Falkirk and Edinburgh pick up first wins of the season under impressive debuts
Falkirk Fury and Edinburgh Kings opened their seasons at home on Friday night, both in front of capacity crowds at Grangemouth and Portobello respectively. With Fury taking on St Mirren, the Grangemouth crowd was set for a thriller. Portobello, however, was hoping that their perennial championship side wouldn’t see promoted side Perth Phoenix as a potential banana skin.
Both sides boasted new signings with Falkirk welcoming 3 new signings to the country while Edinburgh welcomed back former players, as reported earlier in the week.
Makaleb McInnes got his Fury debut off to a flying start as they took on old foes in St Mirren. A tight opening quarter saw the American Guard find his flow with his new team, but it was St Mirren’s Adam Hammerschmidt, who signed from Fury, who gave the Paisley side the lead early on.
A 31 point outing from the former Black Hills State guard clinched Fury the W after some thrilling final minutes.
Head Coach John Bunyan told basketballscotland,
It was a crucial game for both teams. Annually St Mirren and Fury are up in the top four, if not winning the league or runners up so it’s really important for both teams and to get the win at home was great as it would be tough going on the road to St Mirren with a loss.
I’m glad we’re sitting 1-0. Both teams have new players and are just building, I would imagine that during the season both teams will improve. More organised, more structured and the players will know each other a lot better, so I think both teams are going to be a force to be reckoned with this season.John Bunyan
In the capital, Perth Phoenix traveled to take on the reigning Playoff Champions who, themselves, welcomed back a plethora of youth products. Finlay Wood made some noise as he returned to Scotland as his time at Essex University and Essex Leopards came to an end.
Things were looking shaky at the end of the first half as Perth led 41-35. A second half masterclass from the veteran side saw Kings’ new big three of Ali Mackay, Konrad Kantorski and Wood combined for 75 of Edinburghs 88 points, with ‘debutant’ Finlay Wood putting up a massive 35 behind some knockdown 3 point shooting.
The win cements new coaches Paddy Campbell and Gareth Lodge on to a good start with Lodge telling the Edinburgh News,
It was a great start to what we hope will be a successful season. It was a good performance against a tricky team as we didn’t know much about them. We had several guys unavailable through injury and other reasons, so we’ll hopefully have a few more faces for Friday’s tough away game against St Mirren.Gareth Lodge, Edinburgh Kings Co-Head Coach
Kings travel West on Friday night as they take on St Mirren, who look for their first win under new Head Coach Matt Giroux.