You've reached Barking and Dagenham Erkenwald Basketball Club's revamped website.
We trust you'll find all the information that you need on our club here but, should you need any more, please don't hesitate to contact us.
It is also very likely that we'll be attending the Caister Festival of Basketball again in 2012.
There is also an Erkenwald women's team that plays in the Essex Ladies League and for the first time we'll be adding their news to the website.
Finally we'll be maintaining a page detailing all the action from the Phil Cooper Cup competition in memory of Phil who sadly passed away in July 2007.
Where we play
Castle Green Leisure Centre, Gale Street, Dagenham, RM9 4UN
Tip off: Wednesdays at 20:15
Daws Heath Road, Benfleet, Essex SS7 2TD
Tip off: Friday at 20:00
Caister 2012 Erks Vets
The 2012 Caister festival was something of a watermark for Erkenwald, as it was the first time since a mid-90s flirtation with a 1st & 2nd team, that the Erks had sent two men's teams to the festival. More significantly, this was the year when the long serving players who formed the core of the London Met winning sides of the 90's and the initial NBL squad of end of that decade bowed to father time and entered as 'Erkenwald Veterans'.
The more youthful Men's team, who once again lost in the final to the Met Police will have their campaign chronicled elsewhere and the Erks Ladies who fought a valiant campaign in easily the toughest group of the tournament deserve huge credit, as they beat eventual runners-up Holbrook Tigers and suffered their only defeat in the final game to All-Starz to bow out on points difference in a 3 way tie. However this is predominantly a story of basketball heavyweights.
The Veterans squad assembled was virtually a who's who of Erks basketball from the last 25 years and it was only virtually because Keith Pringle refuses to acknowledge his advancing years and waistline and insists on playing with a team with a legitimate chance to win. The Erks roster contained members of various legendary teams, 5 of the London Met champion side of nearly 20 years ago, 5 of the last team to win Caister a decade ago and 3 of the team who lost to the most pronounced one man team in Essex Met basketball history, when that one man wasn't playing*.
However even without Scarlet, one thing was clear, the Erks had assembled a powerful and well balanced squad.....for a tug of war.
With Keith otherwise engaged, Gary suffering with an ankle injury, Declan hobbled by a hip injury and Broms allegedly having spent much of his 5 years in retirement eating, the ability of John Powell and Steve Herd to switch seamlessly between the guard and forward spots was sure to be tested, however with the remainder of the squad made up of Church , Jonny Lee, Chims, Shakey and Martin, size was unlikely to be a problem, apart from when vests were being allocated.
To get around this issue Declan had ordered a special set of vests for the occasion and it was pleasing to see that with the Live Aid generation having contributed to so many appeals for sports kit to be sent to Africa, a reciprocal arrangement now appears to be in place, as all bar one of the Erks were kitted out in the Ethiopian middle distance running vests from the 1978 Commonwealth games.
Shakey was the exception, as having been tipped off that the alleged XXL vests were unlikely to accommodate his impressive bulk, he took to the court in a matching XXXXXXXL Nike top, maintaining his 17 year streak, across 11 different clubs (and national teams), of never wearing the same kit as his teammates.
The early conversation amongst the squad was of the likely weight of Broms, an issue that proved to be a red herring as he arrived no more out of shape than 70% of the team, so the speculation switched to the draw and the Vets chances of winning a game. The general consensus was that one win would be acceptable and a couple of wins would be a successful campaign, so it was with some trepidation that the draw sheet was perused.
The established rule at Caister is that the more teams with a 'comedy' name in your group the better, so a draw that yielded the Army, Huntingdon Hawks, Scouting for Girls and Light Condensation looked promising, and upon arriving at the Norwich SportsPark to find that the Army had scratched, the possibility of qualification for Sunday's knockout stages suddenly loomed large. Unfortunately the only thing looming larger was the Erks starting 5, who resplendent in cheap synthetic under-sized vests, sported the most impressive set of bellies in the tournament.
Church, Jon, JP and Herdy were complimented by Gary, who had recovered miraculously from an ankle injury that only 3 hours early was going to keep him out of the tournament. Gary was also suffering with loss of feeling in his left arm (an injury that has a broadly similar impact on his ability to play his usual game as the time Lionel Messi cut himself shaving) and the hairy shouldered court general presumably also had severe blisters on his little toes from the pair of winkle pickers he was wearing. Therefore it was of something of a relief to the guard deprived Erks that he was able to play at something approaching game pace.
Against Light Condensation, who it was later established were a Cheam Chargers social team searching for their 2nd Caister win in approximately 20 years. The Erks quickly imposed themselves by falling 8 points behind, as despite a succession of Church jump shots from around the key, the Surrey outfit fired away indiscriminately from downtown and with the cumbersome Erks hanging off to protect the paint, hit a tournament's worth of treys in the first half.
The second half therefore turned into a desperate struggle, as the rusty Erks searched for a complementary scorer to Garbage Time Dave and Any Time Martin in an attempt to avoid a defeat against a team that on 12 minutes evidence they should definitely beat. In the event, two scorers were found and crucial as Declan's one free-throw was, the man of the hour proved to be Steve Herd. Herdy rolled back the years with a succession of mid-range jump shots and baseline moves and although Cheam kept in touch with some further three-pointers and the odd drive to the hoop, when the dust settled, the Erks survived a final possession heave to take a 34-31 point win.
Confidence suitably boosted by surviving a close scare, the Erks headed back to the new Summerfields camp to sample the nightlife. For Dave Churches, released into a Caister environment for the first time in 5 years, this was his opportunity to drink like he would never be allowed to drink again (actually he may not) and the big man didn't let anybody down. Church was absolutely paralytic by midnight and predictably was therefore of absolutely no use for the following morning's 9am game, although he did do his late and hung-over teammates one huge favour before stumbling through the game and falling asleep for 3 hours on the café floor.
Church managed to delay the tip-off for 10 minutes by passing wind in such noxious fashion that neither official felt it safe to step onto the court until the gas had dissipated. This allowed the Erks to perform something resembling a warm-up and Church a suitable gap to put the disabled toilet out of action for the day, however it did mean that the Vets hit the ground running against possibly the only side in the tournament older than them. Although the first half was closely contested, the Erks ended the half with a 8-2 run, capped when Chims made the most of his traditional last 30 seconds of the half run-out by rebounding a JP shot and then banking in a hook shot on the buzzer. The fact that the buzzer went off a good second after the clock hit zero is entirely incidental when Sheri is at the table ** and when the Erks started the second half with a 13-2 tear, the game was over and the Erks were looking forward to the group decider, which in true Mick Byrne scheduling fashion was 6 hours later against Huntingdon, Erks triumphing 30-16.
The youthful Hawks presented an obvious obstacle to the Erks, in that they had a bench full of players who could run and jump, however it soon became clear that only one of them could shoot from outside and none could cope with Herdy roaming around the baseline. After a slow start, the Vets worked out their opponents and shut down the Huntingdon shooter and as the Hawks struggled, the Erkenwald offense ground on relentlessly. Amazingly Chims again emerged from the bench for 30 seconds to put back the final rebound of the half, leading some spectators to conclude that given a full game, he would put up 96 points and 48 rebounds, a conclusion he emphatically proved wrong against Hammers the next morning....
With a lead of 21-18 at the half, the second period turned into if not the best half of basketball of the Vets tournament, certainly the best 12 minutes of wrestling, as the Hawks went to a full court press and the Erks managed to stay afloat despite taking no less than 7.8 seconds to advance past half court on each occasion.
In fairness to JP, that's as fast as he can get to halfway these days, and with Dec and Gary throwing a few elbows and Church finally emerging from his alcohol induced coma to hit 4 free throws in the last minute, the Vets hung on for a 33-30 win and the most unlikely Erkenwald group win of their 20+ years at Caister.
With a bunch of over 40's having played 3 basketball games and had a heavy night on Friday, it was all most of the Vets could do to stay awake until Mick Byrne took the stage to announce the draw, let alone muster a chorus of 'ho, ho, ho'. However they did manage to stay conscious long enough to register that Brightlingsea at 11am was their 'prize' for winning the group. With late nights and roaming around the camp now off the agenda, the Erkenwald conversation on the Saturday night revolved around the clubs' all-time starting 5 (Keith, Gary, Herdy, JP, Church), the best cage-fighter in the Vets team (Church picking up the most votes on a simple size basis, but Declan adamant that he would take him) and the tricky conundrum of what is Shakey's actual basketball position.
The ultimate conclusion was that despite Shakes first two shots of the festival being air-balls from the top-off the key and his legendary tendency to head out on the break rather than ripping down a rebound, he is just too slow to be a guard. On the other hand, apart the obvious size corollary, his game is somewhat bereft of big man traits.
However, the one constant when Shakes is involved is that he is a captivating presence on the court, whether performing an off the ball commando roll against Scouting for Girls, trash-talking in the London league, starting a fight at the end of a 20 point blowout, or hitting 6 points in 30 seconds off the bench without ever going back into his own half. Therefore it was resolved that if the Erkenwald Hall of Fame idea ever gets off the ground, right alongside "Churches #14, Centre" in the rafters, would be a Nike near replica of an Erks shirt in memory of "Terry Rose #15, Crowd Pleaser".
Unfortunately, with Herdy having torn his Achilles in the final minutes of the Huntingdon game and Gary having finally succumbed to one of his many injuries, the Erks were forced to take the court on Sunday against the perennial Essex powerhouses Brightlingsea without their most effective scorer and hitherto starting point-guard. Although having Gary on the bench did mean the Erks had the option of going to the patented Glennard coaching tactic of subbing somebody off for 20 seconds whilst he made a point and then subbing them back in again.
Also, having faced most scenarios in 25 years of basketball, Erks coach McCusker had an entirely new drama to contend with, would his most youthful player Martin make it back from church in time for tip-off on Sunday morning? Martin had arranged to attend a service close to the SportsPark and actually made it before most of his colleagues, but in truth, the backing of the Lord and the respective fitness of the squads was largely irrelevant in this mismatch and with the go-to offense being a JP or Declan outside shot, the Erks predictably failed to set the scoreboard ablaze in the first half, although they did chip most of the paint off the backboard.
A 20-5 deficit at half-time became a 41-15 run-out for the Hammers, a margin that fairly reflected the difference between the sides, as in truth the Erks had already achieved their goals of winning a couple of games and enjoying each other's company again and despite physical appearances to the contrary, had little stomach for a scrap.
Erkenwald Veterans Party:
4 Declan McCusker - coach/non-shooting guard
5 David Bromfield - point guard/Roy Kinnear stunt double
7 Martin Overare - small forward/usher
8 Gary Glennard - point guard/50's fashion icon
10 Steve Herd - small forward/actually looked like a basketball player
12 John Powell - guard/forward/large in the toilet area
13 Richard Williams - forward/last 30 seconds of the first half specialist
14 Dave Churches - centre/drunken oaf
15 Jon Lee - centre/substitutions advisor
26 Terry Rose - crowd pleaser
Sheri Powell - Table/Olympic official/Grand Cross of the Order of Vyautas the Great (2nd highest honour in Lithuania)
Jennie Montanana - Referee/Secretary, Kevin Waterfield fanclub
Sharon James - Arrived on Saturday to avoid the traditional Shakey Friday night bid
Light Condensation: Churches 13, Herd 12, Overare 8, McCusker 1
Scouting for Girls: Overare 12, Powell 7, McCusker 4, Herd 2, Williams 2, Bromfield 2, Lee 1, Churches 0
Huntingdon: Herd 12, Overare 7, Churches 6, Williams 2, McCusker 2, Lee 2, Powell 2
Hammers: Churches 7, Overare 5, Lee 2, Powell 1
*see Broms, Shakey or Chims for details
**see Sheri or Gintaras time-defying superman/small forward for details
Erkenwald 75 - Southend Scorpions 65
On Wednesday 16th Nov Barking and Dagenham Erkenwald were at home to Southend Scorpions, two teams that have always been a great match up.
The Erks experience and size against a team that lacks in size but makes up for it in heart and determination to play hard.
Scorpions full squad turned up at 8pm pumped and ready to go as always, while only Frenchy and Uncle "Scarlet" Keith Pringle were the only one's in the gym for the Erks. As true Erks fashion team mates were walking through the door one by one.
Frenchy had his mini speakers playing with the sounds of Eye of the Tiger and Push it to the Limit playing while warming up in his new Ray Allen jersey which appears to be a ritual now, but this seemed to help the Erks 6 man team get in to "The Zone" literally!!
The game tipped off later than expected due to an official being late (In it Becky King!!!)
1st Quarter - The tip off landed in the position of the Erks and with the ball swinging round all team members Frenchy was found deep in the corner to hit a 3 to start off the game and put the first points on the board (Frenchy seeming to come out with the same confidence and determination like he had on Sunday against Saffron Walden were he had one of the best games of his basketball career). Erks seemed to have control early on with Pistol Pete Prazych going hard to the hole and shooting from the line, also Punisher Denchfield adding points to the board. As true Scorpions style they were pushing the ball hard and hustling for every rebound with J-Ward, R-Ghilcher, N-Squires and I-McCann all adding points to the board. But the first quarter was owned by Frenchy hitting three 3s in a row, rebounding put backs and a jump shot inside with Frenchy scoring 13 points in the 1st quarter (someone referred to Frenchy's performance as Ray Allenesq).
