Caledonia Pride came within a milli-second of beating Cardiff Met Archers to record their first win in the Women’s BBL in their first home game at Oriam on Saturday.
Ahead as much as 45-32 with under five minutes of the third quarter left, Pride, inspired by a heart-warming six-from-eight three-point shooting haul from long-term injury victim Sarah Thomson, appeared to have victory in their grasp.
Archers, however, ably led by their GB 2012 Olympic veteran point guard Steph Collins, had other ideas and they gradually wound in their hosts.
But with the scores tied at 69-69 Pride were awarded a foul and side ball possession with 0.4 sec left, theoretically enough for a winning basket.
Tricia Oakes, the tall American home centre, even found the net from the inbounds pass but the clock was adjudged to have expired and overtime ensued.
Archers took a firm grip of the extra five minutes to run out 83-74 winners.
“I’m really gutted,” said Pride coach Bart Sengers.
“We needed that win for a Play-Off spot. Now it’s going to be difficult.”
“We saw some good basketball. Our third quarter was really excellent but we’re just not there yet.”
Oakes, despite having a throat virus which had limited her training, ended with an impressive 25 points and 13 rebounds while former EU and Edinburgh Kool Kats forward Hannah Peacock, another with a chronic injury problem, made a good return with 10 points and nine rebounds and former St Mirren point guard Robyn Lewis played the entire 45 minutes.
Thomson, another former Saint, finished with 22 points.
She had rolled her ankle at the start of the season and had looked apprehensive in a recent appearance for EU.
But as the shots went in her grin grew wider and by the end of the game she was not only enjoying herself but encouraging the younger players as well.