Basketball Varsity Preview: meet the team
Meet the Guard players of the Bristol basketball team ahead of the Varsity match
Varsity is almost upon us, with 6 Societies, 16 Sports, 53 Matches, 106 Teams and 1108 Competitors going head to head to decide whether UWE or Bristol will be crowned Varsity 2014 Champions.
The rivalry between the Basketball teams is intense and has evolved over the last few years, with both teams drawing coaches from the Bristol Academy Flyers’ staff, the clubs know each other well.
Bristol have a strong selection of guards this year, making the task of selecting a team difficult for coach, Roy Owen, who has led the team to promotion into 1A with only a single loss.
UWE have had a similarly successful season, winning 1A but missing out on promotion to the Premiership in the playoffs.
After winning Varsity last year, and the last match played against UWE in the local League, Bristol go into the match with the potential to win the Treble, as they are also in the Western Conference Cup final.
Player profile: Captain Patrick Lloyd
Sophomore (2nd year)
Height: Says 6’ actual height 5’11”
Nickname: Swaggy P
Paddy has led the team with passion and enthusiasm on and off the court all year, setting a great example for the whole team. An outstanding defender, who has improved his shot this year to become an offensive threat from beyond the arc. A man who models himself on 6’2” NBA player Eric Bledsoe, Paddy continues to strive for those extra couple of inches.
Bringing the biggest bromance the team has seen in living memory to Bristol, a mention to Paddy’s other half Hamish must be made. Regardless of the number of snapchats or hashtags sent promoting himself and his ridiculous ego, he manages to live up to these high standards when it comes to the clutch.
Player profile: Davide De Mola
Junior (3rd Year)
Reading: Physics & Philosophy
Nickname: The Professor
Davide is the father figure of the team, with a beard of biblical proportions. He’s taken the youngest of the team under his wing, as both live in Stoke Bishop, where Davide may well live out his days in Halls where he’s been since first year and likely will be until we’re forced to call him Doctor.
He is renowned for his sharp-shooting ability from 3 and his European style of defence is a force to be reckoned with. As one of the more senior players on the team, Davide leads by example with impressive dedication – at practice 30 mins before, even for the weekly 7.30am start. A beast on-court as well as the changing rooms, he’s known to spend more time unclothed than in kit.
Player Profile: Hamish Russell
Sophomore (2nd Year)
Height: Taller than Paddy
The second part to Padmish, Hamish captains our local league WEBBA team, for which he currently has the most MVP (Most valuable player) awards out of the team. An all-round asset, Hamish thrives going to the rim with his unconventional layups and fast-break prowess. A player who can quickly be identified by his audacious pink rugby socks, Hamish takes his basketball fashion more seriously than his game.
Player profile: Theo Spyrides
Freshman (1st year)
Reading: Maths & Philosophy
Nickname: The prodigy
The cream of the freshman crop, Theo has filled Andy Salmon’s (GB U20) vacated space as starting point guard, which many thought would be our downfall this season. Despite initial difficulty integrating with the team, Theo has shown himself to be a key player this year and has established himself as the player calling the shots on court. He plays with a composure that permeates to all members on court.
The man who once took a charge on a dog, Theo doesn’t shy away from getting friendly with defenders. With his laughable beard, he is yet to reach his mentor’s facial fur prowess. The only question remaining is whether his floppiness on court is matched off court.
Player profile: Theodulous Rodosthenous
Freshman (1st year)
The newest addition to the 1st team, Theo was an early Christmas present from the 2nd team. Theo is a powerhouse, pound for pound the strongest player on the team. A Jack of all trades, yet a master of all, there is nothing theo cannot do on the basketball court. A physical specimen who needs to be seen to be believed.
His vocal capabilities are however not aligned with his physical ones, with players not able to hear the plays he calls. Whilst his approach to running the point may differ to Spyrides, his questionable facial hair is something they share.
Junior (3rd year)
Height: Not officially a midget
Nickname: Rainy Finger
Sunny is one of the three players graduating this year, after three years of hard work and dedication to the team, Rainy finger is a veteran presence on the court. Sunny’s game is best summed up as weather report, with rain expected beyond the arc and storms expected in the paint. Rain or shine, sunny will be splashing in the puddles that his jump shots created. What he lacks in stature his chat makes up for.
Sophomore (2nd year)
Reading: Economics and Management
Justin is known for his outrageous bounce and his reliable three point shot – NASA are considering using its trajectory as a model for their next space probe. Youngblood’s partnership with sunny has resulted in the largest basketball shoe collection known outside of the US. His lack of alarm clock is something that Justin could improve on next year and hopefully he’ll be investing in one in time for next season.
Sophomore (2nd Year)
Reading: Civil Engineering
Known on court for his high risky dribbling, which can cause havoc for even the most organised defence, which does lead to the occasional carry, Constantinos has a pull up jump shot to be jealous of. With dedication comparable to his NBA player of choice Kobe Bryant, Constantinos has never missed a practice and personifies the high work ethic that has led the team to such a successful season. He has a beard that defies description, and a fantastic on and off court bond with fellow Greek Theodoulus.
Senior (4th Year)
Reading: Mechanical Engineering
After a year abroad in France where Christos joined a Fraternity with some interesting rules regarding your hairdo, Helldogs re-joined the club this year with a move up to the 1st team.
A reliable player who isn’t afraid to shoot the ball, Helldogs has been a go to guard for a quick score on offense. The resident DJ (we are in Bristol after all) HdK has recently been signed to Roots of Society Recordsm with an album out soon.
Until then check out his soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/helldogs-kris
With thanks to Stella Papadopoulos for the pictures