Erks 23 - Scorps 16
2nd Quarter - This quarter was a total change to the previous with the Scorps upping their intensity and hustle, adding points quickly and with ease going to the hole cutting through Erks zone with penetrations and dishing off the ball for easy buckets. The Erks were also being punished with lazy passing and fast breaks coming from Scorps A-Wilding aka A2W (Check him out on Youtube, 10% promotion fee Wilding!!) The Erks Martin Overare added the extra help for crashing the boards and also getting himself on the scoreboard. But this quarter was owned by the Scorps.
Erks 10 - Scorps 14.
Half Time!! Erks 33 v Scorps 30
3rd Quarter - With both teams having a 5 minute rest, more needed for the 6 man Erks team with the average age of 35 both teams come out looking to take control of the game and edge towards the win. The scores early on were back and fourth with both teams attacking the hole, rebounding and intense play. J-Lee had stepped up big for the Erks with some great screens and rebounding. While for the Scorps I-McCann and N-Squires both taking turns to score and the odd basket coming from A2W. Frenchy entered half way through the quarter but quickly being subbed off after receiving an elbow from his very own team mate Overare possibly breaking his nose (but the pure determination of Frenchy showed by him just stuffing some tissue up his nose to stop the bleeding so he could continue to play on). The 3rd quarter was totally owned to the Punisher dropping 3s at will but not to mention Uncle Keith going hard to the hole, hitting jump shots and distributing the ball like poetry in motion. This quarter was won by the Scorps because of their pure hustle and non-stop running. Erks 21 - Scorps 24
4th Quarter - Going into this quarter 54 - 54, this game was anyone's to win. Both teams deserved the win, with the Scorps lacking in size but still managing to grab rebounds and penetrate the Erks inside, also their hustle and pushing of the ball kept the Erks on the back foot at times. But Erks smart play, solid zone (at times) and each team member "knowing their role" stepping up and keeping the game tight. Uncle Keith came out as if he was 20 years younger taking complete control of the game even with Scorps full court press to try and keep the ball out of his hands, of which they failed to do so. Pringle controlled every play and even giving the Scorps a lesson in taking the ball to the hole and earning his way to the line. The Punisher Denchfield and Pistol Pete Prazych both contributing with points and rebounds. Frenchy continuing to play like Ray Allen adding points inside and out of the arch. But this quarter was owned by Big J-Lee with his crashing of the boards and even adding points to the scoreboard. The Erks had managed to run away with the lead winning this quarter. Erks 21 - Scorps 11.
Final Score: Erks 75 v Scorps 65
Erks are currently 9 wins and 0 losses #Undefeated
As always this was a great game between both teams pure intensity, hustle and some beautiful basketball being played.
MVP - Most Valuable Player as voted for by the sponsors of Dave's Dagenham Tyres - Frenchy
Erks: Frenchy - 18, Denchfield - 18, Prazych - 16, Pringle - 15, Overare - 4, J-Lee - 4
Scorps: I-McCann - 25, N-Squires - 14, A-Wilding - 11, J-Ward - 8, R-Ghilcher - 5, J-Squires - 2
Also a special thanks to Paul Squires true Grizzlies fan (probably the only one in the UK) true Legend!!
Saffron Walden 62 - Erkenwald 77
Buoyed by an unbeaten start to the season predominantly against the mid-table and lower ranked sides, the 2011/12 Erks came through their first real test with flying colours away at Saffron Walden. After a rugged opening quarter in which Dave Churches was instrumental in both sides scoring just 25 points, protecting the rim at one end, whilst chipping paint off it at the other, the Erks pulled away with their best 20 minutes of basketball this season in the 2nd & 3rd periods.
The second foul on the Stealers centre Dexter late in the first quarter was the catalyst for the first surge as his absence allowed the Erks to make the most of their size and matchup advantages in the second quarter. Pete Prazych and Val Nadja in particular exploiting being guarded by smaller or slower opponents by taking the ball to basket at every opportunity. Prazych went repeatedly to his staple 'drive right then spin left move' against his ageing opponent, racking up 8 quick points and Nadja matched the Pole blowing by his man to lay the ball in several times.
It's early stages yet, but Val appears to have avoided the Erks usual tactic for nicknaming European colleagues (Polish Pete, Italian Dave..) by virtue of having a girls name. However if he ever ventures down to Deanes to meet the Erks Ladies, he will undoubtedly go there as French Val.
The first half ended with the Erks holding a 36-25 advantage and after just 3 minutes of the third, the Dagenham side had blown the game open at 52-31. The catalyst for the decisive move was 5'9 guard Robin French, who to the surprise of his coach took the opening shot of the quarter from at least 6 feet outside the three point arc, although fortunately before Keith could signal for a sub, the ball swished through. French then nailed his next two shots, both from beyond the arc and within the flow of the offense, to demoralise the opposition, who quickly called timeout. However with Nadja and Keith Pringle also finding their range, the lead hit 20 and that pretty much was that.
The Erks did have to survive a furious fourth quarter effort from the Stealers, who finally hit a couple of outside shots and crashed the boards with reckless abandon, however a costly technical foul stalled their momentum and Pringle and Prazych found some key baskets to relieve the pressure so that when Mark Denchfield and then Dave Churches knocked down late treys, the game was up.
French managed to foul out in the 4th quarter in order to get his three trey burst onto social media as soon as possible, however vital though his contribution was, the man of the match was the 45 year old Pringle, who played the full 40 minutes under full court pressure, hardly missed a shot and kept the team ticking over all night.
Erks scorers: Pringle 20, Nadja 16, Prazych 14, French 11, Denchfield 9, Overare 4, Churches 3
Erks 81 Lakers 46
Eastside Eagles Div 2 National League team's trip home from a win up against Birmingham had turned into some pretty intense talk from a not so musclely guard "Phil Chittock" about how he claimed to be better than Erkenwald's very own Guard, Robin French. Not only that but he claimed he would give French "The Business" and shut him down completely. A feat that some of the top defensive players in the South East of England even have trouble with, but some how this delusional Chittock said he could contain French.... When French had heard this ridiculous talk, he kept quiet and decided to show Chittock "The Recession to his Business".
The Erks hosted the Lakers (Not LA Lakers) on Wednesday night with the entire Lakers team turning up 45 minutes early to make sure they had a good warm up as there was rumors they thought they could beat the reigning champions, but only to be let in the gym 10 minutes before tip off.....
The Erks team seemed to be walking through warm up as if they had already won the game; Coach McCusker quickly took that idea away and reminded us of our last few games that with that attitude we would possibly loose this game.
The Erks first quarter starting five was K Pringle, M Denchfield, D Church, P Prazych and R French. The Lakers starting five was P Campbell, C Mark, V Gold, A Mwitwa and C Waugh which meant that P Chittock was still on the bench, which was weird for someone who was "meant" to be so good?!!?........
The game tipped off none the less with the ball going straight to French for a quick lay-up for the 2 points. The Erks were playing some great team basketball Offensively and Defensively, the ball movement and off the ball movement showed why Erks were Champions dominating from the start. All starting five players for the Erks were putting points on the board and "Turbo" little guard S Sanghera came off the bench to contribute with points on the board. The Erks took an early lead to close out the first quarter with 29 points to the Lakers 16.
Coach McCusker's team talk was to keep the Erks motivated and told them to keep playing the basketball they were playing at both ends of the court.
Start of the second quarter Chittock had finally stepped onto the court and was guarding Erks French and French was guarding Chittock (but postgame reports from French said that "it felt like no one was guarding me"). Although Chittock was on the floor he might as well of sat down as he his stats alone in the second quarter were 3 Turnovers, 4 Airballs, and 2 Missed Lay-ups. Not great stats for someone who was "meant" to be handing out the Business!!! The Erks had continued where they had left off, with Vintage Pete and Overare both racking up 10 points between them in the first few minutes. With Erks playing great defence and smart offence they had run away with a half time score of, Erks 59 – Lakers 29.
The halftime talk was near on the same as before, just to keep playing smart basketball otherwise it could end up a "scrappy old game".
With this clearly going in one ear and out the other, the Erks entered the third quarter which did turn into "that load of old b*llocks" as Coach McCusker famously always refers to. But reason for this "load of old b*llocks" happening was due to Lakers own E Enwerem being entered in to the game.... If ever there was a player who could change the tempo of a game Enwerem was that player!! The most unorthodox, uncoordinated, unusual basketball player to touch a basketball. To sum things up on how he changed the game the Lakers had drew the third quarter with the Champs 11 a piece the score being 60-40 to the Erks.
With Coach McCusker frantically pointing out that as Enwerem was singed to also play for the Erks in the Essex League that he was without question THE WORST player ever to put on an Erks vest which was a bold statement as there were a few players in great contention for this title, but the Erks had agreed with Coach after an intense discussion that Enwerem was and probably will be THE WORST ever player to put on an Erks Jersey!!
As the fourth quarter started Lakers Chittock and Enwerem were on the court and with Chittock still SCORELESS he was hoping to redeem himself from so many turnovers and missed lay ups. Enwerem had continued to astonish not only the Erks but his own team with putting a 3 only to be an airball, but then somehow getting hold of the ball to do the exact same again. This securing Enwerem, as THE WORST PLAYER to ever wear an Erks vest. With Chittock still trying to redeem himself, he was trying to step up his defence on French. But although he tried French had drained a three in his eye from deep with shouts even coming from the Lakers bench "play some defence"! Erks Turbo Sanghera was also putting on a performance with making long shots at will.
With Erks closing out the fourth quarter to a comfortable win over Walthamstow Lakers the final score was: Erks 81 - Lakers 46
Lakers Phil Chittock scored only 1 point... Welcome to the Erks Recession!!!!
Denchfield's play of the day: Chittock had some how got a loose ball and headed for the Erks basket but French had tracked back, with Chittock going up for a layup. French had got his hand on the ball in mid-air and pulled Chittock back down with the ball.... French showing his pure strength over Chittock. Shouts from the Erks bench were telling Chittock to hit the gym and get some muscle on them bones of his. "French show him your biceps"!!!!
Erks Scorers: The Punisher (Denchfield) 23, Vintage Pistol Pete 18, Dave GarbageTime Churches 9, Turbo Shak 9, The Recession (French) 8, Scarlett (Uncle Keith) 8, Overare 4, Trigger (L Atkinson) 2
Erks 88 Lithuanian Tigers 56
On Wednesday night the Erks hosted the EMBL leaders "Tigers" who were undefeated half way through the season. I am not sure if this is a club record for Tigers but very likely, something was just not right leading up to this point and there was a lot of speculation among the Erks team in the run up to this game. As the Tigers had defeated top title contenders like Stars.... There were rumors of Tigers recruiting some real tigers, or the Boston Celtics and even rumored they managed to get Michael Jordan out of retirement. But all was revealed as the team started to walk through the Castle Green Centre doors, it was some of Lithuania's finest Division 13 team.
As this was no ordinary Tigers (L-Igers) team, coach McCusker's pre-game talk was intense and the Erk's were warned we may have to actually play some defence against the Tigers at which point the 50 year veteran Church almost collapsed.
The game tipped off and L-Igers took the first bucket and also as we suspected some early fouls from the L-Igers, as in previous games against the Lithuanians fouls were very common resulting in some of the players being banned from English Basketball forcing the Lithuanians to start off their own league as 2/3rds of their players were banned. The Erks were slow to start as most of our games are, it was buckets consecutively at both ends of the court with some sloppy rebounding from the Erks allowing the L-Igers to get some easy buckets (French scoring the final bucket of the quarter a tough inside lay-up with 2 of the Lithuanian Division 13 players hanging on him). The sloppy first quarter ended 15 a piece which must be another club record for the Tigers to be tied with the Champions Erkenwald in the first quarter. So maybe the Erks were really in for a game on this cold and dark Wednesday evening.
In the team talk Coach McCusker was urging his Erks to box out and grab some rebounds instead of letting the L-Igers #7 (who didn’t score a single point on Lee Atkinson at all! Seriously!!) who was probably the oldest player in the league, getting some easy put back buckets. With this noted the Erks started the second quarter with rebounding firmly lodged in the back of their mind. The Erks quickly put some points on the score board with Uncle Keith getting the ball inside to Church and Vintage Pete. Church looking like he was playing for his dinner scored a lifetime record of 11 points in the second quarter alone. This gave the Erks a half time lead of 42 - 23 holding the L-Igers to only 8 points in the quarter which is definitely not a new record for the Tigers.
The half time talk by Coach McCusker was mainly pointing out that the #21 Division 13 Lithuanian player has the worst shot in the country, so to let him shoot as he was 0 for 27 in the first half.
The third quarter was pretty much a repeat of the second scoring wise, but with the Punisher Denchfield going bananas dropping 5 treys in the third, gently joined by French's 1 trey. Church, Vintage Pete and Uncle Keith also continued to put points on the board through-out the quarter. But also something that no player, coach, official, spectator even Lithuanian could understand was with 4 seconds into the 24 seconds shooting rule French had dribbled the ball out of bounds near the half way line for no apparent reason, it was rumored he saw a £50 note on the floor but in actual fact it was 500 Lithuanian Litas which actually are worthless so a dumb move on French's part. The last time a useless move like this was made was when Church did some fading away, falling backwards type jump shot at Scorpions last season which culminated in him sitting on the bench for half hour!!
The third quarter ended 71 - 33 to the the Champions!!
The fourth quarter started with French obviously sitting on the bench... The freakishly turbo little guy Shak got himself on the scoreboard. Church, Vintage and The Punisher also helped close out the fourth, but French also got back on the floor as Coach McCusker realized it was not the dumbest move by an Erks player allowing French to get some more points on the scoreboard in the fourth. Closing the game Erks 88 - L-Igers 56, which is very near to the usual result in a game between these two teams. So even recruiting the Division 13 Lithuanian players doesn't help them towards a long awaited win over the Erks and a title in the EMBL.
