In a game that saw every travelling player feature on the scoreboard, Caledonia Gladiators came out victorious in a battle down south vs Oaklands Wolves as the squad dispatched the hosts, winning 60-91 after a dominant four quarters.

Miguel Ortega’s side had already faced the Wolves in February, picking up an impressive 86-62 victory at PlaySport on the 5th of the month, off the back of a 19-point outing from captain Erin McGarrachan. The Scots hoped to go 2-0 against the St. Albans-based outfit on the season with a win in Oaklands.

Despite Oaklands winning the opening tip, it was Caledonia who got the game going with the first bucket – a reverse layup from Ari Pujol. Their quick start was matched as Shaquera Wade tied the ball game at 2 shortly after. The hosts’ first bucket was insignificant, at least in the context of the first few minutes – as the travelling side met it with a 7-2 run thereafter. Although they played some scrappy basketball, with several turnovers, Caledonia managed to continually add to the scoreboard as Ortega went 9 players deep in Q1 – his side dominating early on and coming out ahead after ten minutes – 7-21 – expanded late on with an Erin McGarrachan buzzer-beater.

Wolves failed to score in the first two minutes of period two, as Gladiators scored the first two buckets of the quarter – before Oaklands went on to convert one of two free throws to open their account. A Robyn Lewis fast-break layup as part of an 8-1 Caledonia run forced a Lee Ryan timeout as the visitors extended their lead to 8-29 with seven minutes until the half. High Performance player, Alix McIntosh featured for the first time in the game, meaning the entire travelling squad had entered the court before halftime. The Scottish side took advantage of open looks and continued to control the game. After twenty minutes, Caledonia doubled Oaklands’ points – leading 23-46.

Gladiators’ dominance was highlighted by their rebounding prowess at the half – leading the game 26-13 in that category, with Bintou Lo and Kirsty Brown putting up 7 and 5 respectively.

Scottish connections opened up the half for Caledonia – as a Robyn Lewis dish led to a Hannah Robb finish for Gladiators’ first score. Although they were down significantly, Oaklands went shot-for-shot with the leading side, battling as they led 7-6 in the opening minutes of the third. A coach technical for Oaklands added fuel to the fire, although they did have their highest-scoring period of the first three – with 19 points. After three quarters, the Gladiators’ lead was maintained, as they were up 42-68 with just ten minutes remaining, hoping to close out a win.

The final quarter started slowly, with just 7 points between the two sides in the first 4 minutes. Amongst the seven, a Kirsty Brown finish ensured that every player on the court for Caledonia had scored – an impressive feat that proved Gladiators’ phenomenal bench depth. Impressive team basketball rounded out a strong outing for Caledonia and despite Oaklands’ fightback, it was the Scottish side’s game by the end – winning 60-91 and securing their tenth win of the league campaign.

A second double-double in as many weeks secured Bintou Lo’s MVP performance on the night. She put up a strong 15 points, 12 rebounds and 2 assists.

Next up at PlaySport for Caledonia is Nottingham Wildcats – who travel to East Kilbride on the 3rd of March, tickets are available HERE!