The Bulldogs Reserve side travelled to take on Ipswich Saxons at Inspire Suffolk in Suffolk Division Two, with the side still missing Jay Trye & Johnny Ward through injury.
Youngster Oli Cowling started brightly for the Bulldogs, scoring seven points in the opening five minutes as the game stayed tight. Threes from Sam Howard and Jim Walker kept the scoreboard ticking-over before four points from David Wise in the final minute of the quarter handed the Bulldogs an 18-19 lead to end the first.
Bulldogs held the Saxons scoreless for the opening four minutes of the second, but six missed free-throws meant that they were unable to extend their lead, and Saxons bit-back to take a two-point lead into the final minute of the half, before veteran forward Andy Binns tied the scores at 38-38 going into the second half.
Binns also registered the first score for Bulldogs in the third quarter, unfortunately it was on the other side of a 16-2 run from the home side. While Ash Read, Walker & Cowling notched ten combined points to end the quarter, the Saxons extended their lead to 72-50. A better final quarter saw the teams exchange baskets, however, seven missed free-throws also handed the quarter to Saxons, who won the game 95-68.
Leading scorers for the Bulldogs were Oliver Cowling (17), David Wise (14) and Jim Walker (11).
"We made a slow start in the third quarter, and couldn't recover from there" said Coach Seb Benford, "We let ourselves down in that quarter - but otherwise, we competed well against strong opposition".
"There were some positives tonight" said Captain Glenn Collins, "we had much better ball and player movement, and didn't have to work as hard to get our shots. Unfortunately, we lost our way a little in the third quarter, and it led to a bunch of fast-break points the other way."
Oli Cowling was awarded Player of the Game with Coach Benford saying "Oli gave us solid defensive pressure, and stretched the floor with his ability to score from range as well as getting the ball on the floor and creating."