Erks scorers: Denchfield 25, Church 22, Vintage Pete 16, Uncle Keith Pringle 15, French 8, Shak 2.
Seasons Greetings from Erks
Erks hope everyone enjoys the festive period and has a prosperous 2011!
Lakers 61 - Erks 85
Last night the Erks (well half of Erks) travelled down to Rushcroft Centre to face a fresh faced younger than usual Lakers team.
The night started with French turning up an hour early, eager to get back playing basketball after a long injury had seen him out for the start of the season. As eager as French was he had even swept the gym floor prior to any other team member turning up (even the home team) as there had been a cattle market going on in the hall by the look of it.
The Erks were very light on numbers with on 6 available, other Erks players were unable to play apparently due to snow blocking their door step and some not able to find a support band for a Hamstring strain, but the Asst Coach Eni was away on holiday (coaching course) to Trinidad and Tobago.
The game finally tipped off with both teams playing very scrappy basketball early on, with turn over's and fouls mainly on French's part which earned him an early bench ride after picking up 2 fouls in 2 minutes. Uncle Keith and Polish Pistol Pete were the only Erk's to put points on the board in the first quarter. There was some confusion with regards to the table horn and the music playing near the Erk's bench, we later discovered it was appreciation week of our Polish players and Polish Pistol Pete had bought along his own horn made out of the Big Foots Leg Bone and the music was the Polish anthem. The first quarter finished 8 - 10.
The second quarter started off with Pete coming out knocking down two inside off the spin jumpers (clearly the Polish Anthem had given him a boost). Shak and French both were entered into the game and with French making his way through the lane to earn him a quick two points from free throws. By this time it seemed Church had finally warmed up as he turned up 3 minutes before tip-off, Church managed to get himself on the score sheet from inside. With Lakers oddly slowing the ball down but then somehow managing to go through the entire Erks team and scoring easy buckets at will, it took a time out from Coach McCusker to tell his squad to play some defence, because if Erks carried on the way we were playing the game could have been a close win instead of a total wipeout win. Polish Pistol Pete and Uncle Keith again dominated the numbers on the scoreboard in the second quarter ending 23 - 33.
After a pretty intense half time talk from Coach McCusker the Erks seemed to come out a not so young fresh faced team looking to close out the game. It started off with French knocking down 4 3's in a row, with shouts coming from the bench of "French spot up".... but then the Lakers then went for an average team height of about 5ft 10", this made Church and Pete's eyes light up! With a quick time out and Coach McCusker pointing out the obvious of getting the ball inside to Church and Polish Pistol Pete to clear up. Church was fed the ball on numerous occasions and putting up inside shots with Lakers players hanging off his arms, legs and vest. But then still complaining that he does not get a foul call. After nearly 50 years of playing the game you would of thought Church would of learned not to moan to the Ref's about not getting a foul call as his freakish size the ref's won't call it. The third quarter scoreboard was dominated by French and Church ending 44 - 57.
The fourth quarter started with an energetic Shak Attack with some nice full court runs, passes and jump shots. Shak was also taking a beating from the Lakers team by being doubled teamed and sent flying across the gym floor. But the Erks managed to finally pull away with a significant lead with nearly all Erks players getting on the score sheet in the fourth quarter to close out the game with Erks winning 61 - 85.
Erks scorers: Keith Pringle 24, Robin French 22, Pete Prazych 21, Dave Church 13, Shak Sanghera 5
Message from Terry Harris' daughter
To all at Erkenwald Basketball club,
Thank you all for the wonderful tributes sent to my father, Terry Harris. It was wonderful to see both old and new faces, take the time to pay tribute to him. Basketball has been a major part of my family's life for so long, with both my dad and dear uncle Ern seemingly so enveloped in it. I remember the club in its humblest of beginnings at the Erkenwald school where you had to keep your wits about or risk being hit in the face by the ball as you sat as a spectator on those low benches. I remember the pounding of the ground as the herd of men swept past me. The cries of 'Ref, are you blind?' and 'how'd you like your taters cooked' and many a tussle. As a young girl I never really understood what the fuss was all about. A group of sweaty, red faced men running up and down chasing a ball and trying to get it through the hoop seemed far less interesting than the books my parents had brought to distract me. In fact, the best bit was the end of the game when I too could run about and attempt to throw that incredibly heavy ball through the hoop myself. I always missed, however, and it quickly lost its charm.
But on Wednesday, I think I finally got what it was all about. The love for my dad that was expressed at the service was truly overwhelming. The bonds created by being involved in a simple sport, breaking through the walls of death and pulling people I've not met for years to my dad's side. To me, he was my dad and the cornerstone of my world, but the tributes paid show me how important he was to others too. He was not rich and famous, never the best dressed or even one to arrive on time but through simple, gentle ways he has affected the lives of other for the better and they came to show their affection and love.
I cannot thank Gary Glennard enough for his most beautiful and fitting Eulogy. I could almost feel my dad's presence in his words. I'm still not sure you're supposed to say the word 'Arse' in a church, but Gal, old Tel would have laughed too. Having said all that, no King or film star was ever sent off in better style. You did my old dad proud.
So in the light of my new understanding, and more importantly, in the fond memory of my much beloved dad and to honour his great love of this sport of basketball and the Erks, I would humbly like to offer to provide a trophy for the club. I would like this to be presented as an award to the person who has tried the hardest that year. I'm not saying it should go to the best player or even the most improved player, just the person who has tried his heart out. Maybe it should go the skinny little kid that stays behind after the game, trying and trying to get his shots through that hoop in emulation of the big men he so admires. What to you think, eh Gal? Anyway, I'm sure you will know who the right person is.
Once again, I thank you for your tributes and I wish your club every success in the future. Here's to a day when everyone plays basketball because, with the camaraderie it creates, I'm sure would make the world a much better place.
Funeral service details
Terry Harris' funeral service will take place on Wednesday, 3rd November at 2.40pm at Southend Crematorium, Sutton Road, Southend on Sea, SS2 5PX.
Erks legend passes away
It is with great sadness to announce that Erkenwald legend Terry Harris passed away on the morning of Thursday 21st October 2010.
Terry was almost a founder member of the ERKS joining just a few short months after its formation in 1947 and was instrumental in its development through to full national league status. As a player, Terry's was an incredible talent and a man truly ahead of his time. His shooting prowess was phenomenal but this was matched in his application and his ability to 'take the rules' to the very edge. Incredible that he was still playing in the first team in his '50's and he would surely be a member of any 'all time Erkenwald team'.
Never one to be selfish, Terry was always looking to pass on his knowledge and experience to players. In later years he remained a supporter of the club and passed away with the picture of him holding the Founders Cup sitting proudly at the foot of his bed.
The word legend is used too often in life but in this example it is a fitting tribute.
Funeral details to be advised. RIP Terry.
Erks 74 - Baddow Eagles 62
Erkenwald went into their 2nd game of the season on a back to back after a big win over their rivals Cardinals the night before. Their opponents Baddow Eagles proved a comfortable fixture in seasons past but this game would seem a lot different than them. Eagles a young energetic team looked to take advantage of an older Erks and maybe a tired Erks. This also saw new recruits Chris Mark, E Ekum making their Erkenwald debut looking for some winners medals come the end of the season.
The Game tipped off in usual fashion with Denchfield having murdered his opposite number the night before with 32points hit his first three 3point shots on his way to a game high 29 points as well as Pringle and Shak Sanghera getting in on the action. However Baddow seemed to be keeping up with the Erks and actually lead after the first quarter 23-18.
Erkenwald looking tired defensively kept plugging away and managed to take the lead in the 2nd quarter behind some strong play from debutant Chris Mark who finished the night with an impressive 19 points. Also E Ekum, Big Jon Lee and Coach McCusker putting in the dirty work coming up with loose balls, rebounds and defensive stops which enabled Erkenwald to lead the half 36-33.
The second half saw that slim lead evaporate as Baddow seemed to break on the Erks at will and took the lead 43-36 and forcing Coach McCusker to call a time out and rally his team. The cry was for defence and a lot more effort on the defensive end and knowing that the Erks possessed far greater fire power it was defence and rebounding that would ultimately allow Erkenwald to pull away. Again the defence of J. Lee and E Ekum as well as S Sanghera saw the Erks pull away with the lead, along with solid guard play from K.Pringle who finished the evening with 10 points and the re-birth of plastic man Martin Overare who finished with 8 points saw the Erks win the third quarter by 6 which thus gave them the lead going into the forth quarter 59-50.
The fourth quarter saw Baddow continue to break with some success but couldn't stop the Erks at the other end who seemed to match baskets and, with Denchfield continuing to score relentlessly together with Chris Mark and Keith Pringle, Erks ran out 74-62 winners. A tougher game than the Erks had expected left Coach McCusker disappointed with the team's effort. But new recruits C. Mark and E. Ekum were smiling from ear to ear just to get that winning feeling. Improvements are needed for Erkenwald to 3peat the Essex league and the upcoming fixtures pose more threats than what was on offer tonight.
Erkenwald: Denchfield 29, Mark 19, Pringle 10, Overare 6, Sanghera 4, Lee 4, McCusker 2, Ekum, Agbolegbe
Eagles: (top 3) Shepherd 20, Huartson 14, Garden 12
Cardinals (13, 27, 36) 46 - Erks (15, 31, 54) 83
Erks opened their defence of the Essex Met title with a hammering of old rivals Cardinals that looked unlikely at half-time when the game was well poised with the visitors holding a 31-27 lead. Both teams were having trouble scoring in the first half in typically scrappy early season encounter, with the majority of Cardinals points coming on second, third or fourth chance baskets as their youthful line-up out-rebounded the Erks by a ratio of approximately 3:1.
Erkenwald's offense was carried by point guard Keith Pringle in the first half as boosted by a strenuous off-season regime, the former Hainault veteran showed that he's lost little of the explosive first step that he used to demonstrate occasionally when not feeding the ball into Tim Lewis or Graham Hill during Hainault's championship years.
Pringle's trademark flat as a pancake jump shot was also hitting the mark however and if Keith's off-season regime was strenuous in pursuit of basketball fitness, the off-season regime of Erks inside duo Pete Prazych and Dave Churches was presumably strenuous in other ways, as they combined for 4 points and 4 quick fouls in a first half that saw Erks coach Declan McCusker going quickly to his bench to avoid his big men fouling out before half time.
Shaq Sangera's six points in the late stages of the 2nd quarter kept Erkenwald's noses in front and with the reserves holding their own, McCusker was able to interrogate Churches on the bench to ensure that the player in front of him was in fact the long time Erks stalwart rusty after a summer of baby-minding and not the Dave Churches impersonator first sighted in a must win game at Portsmouth in 1998, when the Erks' usual 20 points and 12 rebounds from the centre position were replaced by no points and 3 boards.
At half-time, having determined that it was the real Churches in attendance, the Erks stressed defence and rebounding and they were immediately rewarded, as with only one chance to shoot on each trip down the floor, Cardinals managed just 9 points in the third period. At the other end, Prazych was showing signs of life, finding his way to the line a couple of times after a couple of trademark spin moves, but it was the Erks outside shooter Mark Drenchfield who really sprung to life, emerging from Cardinals swingman Seale's pocket to hit three successive treys. By that stage Erks were out to a 54-38 lead and the final quarter saw them really apply the pressure as Cardinals fell apart in the face of a bombardment from Drenchfield.
The shooting guard took his tally to eight second half threes and ten for the game in a virtuoso display of shooting and as the defenders charged out to him, he also played the pick and roll game with Martin Overare feeding the rubber-limbed forward for a succession of double pump layups as Erks ran the margin to 37, Drenchfield looking happier at the end of the game than at any time since Sonia stopped playing the trumpet.
Erks Scorers: Drenchfield 32 (inc. ten 3 pointers), Pringle 18, Overare 11, Prazych 9, Sangera 6, Churches 4, McCusker 2, Agbolegbe 1, Williams
Erks travelled to Caister in Yarmouth for the 18th year in succession for the annual festival of basketball.
Returning from last year were Declan, Keith, Mark (aka Drench), Shakes, Robin, Polish Pete and Sharon James (as scorer). Returning for his first appearance for 4 years was Gary Glennard (joining Keith and Declan as the only players remaining from the original 1993 Erks team that won the tournament). The Erks were joined this season by:
Southend Saint - Darren Hughes (Darren had hoped Southend Saints would have their own team this year but following the humiliation of being thrown out of the Essex Cup for blatant cheating, he decided to join the Erks).
Errol Seaman - formerly of Forest, Eastside, Hainault, London Towers, Manchester Giants, Hackney & Eastbury Tigers.
Marius Poskus - Eastern European comrade of Polish Pete.
Noticeable absentees were Garbage time Dave Churches (not allowed to go to Caister anymore because his girlfriend won't let him). Jonny Lee and Chims were also absent due to "alleged" work and cricket commitments respectively - although Johnny Lee's girlfriend let the cat out of the bag at the recent Essex League play offswhen she told several people that she wouldn't let Jon go either.
Although the dates for Caister were confirmed some six months ago, Pete left it until the day before the tournament to ask his employer if he could leave early on Friday to ensure that he could make the Friday night game. His employer told him to "clear off" meaning that not only was Pete going to miss the Friday night game, but Marius would also miss the game as he was travelling in Pete's car. With Keith already scheduled to miss the Friday night game (due to his Morris dancing Friday evening session), Pete's meticulous planning left his team mates completely bewildered and also facing the first game with 7 players.
