Buxton Hitmen 47, Wightlink Islanders 43
DESPITE being without skipper Danny Warwick and teenage reserve Adam Ellis, Wightlink Islanders put up a brave fight at Buxton before going down to a 47-43 defeat in their penultimate National Trophy match.
Warwick was unavailable because of a prior commitment which the club were aware while Ellis, 16, had to go back to France, and to school.
Warwick’s absence was adequately compensated by a ten-point return from guest Lewis Kerr, who backed up high scores from both top scorer Paul Starke (13) and reserve Danny Stoneman (12).
The pivotal moment came in heat 12 when Islanders’ Ross Walter was disqualified from a re-start after being judged to have brought down Buxton’s Ryan Blacklock on the first lap.
In that re-start the home side scored a maximum 5-1 win with Steve Jones finishing third and that the Islanders trailing 42-30 with just three races to go.
Although Islanders scored maximum wins in two of those heats, a draw in heat 14 put the match out of our reach.
"We put up a good fight considering we were without both Danny and Adam," said co-manager Chris Hunt. "At least we came away from the Dales with a point for our efforts. Admittedly all four points for an away win would have been better but fair play to Buxton who beat us on the day."