Cheshire Pheonix’s winning streak came to an end at the hands of Caledonia Gladiators, as it ended 82-92 at the Ellesmere Port Sports Village.
The Nix had all the confidence heading into the game off the back of the reverse fixture on Friday night (Nov 24) when they won 83-92 making it five wins on the bounce for them.
The Gladiators were hoping for a win after four consecutive defeats in all competitions which included getting knocked out of the FIBA Europe Cup. They were sitting sixth in the table coming into Sunday’s game, but with a couple games in hand because of the European Cup.
Caledonia started off on the front foot showing their physicality from the outset. The American floor general, Ian Dubose, played a massive part to secure the lead for the Scottish side early on. The first quarter ended very close at 25-29 with the home side hoping they would recover positively.
However, the frustration began to show for Ben Thomas’ team when the Nix’s head coach started to voice his opinions to the referees after a few decisions went against them. The home side were constantly getting themselves into the great positions but seemed to lack the final shot. This was the main disappointment for the roaring home fans, but it didn’t stop them cheering at the top of their lungs for one minute.
As Pheonix went into half time down 39-50, the team talk was going to need to work wonders for them to get back on track after that tough half.
— Cheshire Phoenix (@CheshireNix) November 26, 2023
Cheshire started the third quarter more positively and the fans were loving it but they still lacked the confidence when it came to the final shot. A reason for this could be the away side’s great defence with the main man being Prince Onwas. As a result, the Gladiators were able to extend their lead ending the quarter 11 points ahead, 62-73.
Going into the final quarter it appeared the Nix had too much of a mountain to climb to keep their winning streak alive. However, five minutes into the final 10, the home side brought the score level to 76-76, courtesy of six foot seven Skyler White who made three pointers all night. The 30-year-old was a joy to watch.
The fans were going wild and the Pheonix players looked as if they were enjoying the game for the first time all night.
The home side showed so much grit and determination, but it just wasn’t enough as the Caledonia Gladiators continued their strong showing and won the match 82-92.
Pheonix remain second in the table ahead of their next game being against Leicester Riders at home.