The first game up on Friday evening was Bury Bull dogs - a team that Shakes has played for the last two years in the Suffolk league. In an attempt to endorse his own basketball credentials, Shakes tried to "big up, several of the Bury players. However, Shakes' analysis of his team mates proved to be as useful as his non existent rebounding skills as Erks dominated from start to finish behind 17 points a piece from Drench and Errol.
In his post match interview, the coach of Southend Saints (who was at Caister for the "Annual Funny Clothes Wearing Conference" of which he is the Chairman) noted that the Bury players and Erks players must have all known each other for years and years and years - based on the over friendly (if not unfunny and boring) banter given by Bury Players to Erks players. When this was put to Gary, he noted in his usual dismissive manner that "their behaviour drove him mad as their false laughing, joking, brown tongue behaviour was completely disproportionate to how long and how well they knew us" (ie not at all).
Final score: Erks 49 Bury Bull Dogs 23.
Prior to heading back to the camp, a post match enquiry was held in the bar. The enquiry was not in to the Bury game but was in to Darren and the embarrassing expulsion of Southend Saints from the Essex Cup competition. Darren tried to explain that the coach of Southend Saints said that the competition rules were very unclear on the following very clear rule:
"If a player has not played in 50% of the team's league games, the player is not eligible to play in the Cup Semi Final or Cup Final"
Darren's explanation of his coach's comments appeared to be completely inconsistent with the rule which was circulated (in English and in clear words of two syllables or less) to every club in the league. The league had also contacted the coach of Southend Saints on 2 separate occasions warning him not to play any glory hunters that had transferred to Saints in the middle of the season from Southend Players (the current club of ex Erk & Club Debtor Steve Herd). In spite of all this, the aforementioned coach of Southend Saints (who is always subject to spurious post match interviews following Erks/ Saints games) defied the rules (and logic) and the league's clear instructions - hence the humiliating exit from the competition. Darren had no choice but to agree!
On being asked of his current "stinker" status, Robin presented his phone to the team to illustrate his gallery which comprised of numerous "scantily clad" young ladies in compromising positions. Robin beemed with delight whilst his teammates seemed to be impressed with his string of girlfriends until Darren & Mark presented their phones with the same pictures of the same ladies - all downloaded from "bollockystinkers.com". Unlucky Robin - good hand shank material - but that's all…..
Back to the camp where Keith had now arrived and all off to the club for the night's festivities and drinks.
Robin was sporting a psychedelic outfit which included a neck scarf belonging to Declan's mum. Keith's antics lead Gary and Declan to consider replacing Keith's current nick name of "Scarlet" for "Nigel Havers" (for the youngsters out there, Nigel Havers is an actor who starred in a TV serial called "The Charmer" ). The debate continues although it appears likely both nick names will be inter changeable in the future.
The team awoke on Saturday morning to the self appointed cordon bleu chef of the Erks (Robin) exercising his culinary skills with the frying pan. Following the breakfast, they travelled off to the University of East Anglia for an 11am game versus a team called Mash, a team comprising of a few fat blokes who did a lot of shouting and a lot of fouling. With Declan dominating the defensive boards (as noted by Drench) and Robin goal hanging for easy fast break lay ups Erks run out comfortable winners with Robin leading all scorers with 17.
Final score: Erks 56 Mash 26.
Next up was SEAE, a team comprising of young army recruits. Erks raced out to a 21 - 6 lead with Marius, Shakes and Robin all looking particularly hungry against weak opposition. In addition to Shakes scoring four points, he registered his first ever rebound at Caister in over 12 years!
Gary also joined the fold and achieved two blocked shots - being Gary's first block since his infamous block on Garbage Time Dave Churches in the mid Essex play off final in 1994.
Final score: Erks 48 - SEAE 13.
On to the final group game versus Lowestoft Jesters who looked to be the strongest opposition in the group. Mark, Marius and Errol hit the first 15 points for the Erks before Pete added more to take a comprehensive half time league 25-12. The second half was more even with baskets being traded until two pivotal points at the end.
Gary and Declan did the "throwing the ball at each other at the half way line" to Errol's disbelief and disgust causing Errol to shout "what are you doing man?". Pete then went on a single scoring spree of 8 points in the final 20 seconds which was reminiscent of Garbage Time Dave Churches performance at Hull in 2000 (the vintage performance in which the oaf earned his nickname).
Final score: Erks 50 - Lowestoft Jesters 35.
Erks Ladies & the sleeping referee
The final Erks game of the day was the Erks Ladies who had to beat Colchester Tigers to progress to the next round. Referee Roger Bachus had obviously been subject to the electric fencing normally associated with restricting cattle movement - as he was unable (and unwilling) to move more than 5 feet from one of the baskets for the entire 1st half and most of the 2nd. With Erks trailing by 15 and the whistle hardly being blown for the entire game, Roger suddenly awoke to witness (and unbelievedly call) a foul some 60 yards away. Samantha Jones politely and quietly noted her surprise at this call by commenting "that's really bad" to her fellow teammates. Following Roger's eyesight coming back to life, his hearing followed suit and Roger then sprang to life, leap frogged the electric cattle fence and charged to the scorers' table venomously signalling a technical foul on Sam.
Unfortunately for the Erks Ladies, there was no way back and they bowed out at the group stage.
Everyone headed back to the camp where Mark nabbed 40 winks - unbeknown to him that when he awoke, one of his ears would be full of toothpaste.
Off to the club for the Saturday night where Marius showed everyone how Lithuanian basketball players act once they have consumed copious amounts of vodka. He paraded around lifting anyone and everyone up in the air. Clarification of this bizarre behaviour was sought from Marious's eastern European counterpart (Pete) who calmly explained that this was quite normal behaviour in nightclubs in the suburbs of Warsaw & Vilnius.
The drunken condition of the author of this article means that further events which may have been witnessed on the Saturday night have all became a blur and, in order to avoid being sued, no further reporting on Saturday night can be made.
Marius arrived back at HQ at 6am, claiming he had no idea where he had been. Rumours began to surface that there was strong Eastern European interest in Caister Castle (see the 2009 Caister Report for comparable Eastern European references) and that this is where Maruis had been.
Maruis then proceeded to bench press Darren. Clarification was once more sought from Pete who, once again, confirmed this is quite normal in Warsaw & Vilnius.
Pete announced in the morning that Marius had got into Pete's bed with him at 7am. It is still unclear whether this was to discuss Caister Castle - or whether there was an alternative agenda (please see Pete and/or Marius for further details).
Erks drew Baddow Eagles for what appeared to be an all Essex quarter final. However, Baddow turned up with stockings, spider man clothing and numerous other items of completely unfunny northern type attire hoping to detract attention from the inevitable spanking they were just about to incur. Erks went to the half leading 34 - 8 - but not before Robin had left the court sporting a nice shiner picked up in a melee under the basket. Following Errol's missed dunk, Darren showed him how it was done with a thunderous slam which drove the crowd of 6 absolutely wild.. Declan and Gary did the slowest fast break on record - which was recorded at 23.8 seconds (just avoiding a 24 second violation). Another round of "throwing the ball at each other at the half way line" followed by Declan and Gary which was met with a somewhat warmer response from Errol. However, early indications that Errol will participate in "1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1" defence or "one and box" (the infamous Erks reversal of "box and one") are not looking good at the time of going to print.
Final score: Erks 65 Northern Baddow Eagles 18
On to the semi which was a repeat of last year's for Erks up, once again, against Old Skool Ballers - a team comprising numerous ex BBL & D1 players. With a much stronger team, the omens were looking good for the Erks but some easy baskets for the opposition and some solid defence gave Old Skool a 28 - 18 half time lead. Keith could find no way through, Mark couldn't get open and the main scoring threats came from Marius and Errol with some strong inside play on their way to 10 points each. Pete was the only other real scoring threat and Erks were soundly beaten by the competition's winners for the second year running.
Final score: Erks 35 Old Skool Ballers 52
The traditional goodbyes of the Erks players - which is usually comprised of handshakes and hugs - was somewhat bizzare this year as Gary wanted to leave asap and get back to see his beloved Spurs crash 4 - 2 to relegated Burnley. Instead of the usual hugs, etc in the bar, it now all took place in the changing rooms where Errol, Keith & Pete were still in the shower and Robin & Darren were practically naked having just got out of the shower. Neutral spectators of the naked, partially naked and fully clothed Erks shaking hands and hugging - quickly relayed this news to Brightlingsea who were just losing the final to Old Skool. Brightlingsea (who once again had recruited several ringers in their obsession to win Caister) quickly seized the opportunity of deflecting the attention away from yet another disappointing Caister campaign by immediately spreading the rumour that Erks are "benders".
Erks lawyers, led by their own in house lawyer Keith Pringle, swung quickly into action to dispel such rumours. They quickly obtained witness statements from Erks female companions from Casiter's yesteryears - including Piano, Flaming Red, Flaming Red's sister, Soaking Wet Face, 20p, Biffa, Honey Monster, Beetroot, Beetroot's Sister and, finally, the lady behind the counter at Waverney who cooked the hamburgers - in order to counter these false allegations. The homo sapien status of the Erks men was once again confirmed - even if the choice of female companions was called into question.
Church's offer of obtaining a statement from the "Adams Apple Bird" was kindly declined on the basis that it would probably strenghten Brightlinsea's claims!!
Erks 2010 Caister Squad (in shirt number order)
- (4) Declan McCusker - 18th Caister in a row - will he make it to 20? Behaviour somewhat muted compared to the 1990's but refered to to as "legend" twice over the weekend…
- (5) Mark Denchfield (aka Drench) - Erks 3 point king - 4th Caister for Mark but still seeking a winner's medal. Still has toothpaste in his left ear.
- (7) Robin French - Gordon Ramsey in waiting - but not if Declan's Mum catches him first to retrieve her scarf. Solid performances in every game.
- (8) Gary Glennard - former Caister MVP - assumed the coaching role but still rolled back the years to get a few blocks, numerous assists and the customary "nutmeg" against Baddow.
- (9) Polish Pete - Mrs McCusker (that's Declan's wife - not his Mum) thinks he is handsome - yet to turn this into form at the nightclub. Needs to stop thinking about Caister Castle which has become an obsession. Also, needs to book Friday off work for subsequent Caister tournaments.
- (10) Maruis Poskus - key find for the Erks - too much Vodka and romping with Pete meant the MVP and winner's medal will have to wait.
- (11) Nigel Havers/Keith Pringle - another solid season and Caister for the 40 year old. Former Caister MVP and current mid Essex playoff MVP. Still owes Erks £85 from Caister 1996.
- (13) Darren Hughes - great guy, great addition to the Caister squad - needs to learn how to ski with his eyes closed (please see Errol for further details)
- (14) Shakes - still the worst rebounder in Erks history but Caister would not be Caister without this Erks legend (and also legend of Bury, West Herts, Ware, Colchester & The Navy)
- (15) Errol Seaman - awesome player, came up big when it mattered. Best play of the tournament - Darren's ski accident (please see Darren for further details).
A big mention also to Sharon James who has been to more Caister with Erks than most of the above players. And the "Erks Ladies" - superstar players, superstar supporters and better looking than the Erks men.
Erks Dominate Essex Basketball.
Erkenwald Basketball Club achieved a hard earned clean-sweep of this season's competitions with a closely fought Play-off win against Brightlingsea Sledgehammers on Monday.
Having already won the Essex Met League, Essex Met League Play-offs, Mid-Essex League and Mid-Essex Cup, the Erks only needed to triumph in the Mid-Essex Play-off final to cap a very satisfactory season. Erks had already beaten their opponents in last week's Cup final, but Sledgehammers returned with a full-strength team, to try and reclaim their Play-off trophy from last year. The Erks who had had various minor contributions from fringe players throughout the season, turned up with their 9 diehards - totalling not far off 180 years of Erkenwald experience... Even the semi-retired Rella turned up, sniffing a chance to make up the 10. Unfortunately, Rella was swiftly directed to Rule 7.6b(ii) subsection 3, paragraph H of the legitimacy of players during cup games and play-offs. The same rule that saw Southend Saints unceremoniously expelled from the Cup competition for blatant cheating by giving any glory hunter a chance to play, by switching teams 90% through the season. Leaving Southend Players I can understand. To go and play for Saints with that coach, I cannot...
Anyway, back to the final.... The first quarter started pretty much where the cup-final left off last week. Baskets were being traded and with Sledgehammers breaking at every chance. A few lapses in concentration from the Erks saw their opponents go on two mini runs. Only the timely intervention of some Drenchfield treys kept the score respectable with Sledgehammers taking a 10 point lead by the end of the quarter. (26-16)
The second quarter couldn't have been more even, with it ending 21 apiece, leaving the Erks 10 down at the half. The only consolation for the Erks was that they were still to find their feet and far from playing their best basketball. (47 - 37)
It was during the half time break that Jonny Lee took the opportunity to accost Coach McCusker in the gents, suggesting a revised team, which did include his ample self... The Coach, not to be phased, clearly disregarded this lobbying for court time, by a) putting himself on instead and b) benching JL for the whole of the third quarter... The other noticeable event of the half time period was the three minute call by Ref X, as after further analysis, it was proven that this was the only correct call they gave all game...
