Leeds Force’s tough baptism to life in the BBL continued with a 66-48 defeat at Cheshire Phoenix but forward Oliver Hylands believes the rookies are improving.
The winless Force slipped to a third straight defeat across the Pennines last night after a slow start saw them trail 33-20 at the interval.
But Matt Newby’s side came out fast in the third quarter, winning that 10-minute period 16-12 to pull to within nine points, before the experienced Phoenix ran away with it in the final quarter. Zak Wells and Darrel Bethune top-scored for the Force with 14 points.
Hylands, who added two points, said: “It was a much-improved performance today. We had a rough start to the game and then clawed it back.
“We just didn’t quite have enough in the end.
“In the three games we’ve played we’ve shown improvement.
“But we have either started slowly or finished much weaker than our opponents.
“At times we just run out of steam. It’s definitely a depth issue. We’ve got three players to come back; Patrick Nyeko, our American point guard James McCann and Will Hall, a top British player. So hopefully we’ll improve over the coming weeks.”
Nyeko is due to be on the sidelines for at least a week with a strained knee.