THE BASINGSTOKE Blizzards basketball team put up a gallant effort, but were unable to stop Karl Taylor Cup favourites South Bucks Comets marching into the final four of the competition at Queen Mary’s College.
The home side knew they were in for a tough test against a side with just one loss all season – and this was by a single point.
The tempo was high from the start as the Blizzards stayed with the visitors for the first five minutes.
Rob Gerrard scored from some great assists by Aaron Taylorson, but by the first break the Comets led 18-12.
South Bucks extended their lead, but Gerrard and Taylorson kept the points coming and by half-time the visitors had a 38-31 lead.
The Blizzards turned up the intensity in the third quarter, as they looked to stop the turnovers and avoid the Comets fast breaks, but when leading scorer Gerrard picked up a knee injury, things looked bleak as they trailed 46-35.
The Blizzards hit back and great work by Rob Bloomer and baskets from Taylorson and Gerard Grabuleda saw them score five unanswered points.
The lead was then reduced to single point, after Jim Darlow scored and Adam Paddon hit a three-pointer. As the third quarter came to a close, the Comets led 55-53.
However, their gallant effort came undone as, missing Gerrard, the Blizzards tired in the final session, allowingSouth Bucks to take the win 78-59.
Their next home game is on March 11, when they face a visit from REME Arbofield. Tip-off at Queen Mary’s College is at 8.15pm.
Scoring: Gerrard 19pts, Taylorson 11, Darlow 8, Grabuleda 7, Bloomer, Lilly 4, Paddon 3.