MILTON Keynes College’s basketball academy A Team will represent the East at the UK Finals next year after winning their regional qualifying tournament in Essex.
It is the first time the city team have ever won the tournament, beating the College of West Anglia 46-32 to quality for the Finals weekend to be held in Bath in May.
And it’s shaping up to be a memorable season for the team who currently sit top of the British Colleges Elite League after an impressive unbeaten start to the campaign.
They also reached the final 16 of the Elite Cup, losing for the first time this season to the Copleston Sports Academy.
However, they bounced back from that disappointment with a commanding display against the College of West Anglia, with Michael New junior – son of Milton Keynes College basketball academy director Mike New – leading the scoring on 14 points with Matas Bliuzdius. Jordan Spencer also had an outstanding game, chipping in with five assists, three rebounds and three steals.
New recruit Jordan Chaney and Lee Tievans also played very well in the final, scoring six and eight points respectively.
Head coach Mike New said: “Our boys were determined and wouldn’t take no for an answer as we out played a heavily armed College of West Anglia side.
“Their team was heavily built around a Lithuanian influence as the coach and most of their players were from Lithuania. Their style of play is tough, physical, vocal and in your face. But our boys didn’t bat an eyelid.
“The B Team are tied for second place in the second division of the league with only two losses and are still alive at the final 16 stage of the Non-Elite BCS National Cup.
“I’m also happy to say that we have only lost one player between both of our teams for academic reasons, which means that our student/athletes are getting it done in the classroom as well.”