The Caledonia Gladiators return from the Cheshire Oaks arena bruised after their disappointing loss on the road to the Cheshire Phoenix.
The Gladiators got off to a promising start as Patrick Tape opened the scoring with a layup to give the visitors a lead that would last them the majority of the game.
Princeton Onwas’ slam dunk on the back of Jeremiah Bailey’s intuitive no-look pass was the highlight of the first quarter as the Gladiators went into the break ahead at 20-28.
The Gladiators continued their dominance in the opening half thanks to impressive performances from the likes of Bailey and Sloan.
Bailey boosted the Gladiators into the half time break with a nine-point lead as he continually dropped huge three pointers to end the first half at 38-47.
In the third quarter, Cheshire’s Larry Austin Jr. stole the show as he led his side on a monumental comeback which was sealed when Marcus Evans sunk a two pointer to put his side ahead as the clock bled down to the final seconds.
This was the Phoenix’s first time leading in the game as they started the fourth quarter with the score board at 59-58.
The final quarter was the tightest of the game as both sides traded points throughout.
David Sloan’s backwards, overhead pass set up Onwas for a solo dunk with no resistance as he tied the game up at 71 points each with little under a minute left.
From then, it was Cheshire who took control. Will Neighbour made a three-point play before Jamell Anderson rounded off the win with an emphatic dunk.
Fittingly, Tape bagged the first and last points of the game as he drove to the basket to grab two points right at the buzzer but it was only a consolation as Cheshire took home the win at 77-73.
Written by Sam Scouller