IT’S an extra special occasion for City of Sheffield Hatters on Saturday.
The team entertain league leaders UWIC Archers at All Saints (4.30pm start) in their VIP game which also marks the official start of the club’s 50th anniversary celebrations.
Hatters, who have at long last secured sponsorship with Health365, are currently second in the Women’s National Division One table, two points behind their Welsh rivals but with a match in hand.
Katie Crowley’s side will look to build on their impressive performance at Leeds Carnegie when a superb third quarter points fest earned them a 79-64 victory.
They led by a single point after the first session but trailed 34-28 at half-time. Hatters then stepped up to the mark and with Lisa Hutchinson dominating the supply line and Stephanie Gandy bagging the points, they regained the lead and extended it by 11 at the three-quarter mark having scored as many points as they did in the whole of the first half.
Gandy finished top scorer with 26 points while the Naylor sisters, Sarah and Helen, again showed their skills around the basket, with 21 and 18 points respectively.
Table; UWIC Archers pld 9 pts 16, City Of Sheffield Hatters 8 14, Nottingham Wildcats 9 14, Leeds Carnegie 11 12, Sevenoaks Suns 9 8, Barking Abbey Leopards 10 6, Team Northumbria 8 2, Brixton Lady Topcats 10 2.
Hatters second team never recovered from a nightmare journey to the north east when they went down to a comprehensive 94-43 defeat at Durham Bobcats.
Top scorers: Lindsay 19, Carrick 12, Clayton 5.
Hopes of a place in the final of the Sureshot Cup were extinquished as the Under-16s crashed to a 74-40 defeat in their semi-final at Manchester Mystics. The third quarter proved vital as the home side dominated to score 25 points and restricting the Hatters to just three.
Team and scorers: Courtney Shaw 12, Rhianna Laing 6, Abbie Simpson 6, Jess Dooley 4, Isobel Hannity 4, Serena Sampson 2, Georgia Gayle 2, Katie Burgoyne 2, Mairead Faulkner 2, Elaine Anderson and Zuiko Kafamba.
The team bounced back 24 hours later to gain a 59-54 victory at Cheshire Jets.
Team and scorers: Mairead Faulkner 14, Courtney Shaw 11, Serena Sampson 9, Jess Dooley 8, Rhianna Laing 8, Abbie Simpson 5, , Isobel Hannity 2 Naz Saghafian 2, Katie Burgoyne, Elaine Anderson and Zuiko Kafamba.
Hatters Under-13s earned a victory double in friendlies against Leicester Riders and Leeds Carnegie. They trailed Leicester 30-22 with just one minute 24 seconds remaining but staged an excellent comeback to come through 33-30
Team and scorers: Eleanor Goodwin 14, Grace Twomey 10, Molly Axelby 3, Millie Dooley 2, Jo Lowry 2, Shauna Harrison 2, Phillipa Wilson, Eleanor Neath and Veronique Francis-Lewis.
The youngsters built on this success with a 31-25 victory over Leeds Carnegie.
Team and scorers: Grace Twomey 7, Eleanor Goodwin 6, Shauna Harrison 6, Molly Axelby 4, Phillipa Wilson 4, Jo Lowry 2, Veronique Francis-Lewis 2, Eleanor Neath and Millie Dooley
Saturday’s fixtures: National League Division One: Health365 Hatters v UWIC Archers, All Saints, 4:30pm; National League Division Two North: Health365 Hatters II v Sunderland City Predators, All Saints, 2:30pm; Under-16 Girls National League North: Leeds Carnegie v City of Sheffield Hatters, Leeds Met, 1:30pm; Under-14 Girls National League Midlands North: Nottingham Wildcats v City of Sheffield Hatters, Wildcats Arena, 10:15am.