St Mirren’s Cadet Men got back to winning ways against Dunfermline – but only just!
A solid start to the match saw the Buddies take a five-point lead in the first five minutes but they became sloppy as the game went on.
Dunfermline drove to the basket and set up their big players inside the key, resulting in easy scores.
The end of the first quarter saw Dunfermline take a five-point lead at 20-15.
St Mirren were really struggling to convert chances in the second quarter. The big men were dominating inside but failing to convert second and even third chances.
And a variety of substitutions didn’t make the expected breakthrough either.
Dunfermline continued to play a fast, attacking game and won the quarter 19-13, taking a 39-28 lead at half-time.
Saints started to put pressure on the Dunfermline defence in the second half and strong driving to the key forced the opposition into many shooting fouls, although Saints struggled to convert their free throws.
Fortunately, some precise outside shooting allowed St Mirren to win the quarter by five points and cut the deficit to 51-45.
The Saints players were now determined to catch their opponents and sustained attacking produced a string of fouls.
Saints were able to get the game to all-square in the last minute, only to concede a foul with four seconds to go. This gave Dunfermline the chance to finish the game at the free throw line.
But nerves got the better of the opposition, meaning the teams went into overtime with the score tied at 63-63.
St Mirren were able to raise their game for the final five minutes, managing to convert some free throws near the end of time.
Strong defending helped to keep their opponents out of the key and a final score of 68-66 to St Mirren came as a relief to the fans.
This was a game that Saints should have won comfortably but, once again, poor free-throw shooting – scoring only 13 of 40 shots – caused the home side some problems.
Top scorers for Saints were Colin Jackson, on 23 points, and Jon Faulds, with 12.
Their next game is at home to Falkirk Fury at Linwood Sports Centre tomorrow, with tip-off at 10.45am.