Baker aims for strong finish

As they prepare for Saturday’s trip to Ipswich, Levett Essex Leopards coach Thomas Baker is looking for his team to finish the season strongly .
The Big Cats saw their hopes of a top two finish virtually ended when they lost at home against Thames Valley Cavaliers, but Baker wants his side to finish with the best possible record:
“Heading into this weekend we are refreshed and ready to go after another weekend off” he said.
“With eight games left it is important we continue to finish the season well. We performed well in our last game against TVC and even though the result wasn’t what we wanted, we must take positives from it and look to build as we look to finish as high as possible to allow us to have a strong post season play-off push.”
Saturday’s trip to Ipswich will be the third meeting between the teams this season, and although the Big Cats have won both games, the Suffolk side have caused them some problems.
When they travelled to Copplestone School in September Baker’s team overcame a 19-16 first period to record an 89-58 victory in the Patrons Cup.
The league meeting at the Brentwood Centre in November saw Leopards led for more than 39 of the 40 regulation time minutes but let a 23-point lead slip as the visitors forced overtime. But the extra period saw the Big Cats regain the momentum to overpower the Suffolk side with a 17-3 run to record a 94-80 victory.
The Suffolk side have slipped down the table in recent weeks, and will go into the game in joint seventh place with a 6-11 record.
Baker knows what to expect as his side prepare to travel to Suffolk: “Ipswich are a team we know well having already played them twice this year, they have got stronger as the season has progressed so we must be ready for a test this weekend” he said..
“The guys are in good spirits and look forward to getting back to winning ways. We are looking to separate ourselves from the chasing pack as we look to establish ourselves as one the premier teams in this division.”

Leopards return to the Brentwood Centre on Sunday March 4 when Derbyshire Arrows are the visitors, tip-off 4pm.