The Horsham Hawks beat local rivals the Crawley Cagers for the second time in as many weeks with a solid offensive performance coupled with strong rebounding.
Horsham got off to a positive start taking an early 13-4 lead with eleven well executed first quarter points from Josh Lea-Clayton before a strong Crawley side battled back to outscore the Hawks 10-8 narrowing the hosts advantage to 21-14 as the period ended.
The Hawks offence exploded in the second quarter with twenty unanswered points triggered by intense defence and confident rebounding from Joshua Tavolieri, Harry Rose and Amy Willcox that set up wave after wave of fast break opportunities that were skilfully converted by Miguel Venturini and Charlotte Willcox. A late four points from Crawley made the half time score 50-19 to Horsham.
A re-energised Crawley team came out fighting after the interval scoring 8 straight points to start the third quarter before Horsham responded with an 11-0 run of their own with baskets from Fin Bennett and Anaya Wakefield. With less than ten seconds remaining at the end of the quarter Lea-Clayton hit a fifteen foot jump shot before immediately stealing the ball back and setting up Miguel Venturini for another long jump shot as the buzzer sounded extending the Hawks lead further to 75-33.
Antonio Lozzi and Tavolieri added to the Hawks scoring to begin the fourth quarter before a resilient Crawley team again fought back to the end the game outscoring Horsham 10-4 over the final five minutes.
The 87-45 victory sustains Horsham’s perfect start to 2015 and sets up an exciting fixture next week as current Sussex league leaders, Worthing visit Horsham to play the second place Hawks.
Scorers: Josh Lea-Clayton - 23, Josh Tavolieri - 18, Charlotte Willcox - 16, Miguel Venturini - 10, Antonio Lozzi - 6, Harry Rose - 4, Finley Bennett - 4, Anaya Wakefield - 4, Amy Willcox - 2, James Lowe, Isla Head