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Titans Blog
  • As we say goodbye.......... by Julie Grant

    This season was always going to be an emotional one for me; Sam began at Titans as an 11 year old (I won't say a little 11 year old because I don't think he's ever been that) choosing to give up his 'football career' very early on when he was convinced by Pete (Junior Titans) to join with the words "do you want to play for your local football club or do you want to play for England?" Sam probably thought about it for at least 5 minutes and joined Titans' longest standing member, Kurtis Banks (who had been involved as an U11), Diarra Layne, Taiwo Hamilton, Zach Frost, Bradley Powell and of course, at that time they were playing alongside the girls, Hannah Bird, Frankie Patmore and Kenny Hamilton, as U12s, in a time when there was an U13s National League - it was a baptism of fire and they were triumphant in 2 games that season, both against Coventry by 1 point each time; the first (in the orange kit) and last game of the season. They really could have given up there and then but Barry's 'vision' for this team had begun.

    At the start of that season, Barry convinced me to become Team Manager saying that it was “just sending a few emails" ....... hmmmmmm, let me think about that one now.

    The team was joined by Tegan Millar and Jacob Cirtautas - who we spent most of the season trying to get to jump - and Titans U13s took the East Midlands Conference by surprise winning the league, moving into their first playoffs, winning the first game against Liverpool but losing out by a heart wrenching 3 points to London Lewisham Thunder in the quarterfinals.

    On we moved to the U14s season which saw the boy/girl split and the boys spreading their wings as far as Manchester; joined by Jake Chapman previously of Kettering Phoenix and Ben Nailer who had only played basketball for part of the previous season with rivals Thunder but who had played alongside Sam for East Midlands. We didn't win the league, but we did make it to the playoffs again; a mixed bag of emotions on this day - the toughest game we had ever played as a team against London Greenhouse Pioneers in London who beat us emphatically – although I have to say that they had the politest coach we had ever met – but it was only a quick tube ride to the Nike store and Taiwo came back with a better hair cut than when he went.

    On we moved to the first year of the U16s in the North Premier League and following another successful East Midlands Tournament, we saw the return of Zach and were joined by Josh Taylor, Ollie Dominique and Jude Carmichael.

    Sam was lucky enough to have his first experience of playing for his Country against Scotland on his 15th birthday – a day he will never forget, nor I – Pete was quick to tell the story above ;-) The Scottish National Anthem was played that many times that weekend, (U15s & U17s Girls and Boys) that when the Commonwealth Games were on in April, I could hum along.

    This was a year of learning for the U16s in the North Premier League and we finished in the middle of the table, which was not too shabby; a year of long long journeys where there was lots of singing, the longest journey to Newcastle, travelled in a day, where Jude kept us entertained on the journey home with his story of a hamburger … you had to be there …

    Barry also realised that the long road trips were a great opportunity for ‘a meeting’; open sessions, sponsorship, possibly a new kit all came from those trips – so much for just sending a few emails; I always came back with more work than I went.

    We again had players selected for the East Midlands Tournament (Ben, Sam, Ollie & Jude) and four players from East Mids selected into the National Squad; two from Titans (Sam & Jude).

    And so, we headed into this season full of hope (with a new kit from our new sponsorship) knowing that we were probably at our best. Joined by Jamal Jack and a young Tommie Olubisi (who we are hoping will continue with the U16s next season) we knew we were strong and although the dreaded injuries seem to work their way through the team, we had a good run, losing just 3 games; the highlight probably in the last game of 2017 against Manchester Magic when we did what no other team were able to do and beat them. Yeahhhhhhhhhhhh They were' sore' for a long time and will never live that one down.

    Our winning ways had meant a runner up position in the North Premier League giving us a fast ticket into the second round of the playoffs and home advantage against Leicester Riders; a game that showed that sometimes it’s not the opposition that are the difficulty – it’s all about the learning experience - a game won to take us to the quarterfinals again.

    We had met with Ipswich in the Cup run earlier in the season and had lost by 1 point (the day before we beat Manchester Magic – did I tell you we beat them??????) and knew what we had to do. The crowd was amazing; a packed house at Weavers, with a noise level beyond expectations. It was a close game from beginning to end and in a mirror of all those years ago at U13s, we just lost out by 3 points; a gutting loss and the end of an era which saw the players shake hands with every supporter, home and away, and for them to receive such applause from all the crowd.

    What is the point of this blog? – it is to say thank you and good luck - to all the boys and girls that have been part of this journey, to all the parents that have supported the players, to the coaches that have supported Barry in his ‘vision’ and to the volunteers from every corner that have helped to create lasting memories.

    Where is our success? not just in reaching the heights of winning leagues and playing top level basketball, (did I tell you we beat Magic???) but also in helping and watching you all grow into fantastic young men and women, confident, focused, polite, ambitious, strong, funny and intelligent.

    We wish all our players more success than they could hope for in their chosen pathways, whatever that may be, and from a basketball point of view, will be watching:

    Sam and Jacob heading to Reading Rockets; Ben heading to Myerscough; Jude heading to Barking Abbey; Ollie heading to Leicester; Jake, Taiwo and Diarra heading to Derby, Jamal heading to Moulton, Kenny heading to Derby and Lauren and Hannah heading to Charnwood; our Alumni page is going to be busy!!!!

    Good luck in all of your exams – we are so very proud of you - we look forward to the next exciting group of young players creating opportunities for themselves within our basketball family.

  • U11 East Midlands Tournament

    Extremely proud of our Junior Titans who took part in the U11s Tournament. Many congratulations go to the two Ethans and Kai. A fantastic experience for them all.