The third quarter got underway with the Erks revitalised and eager to cut into the 10 point deficit. Unfortunately they could only do this by 1 point, as their lapses in concentration and self-discipline continued, allowing Sledgehammers to keep ahead whenever the Erks started looking good. The end of the third quarter saw the Erks down by 9, but still with the belief that it could be turned around. (65-56)
It was at this moment that Coach McCusker realised he had no choice now but to listen to Jonny Lee's reasoning and so on he went in place of Frenchy. With the defence now being tidied up, with both JL and Garbage filling the key and the three guards keeping their opponents honest, Erks clawed 5 points back straight away, with Keith 'MVP' Pringle getting his second wind, hitting two from two from the free throw line and then sinking a big three. Sledgehammers responded with 5 points of their own, but it was clear that the momentum had shifted in the Erks favour. Up stepped Garbage with a move inside and a three from the corner. This sandwiched two more free throws to KP. Drenchfield and Joe Matthews then traded baskets, before yet another two free throws from KP tied the scores. Then followed the move of the game. Orchestrated from the bench, Drench had the ball. "Use Jonny Lee" came the call from McCusker. "Where is he?" came the desperate cry from Drench. "I'm here" replied the calm, dulcet tones of JL, before a quick one-two round an oafish screen, saw Drench swish the sweetest of his 4 threes of the game. Erks had taken the lead for the first time since the 5th minute... Into the final minute and Jules scored to reduce the Erks lead to 1. Some steady possession from the Erks saw the clock run down, before KP was again fouled and sent to the line, calmly hitting them both, taking his tally to 10 from 10 for the game. Still the game was not over, as Sledgehammers had one final roll of the dice, taking a three to tie the scores with 2 seconds remaining. It rimmed out, leaving JL to rip the rebound down before being fouled. JL to the line with 1 second to go. Sledgehammers hugely relieved that it wasn't KP going to the line, quickly worked out a nutty inbound move, anticipating an airball and a chance to still draw the game. Unfortunately for them JL was cool as you like, slotting the first one home and then missing the second (as per the coach's instructions). The Erks winning by four... (78-74)
Erks scorers - Garbage 23, Keith 23, Mark 18, Pete 9, Jonny Lee 3, Martin 2, McCusker, Atkinson and French.
*** Correction. The above rule is incorrect and should be 'subsection H, paragraph 3'. The above rule actually relates to the amount of tubigrip, neoprene and sweatbands allowed per player, per skin covering percentage. Something we have to check Mark for prior to each game...
Erkenwald 78 Brightlingsea 74
Erks added the playoff shield to the Essex League and Cup titles - in addition to the Essex Metropolitan League and Playoff titles - to gain a clean sweep of all 5 senior Essex Basketball titles for 2009/2010.
Keith obtained the finals "MVP" and is believed to be the oldest winner of this accolade. Whilst Declan picked up the league trophy - 20 years after winning it as a player in 1990 - which is also believed to be the biggest "years" spread of winners medals as a player and coach.
Erkenwald 91 Brightlingsea 81
Erks gained revenge on their Cup Final tormentors from last year with a less than convincing win over an understrength Brightlingsea, by a flattering 10 point margin.
Hammers only turned up with 6 players, with ex Erk and non-club debtor Femi Ariyo having done the London Marathon in the morning and clearly showing no concept of commitment by wandering along mid-game and not taking part...
Nonetheless, a full strength Erks Team scored the first basket with a Polish Pete three-pointer. Baskets were traded early on and with Hammers breaking at every opportunity, the scores were a close 24 - 20 to the Erks at the end of the first quarter. The big men of Pistol Pete and Garbage Churches, using their height advantage. The highlight of the first quarter was a "tough drive to the basket" by coach McCusker - said coach McCusker...
Much the same followed in the second quarter with Hammers having to rotate their 'bench' due to their short numbers and Erks rotating their bench through foul trouble caused by the excess of wishy-washy, namby-pamby calls by the refs. Even Old Boy Atkinson managed to hit a three-pointer. Every Erk and past opponent knows this clearly isn't true as Lee bleeds out of his nose and ears if he even lines up to shoot outside of the the three-point line. However, the scoresheet proved medical science wrong... Hammers won the second quarter by two to leave them two down at the half.
The third quarter saw veteran Erk Keith Pringle step it up a gear and Post-up Pete also showed some nice touches. However, despite these two playing some strong offence, the Erks defence was often found wandering... With the Erks dominating play at times, they failed to pull significantly away and with the help of a Joe Matthews technical, Erks managed to ease past the Hammers by four points in the third quarter. Noticeable in the third quarter was the arrival of Handbags Pete who in between his strong moves, also showed plenty of 'hold me back' moves often associated with 17 year olds at kicking out time in village pubs...
Erks managed to keep their heads above water - just, and finally managed to hold on for the win, with the final score 91-81. Hotshot Pete leading the Erks scorers with nicknames and points. Can't help but think that the 'rematch' next Monday will be a little more hotly contested.
Erks scorers - Pete 31, Keith 23, Mark 12, Garbage 11, French 8, Atkinson 3, McCusker 2 and Overare. Jonny Lee was there as the official reporter.
Erkenwald 90 Cardinals 69
Erkenwald ventured to Waltham Abbey on a sunny Sunday afternoon looking to secure the Essex Metropolitan Finals to go along with the League honours. They faced thier old rivals Cardinals looking to avenge last seasons playoff defeat. The Erks were at full strength and started the game strong behind Sharp shooter Mark Denchfield draining a 3 as well as Vintage Pete and point guard Keith Pringle getting on the score sheet early to rack up a 10 point lead to start the game. Cardinals then began to get into the occasion with some strong play from young forward Jon Hinds and vetran Marvin Willson as well as their point guard Molner who hit back to back 3 pointers to bring them back within 2.
Second quarter saw Cardinals amp up the intensity and desire which Erks matched and saw each team trade points with Erks holding onto their lead throughout the half. Strong play from Piotr Prazych who had encountered some foul trouble, a tough baseline shot from Atkinson and 5 points from Robin French ensured Erks went into the half holding onto a 3 point lead. Key to the lead was both big defensive contributions from Dave Churches and Jon Lee who also were controlling the boards while Keith Pringle was keeping the offence well oiled even though he was struggling with grip on the slippery court. A new pair of Jordan V's were placed on order shortly after.
The third quarter began with Coach McCusker asking for more effort in recognising who is the Cardinals key scorers and ensuring they were to be kept as quiet as possible. It started well as Denchfield hit back to back 3 pointers but Cardinal's Seal, Molner and Hinds stepped up to give Cardinals there first lead of the game at 52-48 and caused Coach McCusker to call a time out to address the problems these players were causing as well as getting the Erks offence going. Up stepped Pringle and Prazych who had the Erks next 15 points to keep the game tied and the momentum in the balance. All seemed well until Cardinals seemed to then gain momentum with a rare technical foul on Denchfield as well as some fast break points off of turnovers had Erks needing to dig deep to ensure the game didn't get to far out of hand. Cardinals were finding success through Molner and him creating easy opportunities for his team mates Willson, Hinds and Gooden (no relations to NBA's Drew Gooden) which gave themselves an 8 point advantage.
The fourth quarter saw coach McCusker draw up a defensive masterpiece of a box and 1 defence with the energetic Robin French assigned to shadow Molner to keep the ball out of his hands. This worked as well as hoped as the Erks seemed to gain control and momentum at the key point where the game was ultimatly going to be decided.
With Jon Lee and Churches adding their presence inside and Pringle and Denchfield outside the Cardinals offence started to slow down. Along came the pivotal moment when Denchfield grabbing an offensive rebound from a wayward Prazych shot was fouled on the play to gain 2 free throws. Seal to his amazment protested and was duely given a technical foul for his efforts. This along with his frustrations at getting torched by his opposite numer then seemed to lose his marbles and his jersey as he stomped around the court continuing to swear and protest his frustration and apparant innocence. This then led to another technical giving Denchfield 6 free throws in a row which he duely dispatched cooly taking his tally to 29 and giving Erkenwald an 8 point gap and possession which resulted in Robin French hitting one of his two 3 pointers of the game.
The Cardinals, with time running out on their trophyless season, became desperate in their offence which then lead to easy scores for Denchfield, Pringle, Prazych and Overare. The lead ballooned to 18 points with Pringle adding 3 more to his game total of 16 to add salt to the wound. Each player contributed to the win and League success which saw Erkenwald crowned Essex Metropolitan League and Playoff Champions for 2010.
DENCHFIELD - 31, PRAZYCH - 27, PRINGLE - 16, FRENCH - 8, CHURCHES - 4, LEE - 2, ATKINSON - 2, McCUSKER, OVERARE
MOLNER - 18, WILLSON - 15, SEALE - 14, HINDS - 10, GOODEN - 8, LEE - 2, OKWEI-NORTEY - 2, GABRIEL, ANDREW, ORELLO, DUPUIS
Erks face Cardinals in Play Off final on Sunday 11th
Erks will play Cardinals on Sunday in the EMBL Play Off final. The game takes place at Waltham Abbey Sports Centre (EN9 1LF).
Tip off is 13:00.
Erks 91 Lakers 52
On Tuesday Night Erks took on the WALTHAM ABBEY Lakers which proved to be a scrappy game as always and I dont mean Scrappy as in Scrappy Doo!.....
The Erks started with the usual Coach McCusker speech about how Erks should play simple basketball, not get involved in that "load of old B*ll*cks scrappy game" that the Lakers play but play to our advantages (i.e. inside game and shooting) however Erks went out in the first quarter and ignored all of this!!!
Denchfield started the game off with a quick trey followed by Pistol Pete dropping his fancy footwork inside for the bucket. After this the game would be back and fourth but with the Lakers some how winning every offensive rebound while Church, Pringle and Pete were standing under the basket having a chat about who would score Erks next basket.
But before the first quarter was out, French decided to take the game into his own hands with a few strong rebounds (despite being the Erk's smallest player on the floor) and also scoring two lay ups to get himself started on the score sheet. The first quarter ended Erks 17 - Lakers 10.
The second quarter started again with a Coach McCusker speech about how Lakers were winning every offensive rebound and how Erks were involved in that load of old B*ll*cks and that if Erks continued like this, instead of cruising to the Playoff Finals, Erks would be down to the wire and possibly missing out on the Essex Met Playoffs.
With this clearly going in one ear and out the other, the Erks continued that load of B*ll*cks with not rebounding, taking bad shots and bad defence. allowing the Lakers to get them selves back into the game. It took Coach McCusker to step on the floor and take charge on the game, he showed Church, J-Lee and Pistol Pete how to rebound with a few strong offensive and defensive rebounds. He then rolled back approximately 30 years to show Pringle how to "Slice The Lakers Defence, Like A Hot Knife Through Butter" with scoring a lay up through three dazzled Lakers players.
Denchfield was taken out of the game as for the first time in the season not getting into double figures which made way for French to come back into the game who hit a quick three and also Pistol Pete scored inside for a couple of easy baskets to close out the second quarter. The second quarter finished with Erks scoring 22 - Lakers 18.
Now Coach McCusker was quite annoyed at the fact Erks were still only 11 points ahead of Lakers and wanted more!..... He stressed for the Erk's to rebound and make some good shots.
The third quarter started quite quickly with Pringle making his way early into the paint for a hard lay up that he clearly got punched and close lined on but with no foul as the female ref took a shinning to him and wanted to see just how strong he was!!
Erk's number 8 Martin Overare was also on the floor and for some unknown reason can not make the simplest of wide open lay up's or jump shot's, but put in a a pump fake, spin and round the world twist he can make every basket. Overare went on to perform four of these Circus Harlem Globetrotter Lay Up's in the third quarter (for the bench of Erks it was quite enjoyable but puzzling to watch as he missed the easiest lay up in the world prior to these). The Erks finally listened to Coach McCusker and saw out the third quarter with Erks scoring 27 and the Lakers only scoring 3 points in that quarter.
The fourth quarter started with some more of that load of old B*ll*cks in the first opening minutes... But as through out the game it took Coach McCusker who got a strong offensive rebound and put back and one more lay up. Also more of Overare's circus act lay up's and some sharp shooting from French behind the arch to close out the game for Erk's to get their well deserved spot in the Essex Metropolitan Playoff Final on Sunday 11th April, tip off 13:00 at Waltham Abbey.
The game ended Erks 91 - Lakers 52
Scorers: Pistol Pete - 22, Pringle - 15, French - 13, Church - 13, Overare - 12, Denchfield - 9, McCusker - 6 and J-Lee - 2.
Erks 103 Players 67
Erks went on the road Thursday night to play Southend Players in a must win game to keep their back to back championship aspirations alive. Without veteran point guard Keith Pringle the Erks still fielded a strong line up including Denchfield, Vintage Pete, Big Jon Lee, Churches, French, McCusker, Overare, and Atkinson. The opposition also fielded ex Erk Steve Herd.
As the game tipped off the focus went on newly improved wing player Robin French who this season has displayed a consistant threat from outside as he made 2 three point shots in the opening minutes as well as solid inside play from Churches and Vintage Pete. However the Players weren't ready for the offensive onslaught Denchfield had in store as he exploded for a season high 51 points which was only 16 points shy of the whole players team combined, including 14 three point makes as well as a number of inside scores and double digit assists and rebounds. The onslaught was of such magnitude ex Erk forward Steve Herd had to walk out of the gym and leave the game as he was overcome by a sever case of helplessness!
As well as this Kobe Bryantesqe performance there were other strong performances from Coach McCusker who seemed to muscle the opposing number 4 down low for some easy scores. As well as Johnny Lee and Church controlling the offensive and defensive boards and Vintage showing the emaculate footwork of an Eastern European All Star it was a comfortable team performance from Erkenwald. It also must be mentioned that in the final seconds Coach McCusker called the ring a ring a roses defence to ensure confusion in the opposing ranks. This was executed to perfection as the opposing team were dumbfounded for 16 seconds before laying the ball into the very much open basket.
