Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

A Basket-Load of Talent on Display in Knights' Squad; UNIVERSITY BASKETBALL

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

A Basket-Load of Talent on Display in Knights' Squad; UNIVERSITY BASKETBALL

Article excerpt

AN outstanding 95% winning record has cemented the Newcastle Knights as legitimate league title contenders and one of hottest university basketball teams of the moment.

The first half of the 2014/15 season saw the Knights deliver 19 victories while losing only once across three different leagues - the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) League, the National Basketball League (NBL) and the National Shield.

Led by Ian Hewitt, director of basketball and men's head coach, the surging squad is locked in a battle for top spot with Salford University in the BUCS Northern 1A League.

After exchanging home victories in the first half of the season, both teams are in the top two places with a 6-1 winning record, six points clear of thirdplaced Northumbria Seconds. Hewitt said: "This team is the most talented we have had at the university and I knew going into the season the battle for honours would be between ourselves and Salford University.

"Due to us losing by 32 points at Salford we knew beating such an experienced and greatlyskilled team by 33 points was always going to be a mountain to climb.

"What impressed me about this team, though, was the belief and determination we could still do it.

"The guys played every second of the home fixture where we managed a 19-point win.

"We never gave up on each other and that quality will hopefully take us far in the BUCS Trophy and help us finish off the BUCS League with only one loss.

"We have Derby in the BUCS Trophy and we know how tough they as they feature a large contingent from the NBL Division One team Derby Trailblazers."

In their first NBL season, the Knights have taken Division Four North by storm.

The squad has excelled against Sunderland City Predators, Myerscough College Giants, Leeds Tigers and Gateshead Phoenix.

It sits at the top of the table with an unbeaten record in nine games. …

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