Ilkeston Outlaws put in a hard-working display to win 60-50 away at Notts Nova on Sunday.
Outlaws started off well, going up 8-2 for the first five minutes of play but in the next five Notts came back and dominated, outscoring Outlaws 13 to 1 and going in at the end of the quarter up 15 to 9.
In the second quarter Outlaws again came out firing and pulled it back to within two points, driving to basket and getting fouled every time, although they were not hitting the initial shots and having to earn the points on the free throw line rather than an additional point.
Nova then came back on a run finishing the quarter 30 to 18 in the lead. Seven of the ten Outlaws players had scored in the first-half with fine rebounding from Alex Wolverson and Tiago Geraldo throughout the whole game.
Nova hit a trio of three-pointers at the start of the third leading to an Outlaws time out nad the introduction of Aaron Shepherd, whose quick hands and feet would be an asset.
Together with Ethan Roberts and Sam Ringer he closed down the Nova offence from a three-point perspective.
Outlaws fought throughout this quarter and it ended up 11 points each, the visitors 41-29 going into the final quarter.
Outlaws took the bit between the teeth and came out fighting. Eight of the ten Outlaws players made baskets again a thoroughly good team performance and by the ninth minute the arrears were reduced to 47-43.
Roberts drove to basket and scored but failed to convert the free throw leaving Outlaws two behind, before Nova added two more points to leave Outlaws 49-45 down going into the last minute.
But Shepherd then stole possession to score and Geraldo also added a basket to dramatically send the game into overtime.
Overtime saw Outlaws dominate. Outstanding defence played a key part, smothering Nova at every opportunity and putting their bodies on the line and in the process scoring 11 points to Nova’s one to claim the 60-50 win.
Most Valuable Player for the match went to Sam Ringer who came out with 18 points and scored seven of ten free throws, although the victory was a huge team effort.
Team: Sam Ringer (18 pts), Tiago Geraldo (12), Aaron Shepherd (10), Ethan Roberts (6), Harry Lebeter (5), Alex Wolverson (3), Dan Surgay (3), Dan Town (2), Oli Ball, Calum Miller.