THERE was a poignant feel to proceedings on Saturday when Warwickshire Bears hosted a friendly against Shropshire Warriors in remembrance of Luke Parker, a former player of both sides.
Many former team-mates and friends of Luke came to pay their respects a year after he lost his brave battle against cancer.
The following day, the Bears travelled to Swindon to play Swindon Shock, the team they lost to in last season’s national play-off final.
The Bears travelled with a strong squad for this British Wheelchair Basketball League Division One South encounter, in which the visitors prevailed 76-45.
Shock took full advantage of Bears’ slow start and used their fast break game effectively to get into an early lead.
The Bears suddenly woke up and turned the game around, with Siobhan Fitzpatrick and Jacob Robinson going on a scoring spree which took the Bears into a comfortable 21-11 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter was again all about the Bears’ offence as they pulled further in front and limited Shock’s main threat Macauley Tomlinson to only distant shots.
Bears’ Dan Gill had a MVP game and Derek Hall found his range at the basket as the Bears went into half time with a healthy 41-23 lead.
The second half saw the Bears use their strong bench and, with all players hungry after a long absence from competitive games, all came on and got on the scoresheet as the visitors eased to victory.
Bears coach Tom Masterson said: “It was good to finally get some game time in for the team. Although Swindon were unfortunate to be missing some of their team, they were still a threat with Macauley Tomlinson playing, but I think the team managed him well whilst taking full advantage of their opportunities.”
Bears become Wasps Netball affiliated club
AFTER the success of the Bears Women’s wheelchair basketball team, they were invited to showcase wheelchair basketball in the Wasps fan village at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday prior to the game against Severn Stars.
At the first quarter interval the Bears WBC were presented with a signed match ball by Wasps community officer Jordan Young.
The Bears were then treated to a fantastic game which Wasps won 62-46.
Bears Women’s coach Jacob Robinson said: “Being an affiliate club to the Wasps organisation is a great opportunity for not only our ladies’ team, but for the club as a whole.
“To be able to get our club and our sport into the mainstream media is invaluable. Thank you to Wasps for this opportunity and we look forward to the future.”
The Bears are still looking for a sponsor for the team and always looking to recruit new members, especially female and junior players. Email [email protected] or call 07946 518354.