Erks scorers: Denchfield 51, French 19, Vintage Pete 14
Erks 113 Forest 50
Erks went into their last Essex Met league game, knowing that a win would confirm them as Champions...
Despite going into the game without a single recognised ball-handler (both Scarlet and Polish Pete having a night in), the Erks, for once did not make hard work of the game, even though there were some pretty shoddy individual performances...
Erks began, as normal, in a man-to-man defence - instantly throwing themselves into a state of confusion with the Forest No 8, as she isn't a man. Whether this was pure sexism on the part of the Erks team, assuming that as she is a girl she can't play or more likely, not wanting to be seen as a leering sexual predator, she opened the scoring unmarked, despite Churches attempts to get his less than agile frame closer, to use his 16 inch height advantage. Once realising that Churches was the only player not marking anyone, he promptly picked up No 8, only to have it shot back in his face to leave her two from two within the first few minutes.
Erks rallied to help Churches and with some steady offences and their greater size advantage showing in defense, it gave them a first quarter lead of 31-12.
It wasn't all plain sailing in the second quarter as stand-in guard French, was consistently stripped by the Forest No 9. This will no doubt have dented the sales of his dvds he's been trying to flog via his Facebook page - which led the rest of the Erks to think that the recent film clips have been severely edited or that it may have even been a stand-in. Either way, he still can't spin two balls in one hand.
Erks finished the half 60-28 with all players registering on the scoresheet. Notably Robin, who was having trouble keeping up with the skill and speed of the opponents and managed to pick up three fouls. Old Lee 'Twinkle Toes" Atkinson was turning back the clock and was consistently shooting from 15 ft - even managing at one point to shoot from 16.5 ft, but at such an angle that he still managed to release the ball from 15 ft. However, he was shown up by the slowest of head fakes and this from 45 ft. It should also be pointed out that Jonny Lee was 100% from the free-throw (that's baskets actually scored), showing that cometh the time, cometh the man and in crunch times he can still be relied upon.
Erks usual third quarter malaise continued, with them edging it 22-21. No 9 was shooting 3s in French's face, Churches was getting turned inside out in the paint and No 88 (when he remembered to stay in the court) was having a field day with Elvis.
A strong finish by the Erks, ended offensively with Declan and Martin taking it in turns to goal hang and defensively with Jonny Lee, showing no further pity for his opponents, blocking about 5 shots in the last 3 minutes. The Erks with a 31-11 final quarter, giving a final score of 113-50.
Erks scorers - Lee Atkinson 24 (about 12 from 14), French 21 (balls stripped - 3, passes to own team members in opposing half - 4, fouls - 3), Churches 18, Elvis 14, McCusker 11, Martin 10, Denchfield 9 (all in the first quarter) & Jonny Lee 6.
Erkenwald 82 Brentwood Mavericks 68
Erks went into their penultimate Mid-Essex league game full of confidence and ready to show why they are league champions in waiting... With the exception of Martin who had already advised he'd be late, the Erks were all present and correct and ready to warm up properly for the first time this season... Sadly the refs wanted to be home for 10 o'clock to watch the semi-finals of the Lithuanian version of Strictly Come Dancing and so the 1 minute whistle was ready as soon as Babs had finished scribbling names on the scoresheet.
The first quarter was pretty even, as both teams played rubbish.
The second quarter was also even, as despite reverse psychology time outs and team talks by Coach McCusker, the Erks were still playing like Southend Players...
Somehow, the Erks had managed to get their noses ahead, leading 39 - 32 after the first half.
Much of the same ensued, with the Erks being slightly less rubbish than their opponents in the 3rd quarter and so managing to stretch their lead to 61 - 48.
This was just as well, as they could only just scrape the final quarter 21 - 20. This was mainly due to Grinch (Erks #7) fouling out, but always managing to let the player score whilst fouling them...
Highlight of the evening was to follow, as the refs tried to understand the scoresheet and decipher Babs scrawl, eventually signing it, but in the 'under protest' box...
The only positive from the evening was Jonny Lee's season high (only 4 off his career high), scoring the same as Pete on the night... Usually, the only time he scores the same as Pete is when neither of them play... He did manage to shoot another airball from the free-throw line, but this was later analysed and confirmed that someone had left the door open, causing a draught.
One more game for each league and then the play-offs and cup final.
Erks scorers - Chorches 20, Grinch 19, Pingu 15, Drenchfried 10, Lee 8, Prazych (couldn't decipher this one) 8, Mousker 2, Overall & Arkinsas.
Saffron Walden 45 Erkenwald 81
Nothing like a 1 or 2 hour drive on a Sunday evening for a tough game of basketball...
It was the hosts who roared off into an unassailable 22 - 2 lead.... Sadly for them, this was in turnovers, with the Erks, for once, playing good help defence and then breaking to good effect. Unfortunately, Robin was 0 from 2 on his fast break lay-ups. Why he doesn't dunk it, as he does in the warm-ups is clearly a mystery to one and all?
With the Erks playing some good, patient offense, they ended the 1st quarter 24 - 8 up, with Drenchfield scoring half of the Erks points. However, he finished the quarter missing two free-throws, much to the amusement of one of the refs who started trash talking him for being able to hit threes at whim, yet miss from the free throw line.
Much of the same ensued for the 2nd quarter, with the Erks leading 39 - 15 at half time.
Saffron Walden upped their intensity in the second half and this showed in the scoreline, as the Erks edged it 18 - 15. Notable event in the third quarter was the introduction of Coach McCusker, who had arrived late after a 2 hour drive and by his own rules, made himself sit out the first half for his tardiness. His appearance was short-lived, as despite his haul of 2 rebounds and 1 steal, his second rebound was his downfall, taking fingers to the face, leaving him with a few tasty cuts and scratches over his cheek and lip. He returned bloodied and repaired, albeit now looking like the Phantom of the Opera...
Martin had now come to life and was beginning to pick-up easy baskets on the break. Well, I say easy, as they would be to any normal player. Martin, like so many others, doesn't do what he does in practice lay-up drills. Either collecting it from behind the backboard (when he's the only player in the final 3rd) or opting to go under or away from the basket instead of straight to it, Martin managed to rack up a good few points, usually being fouled on the way...
Playing without their Coach, the Erks eventually closed out the game, although by now they were making hard work of it. The Erks' guards, clearly upset at the injury to McCusker decided they were safer out on their own 3 point line and so left it to Jon, Pete and Martin to try and out-rebound the whole of the opposing team.
The author of this report hopes that this is a fairer representation of the facts and not like the previous one that glorifies the author, writing their first report which coincides with a season high...
Only one question remains... What look will Coach McCusker opt for, for tomorrow night's game.... Will he go for the plaster on the top lip, or the slightly less popular Hitler 'tache where he is unable to shave the middle of his top lip properly...?
Erks scorers - Drenchfield 28, Martin 11, Garbage 10, Pete 8, Keith 8, Jon 2, McCusker and Robin (the rest).
Erks 94 Eastbury Tigers 63
On the 2nd March Erks went against their oldest rivals. Oldest being average age about 57 even including Lithuania's Gintara's young rejects.
Erks started with Pete, Lee A, J-Lee, Pringle and of course French in the first quarter. The Erks were first to hit the score board with a nice rotation of passing to find French out on the wing for a nice trey. But the Tigers were also hungry to get on the score board and came back with a couple of baskets and being sent to the three throw line early on.
Then came the turn of Pete who seemed to score with every touch of the ball on a run of 8 points within a couple of minutes. Drenchfield then enter the game and hit a couple of ok trey's nothing special as it wasn't off the dribble or fading away into the corner.
The Erks see out the first quarter up 26 - 13.
The Second Quarter see Drenchfield take off with another spurt of ok treys (5 in fact) in a row, with Tigers number 2 only answering back with a couple of easy through the lane lay up's. French then returned on to the floor where he was running the base line trying to loose the box and 1 defence Tigers has put on him. He was found open in the corner to let off a nice shot only to just rim out but being fouled in the process. He headed to the line and made 2 out of 3 free throws.
The second quarter was not a great show of talent for Erks as they only scored 11 to Tigers 25 in this period.
The 3rd quarter started with probably it's strongest team out Atkinson, J-Lee, Chims, McCusker and of course French. French was now running the point and with a few nice passes and a screen from Chims French was found at the top to hit an off the dribble Trey. Elvis, a new addition to the Erks in the last few games, came in and contributed a few inside jump shots and rebounds. French was also crashing the boards picking up a few rebounds. But also still Tigers number 2 was going to the bucket at will.
Pringle, Pete, Drenchfield all returned into the game all contributing points with a couple of treys from Drenchfield, Pringle making his way to the line and Pete with some fancy footwork to get him to the bucket. But still the Tigers were hungry for a win as the 3rd Quarter finished with Erks only scoring 19 - to Tigers 14.
A few hard words from Coach McCusker stated that the tigers were only one basket away from being within 6 points to Erks. At the shock of this the Erks went out in the 4th Quarter to close the game out.
A few more nice inside moves from Pete and big rebound from J-Lee see the points go up on the score board. But still Tigers number 2 was going to the bucket with ease. Cant think who was marking him, can you Drenchfield?.......
French entered back in the game half way through the quarter who came in and hit a succession of nice treys and also a couple of passes to Drenchfield who hit a 3 or two.
Also Atkinson and McCusker were on the floor. Atkinson pulled the trigger on a nice jump shot deep in the corner to get on the score sheet and also McCusker with a give go pass found his way to the bucket to also add to the score sheet.
The Erks managed to close out the game, but could of turned out to be a major upset if the Erks had played how they did in the 2nd & 3rd Quarter with Tigers taking the Win.
Scorers: McCusker - 2, Atkinson - 2, J-Lee - 2, Pringle - 7, Elvis - 8, French - 19, P Prazych - 22, Drenchfield 32
Erks 95 Brightlingsea Sledgehammers 93
On 16th February, Erks took on the Brightlingsea on their home court. The Erks were without Church who had just recently added another member to his ever extended family.
Starters for the Erks were as follows, Scarlet, Denchfield, French, Pete and "Big" Lee. The Erks started off well enough with the usual trading of baskets. Brightlingsea were without Ward, however they managed to recruit Leopards Big man, Greenan at short notice. As a matter of fact, this was the very same 6ft 10 inch centre who Legendary and ex Erks player Craig Morris, 5ft 10 inches dunked over in a national league game recently. I have it on good authority that the "put back" was "absolutely stunning".
The Erks took an early lead when Pete, Denchfield and Scarlet opened their scoring account with back to back treys. Pete as ever began to show the opposing team his array of spin and post moves, scoring at will. Matthews was the danger man exploding to the hole for Brightlingsea. French was not quite sure what to do defensively as Scarlet constantly shouted at him to play some kind of defence.
Martin and Elvis came off the bench and provided good support with Martin going to the bucket early and getting fouled in the process. He hit both free throws. At the end of the first quarter, Brightlingsea led by 1 point, 27-26.
The second quarter saw Greenan score 6 points back to back. Scarlet then started penetrating to the hole scoring in the process with "and 1"s. Pete continued to find the bucket. More surprisingly, French started scoring at will, hitting his second trey, followed by a pull up whilst dribbling with his left hand. He has been caught recording previous games and now has extensive footage of Denchfield shooting off the dribble. This DVD is now available at all good retail outlets manufactured and directed by Robin French. French is hoping that he can shift a considerable amount of units in order to pay his outstanding subs to the club.
Erks went on a run scoring 12 points before Brightlingsea responded. The score was 44-32 to the Erks. Brightlingsea brought it back to end the half with Erks winning 56-49.
The third quarter saw Denchfield heat up with treys and one of his many characteristic pull ups. Elvis joined the bandwagon, giving the Erks some much needed offence. The Erks seem to be doing well and the score at the end of the third quarter was 78-72 to the Erks.
The final quarter saw Scarlet go to the hole getting fouled in the process. Scarlet made 7 of his 9 free throws during the game which was as a result of Denchfield giving up his time on facebook and coaching Scarlet at the free throw line. Pete continued to be big at the offensive end. Denchfield continued in the same manner hitting his shots.
With Erks up by 2 points with 20 or so seconds left, Coach Declan called a timeout and gave specific instructions, not to shoot the ball until his say so. The Erks knew that Brightlingsea were going to pressure the ball. Scarlet got the ball and made his way up the court. He was being pressured by Matthews. He passed the ball to French who was invaded by an unknown force. What happened next can only be described as absolute madness. French shot a three pointer from near enough the half way line. Lucky enough, Brightlingsea did not score. Declan called a time out and with everyone having a go at French, he replied "I was open".
Pete was at the free throw line and hit 1 of 2 with 0.6 seconds left. The Erks won the game by 2 points, 95-93.
Much of the success of this game was mainly due to "big Johnny Lee" who remained in the game, providing offensive and Defensive rebounds. Not only did he set good screens offensively but was a constant thorn in the side of Greenan. It only leaves to be said that if the Erks played better help defence and stopped fouling the shooter whilst going to the basket, the Erks would have won the game by a bigger margin.
Oh and who was marking Jules who had a career high. Unbelievable!!
Scorers: Pete 28, Scarlet 20, Denchfield 20, Elvis 11, French 10, Big Johnny Lee 4, Martin 2
Brightlingsea top three scorers: Matthews 28, Jules 28, Greenan 14
Erks 71 Scorpions 45
For the 6th consecutive game in 2 seasons, Erks beat Scorpions - this time with a 1 sided affair - to go back to the Cup final for the 3rd successive season.
