Jr. NBA East Finals 2019 - Recap

The East Jr. NBA Finals came to a close on Wednesday after a great day of basketball from Essex Sport Arena at the University of Essex. The event was the latest in a series of excellent Finals events as the Jr. NBA programme comes to a close for another season.

The day began with Suffolk’s Copleston High School taking on Marshland High School for a place in the Year 7 Final. Copleston were flying the flag for Miami Heat, with Marshland donning the famous red of the Chicago Bulls. It was a tight game from start to finish, eventually decided by a single basket as the Bulls came out on top, winning 25-23.

Over on court 2, the Year 8 Western Conference Final was playing out as St Paul’s Catholic School punched their ticket to the afternoon’s final with a comprehensive 61-26 win over the New Orleans Pelicans from Notley High School. The victory for St Paul’s meant that Portland Trailblazers would be keeping their hopes of a Championship alive, emulating the success of their real life counterparts.

The action kept on coming shortly after as the other two Conference Finals got underway. The Year 7 competition provided yet another nail biter as Woodlands School as the San Antonio Spurs snuck past Beaumont School by the narrowest of margins 21-20. It was a tough defeat for the LA Clippers to take in a game that could have gone either way.

The afternoon’s Finalists were rounded out in the Year 8 competition as Westley Middle School knocked off Marshland 48-15 behind some stingy defence and slick ball movement. The win for the Knicks was a confident one, giving Westley plenty of momentum whilst the Detroit Pistons had to settle for a place in the 3rd/4th place game.

As a regular feature of the Jr. NBA Finals, the Shooting Contest took over to break up the day’s play with some very impressive displays from a number of players. St Paul’s Josh Ngienga and Marshland’s Grantas Domkus were crowned the eventual winners, receiving a rousing ovation for their efforts along with some great NBA goodies.

With the Shooting Contest out of the way, it was back down to business and Beaumont School made short work of Copleston to seal 3rd place in the Year 7 competition. Getting after their opponents at every opportunity, Beaumont held Copleston to just 9 points in the game, pouring 39 at the other end for a comfortable win.

It was a similarly one sided affair on the other court as the Pelicans from Notley pulled out all the stops to beat Marshland 41-11. Lockdown defence was a feature of New Orleans’ play as they build a big lead, never looking back from there to earn 3rd place.

All of the afternoon’s potential champions were worthy Conference Final winners, but only two could be crowned Jr. NBA Champions. In Year 7, Woodlands School seized their opportunity for glory as they stormed past Marshland 61-12. They were deserving of their Championship Rings and their celebrations on the final buzzer were incredible to see. St Paul’s completed their strong play on the day with a solid performance against Westley School, sealing a 49-33 victory as they also grabbed their chance to enjoy a winning end to their season.

Today’s event in Essex was the first of a trio of Jr. NBA competitions to finish this week. Tomorrow the entertainment heads over to the East Midlands and Wolverhampton, before concluding in Loughborough on Friday. We’ll have updates on both events on the Basketball England social media channels.