So close to national glory

PUBLISHED: 09:00 04 February 2009 | UPDATED: 22:59 15 June 2010

So close, but yet so far, for the Honiton Girls in the U15 national basketball finals in Nottingham.

So close, but yet so far, for the Honiton Girls in the U15 national basketball finals in Nottingham. They faced the Champions Great Baddow School from Essex in the first game of the tournament. With the lead changing hands 11 times during the match, Honiton eased ahead by five points with two minutes 34 seconds remaining. Then disaster struck, as the referee expelled three of the Honiton girls within two minutes to leave the door open for Great Baddow to steal a game that they probably did not deserve to win, 46-44.The Honiton girls were distraught. Teacher /Coach Keith Henman said: "The girls were quite outstanding. They fought the National champions to a standstill. Some of the decisions didn't go our way but Great Baddow did come back on us. Maybe that's why they are still champions! We need to learn a lesson from this."Honiton then had to go on and play Shenfield, losing 58-48, and Preistanall, losing 62-43. Coach Henman said: "To be honest the rest of the games became irrelevant. We were a broken team and I don't think there is a coach alive who could have managed to pull them out of such a shattering experience.".Karen Burton, the England U16 coach, complimented the Honiton team by saying: "I though Honiton had some poor calls. Some of their players are quite outstanding."What next for the Honiton team? Coach Henman said: "We all need time to reflect on where we go from here."l Squad: Hannah Keating (captain) ,Lauren Shawyer, Georgina Paul, Beth Hutchings, Rachael Hopkins, Lydia Boland, Rebecca Laramy, Natalie Turl, Emily Dunn, Luize Rich, Laura Woolacott.l Honiton CC play Elton School (Manchester) February 4, 2pm tip at Honiton Sport Centre in the U16 National schools' competition.

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