This past Sunday, the club hosted four home fixtures, with many members of the Junior section of the club making their first ever home appearance.
The day started with the U14’s taking-on Beccles Bombers, with several of the squad making their debut. Captain Jo Whiteman controlled the pace in the early going and Noah Sparks-Shepherd showed his ability to score in bunches, but it was the energy of Player of the Game Aiden Steel and fellow forward Ethan Rogers which stood-out in a game which Bury led start to finish en-route to a 48-30 win.
Coach Rob Fisher said "There's a lot to work on, but it was great to get our guys some experience out there in a real game, and we really appreciated the support of the families and club-mates."
The second game of the day saw the Bulldogs U17’s welcome OWE Snipers to Skyliner, and the sides started evenly, as Alfie Parrish and Jim Walker connected from deep, while Patrick Ambrose displayed a level of skill and intensity which has helped him to make an early impact in his career at the club. With the scores tied during a first quarter timeout, it appeared that we were in for a tight contest, but Snipers ratcheted up the defensive intensity which led to some easier offence for them, and they ran away with the game from there 86-38. Patrick Ambrose was Bulldogs Player of the Game.
Coach Seb Benford said "We were missing several important players today, but I can't take anything away from our opponents - they were superb. For us, it's not all bad news, there were some real highlights today, and now it's about working to take that next step as a team."
The next game saw Poringland Lions, of Norwich, visit Skyliner for a friendly against the Bulldogs Reserve side, and while the Bulldogs again started brightly, Lions strong inside play helped them to build an insurmountable lead – despite the best efforts of Player of the Game Oli Cowling to cut into it late on.
In the final game of the week, Bulldogs faced Cambridge Cougars, who eked ahead at the end of a back-and-forth first half. Having started the second half poorly, Coach Arron MacDonald was then ejected by the match officials in the third quarter, and the sides traded baskets the rest of the way as Bury fell to another loss. Captain Billy Smith was again named Player of the Game.
“It really was a superb day for our club today - but one of the longest most of us have had for some time!” said Coach Arron MacDonald.
“The results were clearly not what we had hoped for – but if you’d have said a year ago that we’d be able to host four games in a day and have over 200 people in the gym, nobody would have thought that possible. Today is a sign of just how far we’ve come – and also how far we have left to go.”
“The losses are stacking up, and it hurts. Clearly, I’m not happy with the day’s final game – and I’m shocked to have been ejected from a game for the first time ever as a coach – but that isn’t the focus right now. We need to get everyone on the same page and working to improve, and the results will follow.”