In line with recent games between the teams, non "playing" basketball issues seemed to be at the forefront of the mind of certain individuals. Extensive clarification of rule 46(iii) subsection 2(a) (zxsw) (vviiiii), subsubsection (ca)(3iii)(2iia3kjsii - 4asw) of "The Mongolian Rules of Fair Play" were sought before the game to ensure the non participation of certain players; however, this did not have the desired effect.
Some fans were heard shouting "Why don't you try to win the game by playing basketball instead of trying to win by default" but this was all in vein.
The high scoring game of 2 weeks ago between Erks and Scorpoins was not repeated as Erks stepped up the defence and kept the visitors to just 45 points (6 less than they scored by half time in the league fixture).
At the other end, Mark found his rhythm after scoring ZERO POINTS 2 weeks ago against the same opposition by hitting 19 points. Scarlet drove to the bucket with conviction picking up numerous fouls and the way to 11 points whilst Robin chipped in with 9 first half points and Garbage Time Dave Churches hit 8.
Declan could have hit 4 points but instead got blocked twice as it now takes him 3 times as long to get to the basket enabling defenders to walk to the basket and queue up for the impending block.
However, Polish Pete had the pick of the offence hitting 24 points with an array of post ups, spin moves, free throws and jump shots to leave his defenders totally bewildered - and out of the cup - again!!
Erks 79 Saints 60
Chims did the visual score for the first half last night and Erks were up 7 without playing very well offensively.
Vince took some terrible shots, Pete was going 1 on 1 from outside the key instead of getting position down low, so even if he beat his man, he was running into their big guy instead of scoring a lay up. When French replaced Keith at the point, he hit a few circus shots, but the offense completely stalled, with the result that Mark hardly touched the ball, so therefore when he did get a touch he shot it. French appears to have borrowed Broms's drive into the corner and then pick up your dribble move, so Steve Pearl spent a lot of time screaming "Dead, dead, dead".
On the plus side there was more shape when Keith was in and more chance of penetrating and moving them about a bit, Church looked sharp and was taking it to their big guy inside, when Pete got it close to the basket he usually scored and Vince could jump over anybody for offensive boards if he stayed around the baseline.
Defensively apart from being slower than them in transition and being outhustled for offensive boards, whenever it got into a half court game, Saints couldn't score. Plus their 2nd big guy had 3 fouls and Steve Pearl had laid into their young point guard to the extent that he was scared to do anything, so Erks pulled away in the 2nd half for the win.
Season's Greetings from Erks
Barking and Dagenham Erkenwald Basketball Club wish all their fans and players a very Merry Christmas and a bright and prosperous 2010.
Forest 73 Erks 131
Erks maintained their unbeaten start to the season yesterday with a visit to a new look Forest team.
Erks could not afford the humiliation of another Forest defeat so Jonny Lee and Richard Williams were dropped (previously losers at Forest). Lee Atkinson (another previous loser at Forest) kept his place but only on the strict understanding that he could increase the average age of the Erks by 48 years accordingly.
The new look Forest team included thirteen players, five of whom have obviously been lifting weights in the gym and the team even included a young lady for whom Robin and Vince argued all night over who should mark her!
Vince was looking to exceed his previous fifty point haul at fellow league minnows (Galleon) and this was done with considerable aplomb as he racked up 53 points, including at least ten dunks, twenty five rebounds, six turnovers, no assists and no passes.
Even Robin managed four passes throughout the game - although these were primarily after he had dribbled in to the corner, got himself stuck and despite wanting to shoot off balance whilst going out of bounds, had no alternative but to pass to one of his fellow team players.
In the end, Erks ran out comfortable winners with all six players making the score sheet - including Minsak. Unfortunately for him, his girlfriend was not there to witness the event so the likelihood of a post match celebration with her was significantly reduced!
Erks scorers: Vince Montrichard - 53, Declan - 18, Martin Overare - 22, Robin "shoot at all costs" French - 26, Lee Atkinson - 10, Minsak - 2
Hammers 76 Erks 69
Tuesday 17th November 2009 saw the Erks travel to Brightlingsea (Sledgehammers) for the clash of the titans, sequel 1.
The Erks started well stamping their authority on the game from the outset taking a commanding lead in the first quarter with the score 12-7. Both teams initially struggled offensively as a number of long range bombs were launched without success. Scarlet was being marked tightly by Matthews (now BBL player with Essex Pirates) and at first struggled with his offensive game. Eventually, Scarlet broke the deadlock and drove hard to the basket to break his duck.
Denchfield began to get loose with a dribble penetration move to the basket and a quick pull up from 12ft to get his offence underway. The Trinidadian, on the other hand was given the ball several times in a low post position. All what was required of him was to power dribble to the basket and lay up the ball. Instead he wanted to practice his 'triple toe loop 360 degree jump shot' without any success. The Erks would have been up by at least 15 points if those baskets were made. However this was not the only factor which led to the Erk's downfall which will be commented on the conclusion of the report.
The second quarter saw Denchfield unleash some much needed bombs as he took his personal unprecedented score for the half to 18 points. Frenchy came off the bench to contribute with a trey and played good defence to help the Erks maintain their offence composure. Hitman Lee and Garbage continued to rebound relentlessly and set screens. Unfortunately, this was not a game whereby the big men saw much of the ball offensively as quoted by Hitman Lee on being substituted out, 'Good luck Churchy, you may see the ball more than I have.' Although this was a common feature throughout the game, the Erks remained very much in contention with the Hammer's as at half time the Erks led by 1 point, 34-33.
The second half saw the third quarter finish a close affair with the Hammers up by two points, 55-53. Scarlet started to drive to the bucket aggressively with a couple and 1, but failed to convert on two separate trips to the line!? Garbage began to see some daylight down low on the offensive end and scored 4 points in the quarter. The Trinidadian drove to the bucket and was fouled on a couple of plays, whereby he failed to make good at the charity stripe. Again, Frenchy came up with a big Trey to keep the Erks alive near the end of the quarter.
In the 4th quarter, Scarlet drove to the bucket and was fouled 'and 1', I hear you shout. Scarlet made the bucket but failed to register at the charity line again. What followed was a stint where the Hammers went to the charity stripe 3 times only converting twice which was lucky for the Erks. At this time the Erks were down by 2. Ward of the Hammers then converted a post move. The Hammers were now leading by 4 points.
Erks on the offensive end panicked putting up long range bombs and ill advised shoots. Fortunately, the Erks were not punished and the game was tied up with Vintage Pete hitting his trademark turnaround shots in the post. The score was now 61-61. Scarlet continued to drive to the bucket and down the stretch missed two three throws. Again, I hear you say!! The Erks continued to battle, however, the Hammers proved that on this occasion, they had too much fire power for the Erks. The Hammers ran out clear winners. 76-69.
Scarlet was interviewed after the game and in his own words, 'Yes, of course I am disappointed. We have a great team; however there is a lack of understanding of a few as to what is required of them. It is human nature that when things are not going right for you, you tend to signal out others. This is wrong. You need to look at yourself. What is it you are not doing to help the team win? In addition to this we have no structure and we are over reliant on two or three players which should not be the case. As the point guard, this is my responsibility and I will take this all on board going into our next game. Lastly, we missed 9 three throws and I was responsible for 6 of those. I need to address this ASAP.'
Scorers: Scarlet 20, Denchfield 20, The Trinidadian 9, Garbage 8, Frenchy 6, Vintage Pete 4, Overare 2, Declan, Lee
Matthews led the Hammers scoring with 20 points
After the Erks v Brentwood Fire report was published, we received an email from a Mr A Ball, who complained about the way Erks forward, Robin French, had been portrayed in the report. We responded that we would look into the matter and make changes if they were deemed appropriate.
The matter has been investigated and it was found that there was nothing to change. In addition Robin admits "I had a shocker n deserve it so....!".
The matter is now closed however, in the interests of openness, the original email and subsequent response is here.
Erks 74 Brentwood Fire 56
The Erks started well enough with Denchfield, the Trinidadian and Scarlet finding the bucket early. The highlight of the quarter was to watch Frenchie turn the ball over several times and to shoot four air balls from the 3 point line all in the space of two minutes. This continued throughout the game. A post game conference with Frenchie revealed that he had recently been attacked by an unknown person and suffered bruising to his ribs. This of course led to him playing through the game in excruciating pain and his nightmare performance can only be attributed to recent traumatic events. The police have since circulated a wanted poster for Frenchie's attacker only known as 'Pinocchio'!!
Continuing with the game, Brentwood Fire was able to penetrate the Erks Defence and the first quarter remained a close affair with the Erks up by two, 15-13.
Coach Declan decided to switch the Defence to a zone. Yet another strategic implementation from Coach (aka Pat Riley) served the Erks very well. The Erks were able to pull away and by the end of the second quarter led by15 points. Denchfield once again hit two timely treys. Garbage and Scarlet added a pair. The Erks were truly in command of the game.
The second half was very much a one sided affair. Coach Declan made a very pleasing drive to the bucket and on another occasion caught a near enough impossible pass from Denchfield to score under the bucket. Overare posted his man up on the block and hit a turn around shot of the backboard. Last, but not least, the cornerstone of the the Erks team, 'hitman Lee' continued with his good performances by rebounding and setting solid screens not to mention an 'and 1' move made to the bucket. Erks never looked back once they had established a 20 point lead and ran out clear winners with the score 74-56.
Finally, the author of this report spoke to Vintage Pete and he is making a speedy recovery. He in fact stated in his own words 'I have had time to recuperate and during my convalescence, I have visited Caister Castle which proved very therapeutic.' Good for Pete. We will hopefully have him available for next week's clash of the titans encounter against Essex League runners- up Brightlingsea. This could be the league decider.
Scorers: Denchfield 24, Scarlet 21, The Trinidadian 12, Garbage 5, Declan 4, Overare 4, Lee 4, Frenchie 10 air balls, 10 turnovers
Erks 71 Baddow Eagles 54
The first quarter saw the Erks trailing as the Baddow team came out with more energy and Erks defence was a little suspect to say the least. Scarlet hit a trey and the Trinidadian kept the Erks in contention by scoring 8 of the Erks 14 points. Baddow led the quarter scoring 19 points.
In the second quarter both teams traded baskets with Denchfield exploding onto the score sheet with an impressive 12 points with an array of drives to the bucket as well as a couple of trademark treys. Who said Denchfield was a one dimensional player??? Scarlet continued to drive and penetrate helping the Erks to level scores at the end of the half.
The second half saw the Erks take control of the game. They tightened up their defence and were rewarded accordingly. Garbage time led the way showing great leadership by scoring 9 points ( including a trey) in the 3rd quarter. Johnny Lee made his presence felt by securing rebounds for the Erks defensively. Vintage Pete by his standards was having a very quiet game. What followed was a blow to the Erks team as Vintage Pete attempted to drive baseline against three defensive players and injured his knee causing him to fall to the floor in agony. Vintage Pete was helped off the floor and led to the bench where he sat out the remaining quarter. We wish Pete a speedy recovery.
The final quarter saw the Erks by now well in control and winning the game comfortably. To cap the night off, the Trinidadian became frustrated during one play and threw the ball at the wall. This resulted in a technical foul which saw the Trinidadian leave the court to eat some pine for his outrageous behaviour. Naughty boy! The final score 71-54. Erks remain unbeaten despite a rather lacklustre performance.
Lastly, the author of this report was approached by a certain unhappy player with regard to his last report ie 'Players game' in no uncertain terms, this player accused the author of favouritism and made claims that certain players were being mentioned more than others in the report. Need I say any more!! If you provide a significant contribution to the game, of course you will be mentioned!!
Scorers: Denchfield 20, The Trinidadian 17, Scarlet 16, Garbage 13, Vintage Pete 5, Frenchy, Nanang, Atkinson, Lee
Saints 67 Erks 77
Erks secured a hard earned victory on the road at Saints - coming from behind for most of the game to wrap things up in the 4th quarter.
A game high 25 points from Emmerson for Saints was all in vein as Saints failed to take revenge for Erks snatching the league title from them, and knocking them out of the Cup, last season.
Saints started brightly and, together with Erks failing to hit the target, found themselves 18 - 11 up at the end of the first. A further flurry saw Saints take a 33 - 17 lead with 2 minutes left in the half but a defensive change for the Erks saw a late rally to finish the half trailing by 10.
Defence stepped up again the the second half and, despite trailing by 3 at the end of the third, an 11 point haul by Mark Denchfield in 2 minutes at the start of the 4th saw the game swing in Erks favour. Jonny Lee controlled the defensive boards whilst Scarlet & Pete kept the pressure on the home side by hitting numerous free throws and Erks ran out comfortable winners.
In his post match interview, Saints coach commented "Once again, I tried all that shouting, prancing up and down the line, and giving that smug look to the Erks bench when we were winning - but it all came back to haunt me. I've had my smug look wiped off my face by Erks yet again."
Erks scorers: Mark 24, Martin 2, Pete 11, Scarlet 16, Garbage Time Dave Churches 5, Vince (aka Sedley the Trinadadian) 19 (but no dunks), Declan, Robin & Jonny Lee.
Tigers 63 - Erks 102
Erks rolled to a third straight Essex Met victory, topping the 100 point mark for the first time this season as Trinidadian Vince Montrichard laughed in the face of Mark Denchfield's claim that he would take down the Essex Met scoring title, by scoring 52 points including an alley oop, 2 tip jams and 4 dunks including 1 coast to coast behind the back move on former Gintaras and London Towers guard Aivaras Sakurovas.
Martin Overare added 18 points and Robin French chipped in with 16 on 34 shots as all 7 Erks players got on the scoresheet. For Tigers, Sakurovas lead the way with 19 points and Tsaliunas hit 12 before fouling out as the Tigers, strengthened by some new blood this season, kept the scoreboard ticking over but couldn't stop the Erks at the other end.
