rage, who travelled to Team Rebels before going home on the back of a 73-58 win.

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