Injury-hit Mansfield Giants crumbled to a 103-98 National Cup Second Round defeat by Loughborough Student Riders on Saturday.
That followed a 72-55 first league defeat of the season for Giants’ women by the same club.
Giants’ men were already without four players and things went from bad to worse on the night as they lost point guard Scottie Summersgill, who suffered from a freak knee dislocation accident in the warm-up.
Mansfield had to quickly adjust positions prior to the game starting, but got off to a flying start.
As expected the game was end to end, but eventually Loughborough won the first quarter 26-24.
Again the Giants raced out of the blocks and started to play with great determination and opened up a six-point gap going into half-time.
The Giants then caught fire, playing their best basketball of the season, and continued to build on their lead, which went up to 20 points.
Charles Gamble threw down a massive dunk as the Giants fans erupted.
However, Dan Richards then went down with a knee injury and had to leave the game.
Now the Giants really struggled for guards and Loughborough started to press and clawed back a few points, though the home side still lead 81-66 going into the final period.
Loughborough really started to press hard, and the Giants had no answer, turning the ball over again and again.
Mark Woodhouse kept the Giants in front with prolific shooting, but Loughborough just kept coming at them to eventually snatch the game.
Giants’ top scorers: M. Woodhouse 31, C. Gamble 30, D. Richards 14.
For the women, it was an evenly matched first few minutes, with Loughborough Student Riders II edging a lead over the home team.
But the fast young team kicked into second gear, piling the points on the bigger Giants to take the quarter 20-10
Giants’ experience shone through in the second quarter, using their size to their advantage to draw Riders into foul trouble.
It seemed as though the home team had taken control of the game, pulling back to within two points and working the ball round to dominate from inside.
However, Loughborough had other ideas and, with their coach running their long bench to keep players fresh, Giants ran out of steam in the final quarter.
Giants’ top scorers: Van Alten 24, Bridge 15, Levitt 9.
Giants Women are away to Leicester Warriors on Saturday, looking to grab their second win of the season.
The 2013-14 league campaign starts for the men this week with an away trip to London Westside on Saturday, then the Giants are back at home again on Sunday with another game against Loughborough in the Patrons Cup at the Oak Tree Leisure Centre (2pm).
Bring a copy of this week’s Chad article to gain a reduced entry fee of adults £2.50, U16s £1.50.