The Trinidadian's highlight play was converting an alley-oop from a perfectly thrown Robin French pass, and Vince commented that it was good to finally play with a point guard who knew how to deliver an alley-oop unlike that old guy Keith who usually plays. The degree of difficulty was highlighted in the second half, when Declan McCusker's first career alley-oop attempt missed the intended target by about 5 feet. Although it could have been a shot.
In McCusker's defense, since in the Erks NBL days the only people who could dunk were Ed Bailey in the warm up line and Dave Churches in a 9 foot ring at Stoke, it wasn't a play that he'd had cause to practise much.
Martin Overare also showed that whilst Pete may be in a league of his own when it comes to discussions about prog-rock albums, he doesn't have a monopoly on post moves. Although as ever Martin was 6 for 7 on double pump spin in mid-air moves and 1 for 6 on open lay ups.
Erks scorers: Montrichard 52, Overare 18, French 16, McCusker 7, Twinkle Toes Atkinson 5, Chims Williams 2, Nanang 2.
Erks 79 Players 67
On Tuesday 20th October 2009, Erks started their Essex League campaign by defeating Southend Players.
Erks started their Essex League campaign with Scarlet, Denchfield, Declan, Pete and Lee on the court. Scarlet and Denchfield between them shot at least 10 outside shots which failed to register. Vintage Pete was the only player who could consistently find the basket hitting 8 points in the first quarter. Meanwhile, the ever so potent Cooper for Players was held to just 4 points in the first quarter by Scarlet. The score in the first quarter ended with the Erks leading 13-12.
The second quarter saw Scarlet being more aggressive and he hit a three pointer followed by drives to the basket and short range pull ups. He was able to find Churchy and Overare through the use of 'the pick and role'. The Trinidadian made an immediate impact to the game by scoring 9 points in the quarter including a 3 pointer. Meanwhile, Frenchy decided that he would like to Mark Cooper. Cooper's eyes lit up and repeatedly, Frenchy was taken to the hole upon which Cooper was fouled leading him to the free throw line. Cooper finished with 10 points in that quarter. By this time, Frenchy was having nightmares as he thought it was déjà vu as last season Cooper single handedly scored 36 points on Frenchy. Frenchy clearly had something to prove!? The scores were level at the half way point 32-32.
In the interval period, Coach Declan was not happy with the lack of effort on the defensive end. The opposing team were breaking on Erks on every opportunity and as a result were being fouled as they drove to the basket leading to an 'and 1'. Coach Declan decided to change the team's Defence. This proved to be decisive.
The third quarter saw the Erks implement a 'box and 1' on Cooper with Frenchy face guarding and the remaining 4 players in a box zone. Cooper managed to score just 2 points in the quarter. Scarlet continued to drive to the basket and make shots. Scarlet started to find Denchfield who hit back to back 3 pointers which was the dagger as Erks cruised ahead. The Trinidadian, Churchy and Pete continued to find ways to score. Scarlet found Pete who sealed the third quarter with a last second three pointer. The Erks were now truly in command of the game leading 61-49.
The last quarter saw Pete go coast to coast on a number of occasions despite the fact that there was a team mate who he could pass to for an easy score. Pete needed to be reminded to 'find the open man'. Pete was reminded that there is no scoring title in the Essex League. Denchfield had won the scoring title in the Essex Metropolitan League last season. Pete had this blank and confused expression on his face and said he did not quite understand!!
The quarter was highlighted by The Trinidadian who stole the ball and went for a one hand dunk. Unfortunately he did not jump high enough and hit the front of the ring with the ball causing him to fall backwards onto the floor. In basketball terms 'he got a backy'. The bench were stunned as the Trinidadian can jump out of the gym. However, a minute later, he got another steal and redeemed himself with an emphatic one hand dunk. The concluding quarter saw the Erks win comfortably 79-67.
Erks scorers: Scarlet 20, Pete 19, The Trinidadian 15, Denchfield 10, Churches 7, Overare 7, Lee 1, French, Declan, Atkinson
Cooper for Players scored 20 points
Cardinals 54 Erks 79
Erks hit away form again with their 2nd straight win of the season at Cardinals. Cardinals were not at full strength with a key number of players missing and Erks took full advantage by dominating the first 3 quarters - holding Cardinals to just 33 points until the 4th quarter.
Erks had 4 players in double figures with Pete leading all scorers with 20. New addition from Trinidad Vince Montrichard continued to show his potential with another solid performance and 17 points and even Garbage Time Dave Churches chipped in with 16!!
Not all Erks got on the scoresheet with Declan & Jonny Lee both going 0 for 1 each. However, with Mark, Pete, Vince and Garbage Time Dave Churches hogging the ball for 98.4% of all Erks' possessions, it would appear shots for any other Erks this season could be somewhat limited..
Erks scorers: Mark 12 (prizes for guessing how Mark got 12 points ie 12 free throws, 6 lay ups or 4 "3" pointers), Robin 3, Martin 2, Scarlet Pimpernel Keith Pringle 8, Pete 20, Garbage Time Dave Churches 16, Vince Montrichard 17
Erks off to flyer
Erks got their season off in winning ways at Lakers in the EMBL on Friday. Despite most Erks not being able to find the venue on time due to roadworks and confusing diversion signs, Erks took control in the first quarter and never looked back.
New Trinidad man, Vince Demontrincind made an impressive Erks debut and, after shooting 3 for 15 in the first quarter, Vince eventually found his rhythm to lead all scorers with 24, including 5 dunks!!
Mark & Robin hit from the outside and all 8 Erks got on the scoreboard as Erks ran out comfortable winners.
Erks scorers: Scarlet Pringle 8, Garbage Time Dave Churches 3, Mark Denchfield 20, Robin French 14, Vince 24, Jonny Lee 2, Polish Pete 14, Declan 3
We're pleased to report that Vikki successfully completed her skydive.
"Together we managed to raise over £1400 for the Parkinson's Disease charity and I'm so chuffed. I don't really know how to put my thoughts into words to express truly how grateful I am to all of you. Not only have you supported me in my moment of madness but clearly still hold dear the wonderful man for whom I did it. Thank you, thank you, thank you for simply being you. You're truly awesome!"
She also sent us some pictures of her jump:
Vikki Cooper's Skydive for Parkinson's Disease Society
Phil Cooper's daughter Vikki is doing a skydive to raise money for the Parkinson's Disease Society. If you'd like to sponsor her for the jump on September 12th, click here.
Phil was suffering from the disease when he sadly passed away in July 2007.
Erks reached the semi finals last Sunday. Read about it here.
Hammers prove too strong in final two games
Despite losing the Essex Basketball League title to Erks, Hammers proved too strong again as they beat Erks twice to win the Essex League Cup (68 - 74) and the Play Off Final (73 - 91).
Erks win Essex play off semi final
Essex League champions, Erks, progressed comfortably into the Play Off Final after a 90 - 61 point win over Scorpions on Sunday afternoon. Mark Denchfield (aka Drench) top scored with 41 points including 9 treys.
Erks will face the winner of Tuesday's Hammers v Southend Saints game in the Essex League play off final.
Gintaras win play off final
Gintaras continue to dominate the EMBL with an 82 - 74 win against Cardinals in the EMBL play off final on Sunday afternoon.
Gintaras knock out Erks in semi
Erks' failure to beat Cardinals meant they faced EMBL champions Gintaras in the play - off semi final on Tuesday 14th. Unfortunately (for Erks) Gintaras were the stronger team on the night and ran out comfortable 52 - 68 winners.
Cardinals win puts Erks in 4th
Erks lost their final regular season game 86 - 89 at home to Cardinals tonight. Tied at 74 at the end of regulation time, the loss, after overtime, means that Erks finish the EMBL in fourth place and will travel to Gintaras for the play off semi final.
Erks booked their place in the Essex Cup final with a 78 - 69 point win over Saints on Friday night. Piotr Prazych top scored for the Erks with 31 points. Report here.
Erks' opponents in the final will be Hammers.
Erks claim Essex title
A stellar 58 point performance by Piotr Prazych led Erks to an 88 - 64 point win at Stealers on Sunday 29th. The result means that Erks will win the League title given their favourable head to head and points difference totals compared to Hammers and Saints. Game report here.
Erks avenge Saints defeat
Mark Denchfield drained 8 three pointers as Erks comfortably avenged their earlier loss at Saints with a 103 - 60 point margin on Friday night. Report here.
Back to back wins
Erks bounce back
After suffering the buzzer beater loss on Friday night, Erks bounced back to winning ways with an 86 - 69 win at Fire on Sunday 15th. Piotr Prazych top scored with 34 points. Report here.
Gintaras by one
Ginatras visited Erks on Friday 13th and came away with a one point victory, 84 - 85, thanks to a miracle buzzer beater by Darius. Report here.
Erks clip Eagles
Erks visited Baddow Eagles tonight and left with a 94 - 75 win. Full report coming soon.
Stars triumph at Erks
Erks' unbeaten home record was shattered by Stars who won 79 - 91 on Friday 27th. The loss essentially leaves Gintaras and Stars as favourites for the EMBL title this year. Full report here.
Erks remain 100% unbeaten at home
Brentwood Fire were the latest team to fall to the Erks on Friday 20th. Mark Denchfield top scored with 27 points. Full report here.
Saints thrash Erks
Erks' EBL title hopes were smashed by Saints who won 57 - 77 on Tuesday 10th. Report here.
Erks beat Lakers
Erks beat Lakers 95 - 75 on Friday night. Peter Prazych led the Erks with 35 points. Report here.
Erks beat Stars by 1
Erks returned to winning ways with a 79 - 78 win over Stars on Sunday. Report here.
Erks lose by 3
Hammers proved too strong for Erks on Friday night winning 87 - 90. More details soon.
Hammers seek revenge
Erks' next game is on Friday 23rd when they host Brightlingsea Sledgehammers. The visitors will be looking to avenge their earlier season loss so it should be an interesting game.
Happy New Year to everyone! Erks have had two games since the Christmas break. On Friday 16th they defeated Scorpions 93 - 74 in the Essex League and this was followed by an 81 - 48 win on Tuesday 20th at Baddow Eagles 2 in the Essex Senior Men's Cup.
Season's Greetings from the Erks
We wish everyone a peaceful Christmas and a prosperous 2009. Erks will be back in action at Forest on Thursday, January 8th 2009.
Erks lose second EMBL game
Following the defeat by Gintatras the previous week, Erks lost a second game at Cardinals on Thursday night. The result was 65 - 70.
More details soon.
SCHEDULE CHANGE: Mavericks on Wednesday 17th December
We've just updated our EBL schedule with the new date.
MATCH REPORT: Gintaras give Erks first defeat
Erks went back to Sydney Russell on Tuesday 25th but Gintaras proved too strong and the visitors suffered their first defeat, 79 - 81, in the EMBL this season. Match report is now available.
Erks defeated Lakers 76 - 75 after overtime on Friday night (21st).
Erks comfortably beat Forest 115 - 45 last Friday night in the EMBL.
Erks scorers: Mark Denchfield 27, Ants Roujiihainen 25, Declan McCusker 8, Martin Overare 20, Lee Atkinson 12, Jonny Lee 8, Dave Churches 15.
MATCH REPORT: Erks beat Hammers 91 - 86
Erks will visit Mavericks on Wednesday 10th December in the EBL.
Erks will now visit Brentwood Fire on Thursday 26th February in the EMBL.
Erks won their third Essex Basketball League game on Friday night with a comfortable 79 - 53 point win over Baddow Eagles.
Pete 27, Mark 24 (all in a 15 minute period in the 1st and 2nd quarters), Martin 12, Keith 8, Garbage 4, Jon Lee 2, Ants 2 but 5 fouls
The EMBL game originally scheduled for Sunday 16th November at Brentwood Fire has been postponed.
We've added the Essex Basketball League Schedule to our EBL team page.
Erks' next home game will be on November 7th against Baddow Eagles. It was originally scheduled for Friday 31st October.
We've added the Essex Metro League schedule to our EMBL team page.
Erks registered their second win in the Essex League with a 90 - 69 performance over Saffron Walden.
Mark Denchfield hit 5 straight 3s from his first 5 shots to register 20 points in the first quarter. All 10 Erks contributed to the scoresheet in a hard fought win where the scoreline didn't reflect how close the game was. Erks' two new Eastern Europeans both made significant contributions with Pete hitting 18 and Ants hitting 7.
Mark Denchfield 32, Pete 18, Keith Pringle 9, Martin Overare 8, Ants Rouhijainen 7, Dave "Garbage Time" Churches 7, Robin French 3, Declan McCusker 2, Jonny Lee 2, Lee Atkinson 2
Erks opened their EMBL account with a comfortable 100 - 39 point win over Eastbury Tigers.
New guard, Ants Rouhijainen, top scored with 25 points while Mark Denchfield (on left) added 23.
Ants Rouhijainen 25, Mark Denchfield 23, Dave "Garbage Time" Churches 17, Robin French 16, Declan McCusker 10, Martin Overare 9
One of the ways that we're using to keep the site up to date is via twitter. We'll be using it for latest scores from the games and to announce when new stuff goes up online.
You can follow our feed directly here.
It was about time that we rejigged our website and we now finally have. We hope you like the new look and features. The old pages are still around and can be viewed here.
Erks started their Essex League campaign with a convincing 94 - 78 point win at Southend Scorpions on Thursday 9th. Report coming soon.
You may have noticed that Erks have moved eastwards along the A13 to Basildon. Home games now take place on Friday nights at the Markhams Chase Centre in Basildon.