  • U13 Girls and Boys County Basketball Tournament

    No fewer than 10 Titans players took to the court to represent Northamptonshire at the Inter County U13 Boys and Girls Basketball Tournament held in Northampton.

    The girls finished the tournament unbeaten and the boys finished the day with a 2-2 record. All the players impressed the East Midlands Regional selectors and must congratulate all players that took part; your hard work was evident.

    Titans are very proud that again this year, we have 4 girls and 2 boys selected into the East Midlands Regional Training squad. Congratulations to Alex, Abi, Charly and Imogene for the girls and Joshua and Billy for the boys.

    Well done to all other players selected from Northamptonshire - a great advert for County Basketball.

  • Titans Blog 28/29th April 2018

    Young Titans Crowned As League Champions

    U12s Bucks Association U12s

    NEBC Titans finished off the season in style when the U12s travelled to Aylesbury for the final stage of the Bucks Basketball Association's under 12s league. After a convincing 38-23 semi-final win against Aylesbury DUX, Titans beat Shenley 41-40 in an overtime thriller. The battle for the trophy was played out in front of a packed sports hall. League rules meant that Titans had to start the game 10-0 down, but it didn't take too long for the teams to be on equal terms. It remained close for the rest of the game and Shenley probably thought they had one hand on the trophy as, with the score tied and only three seconds left, they had two free throws to win the game. However, both were missed and the game went to overtime. As had been the case throughout the game, Ethan Mead's defence in the extra period against Shenley's big guy was outstanding. With the game still tied and time running out Ethan Round was fouled driving to the basket. As there was just 0.9 seconds left he only needed one of his two free throws to secure the win. When his first swished through the net the Titans knew they had done enough. Although he missed his second free throw, it didn't matter. The buzzer sounded, Titans were crowned as league champions and the celebrations began.

    U16 Boys Play Off ¼ Final

    Northamptonshire Titans 75-78 Ipswich

    Titans played to a packed and noisy crowd at Weavers Leisure Centre taking on the team that knocked them out of the National Cup by just 1 point; both teams knew they were going to be in a close contest.

    It was Titans that got off to a good start as Ipswich struggled to contain Jacob Cirtautas around the hoop and even though Titans’ defence edged the battle, the tie was high scoring with a 31-23 Titans lead.

    Ipswich changed to a zone defence to combat Cirtautas, this had a devastating effect on Titans as space on the perimeter began to appear, but Titans shooting was below par and with that Titans could only score 7 points in the entire quarter.

    The third saw Ipswich pour in a 12-0 run, halted by a Sam Grant score which spark a Titans 14-0 run to finish the quarter; the game was in the balance at 56-57.

    A repeat of the third saw Ipswich start well and a response from Titans bought the game back as Titans created scores whilst Ipswich hit Titans on the break. In the last two minutes, Ipswich struggled from the line and Titans increased the pressure, but it was the visitors that managed to hold on to the very end.

    Coach Powell said, ‘I asked for everyone’s absolute today and they did not disappoint, the team worked so hard and I could not be prouder’.

    Top Scorers: Grant 20, Cirtautas 18, Nailer 10

    This was an end of an era for this particular group of players as many are now moving on to Basketball Academies across the Country; a testament to the strong performance pathway that Titans provides players of all ages for both girls and boys.

    A fantastic season finale took place on Friday evening in the form of the Titans End of Season Presentation Evening held at Wellingborough School where 200 people attended, and Awards were presented to all teams ranging from the Junior Titans to the Division 2 Women. It was a celebration of the success of the club this season and the success of all the players involved as well as a thank you to all the volunteers involved.

    Open basketball sessions now begin during the off season with the girls sessions taking place at Moulton College on a Wednesday evening 7-9pm and the boys sessions taking place at Weavers Leisure Centre on a Tuesday evening 7-9pm. Please see the website for more details or contact

  • Titans Blog 14/15th April 2018

    U16 Boys 2nd Round National League Playoffs

    Northamptonshire Titans 89-70 Leicester Riders

    In this 2nd round playoff game, Titans took on Leicester Riders in their first ever encounter. Riders opened their account with a downtown three whilst Sam Grant responded with an ‘and 1’; Titans’ aggressive defence was not to the liking of the Officials as the foul count began to mount up, whilst Titans put a 10-0 run together. Team fouls sent Riders to the foul line throughout the final 5 minutes of play, but that did not stop a healthy Titans first quarter lead of 26-14.

    Titans started the second quarter exchanging scores through Josh Taylor and Ben Nailer early on but with Titans continuing to commit fouls, Riders were able to get to the line no less than 16 times in the quarter and the disruption in play certainly impacted on the home side’s performance, as Riders pulled the tie back to within 2 points by halftime.

    In the third, Titans came out firing as they regained the intensity and with conversations by Diarra Layne and Taiwo Hamilton, Titans hit the Riders with a 9-0 run; Titans defence continued to take control and with a couple of back to back scores from Jude Carmichael, Titans retook a firm grasp on the game.

    In the fourth, the duo of Hamilton and Layne poured in a 7-0 run which put the game out of reach for the visitors who to their credit battled to the very end. Titans have established themselves in the top 8 teams in the Country and now face off against Ipswich in the ¼ finals this Saturday at Weavers Leisure Centre, tipping at 2pm.

    Top Scorers: Layne 18, Hamilton 15, Grant 12, Cirtautas 11, Nailer 10

    U14 Boys 2nd Round National League Playoffs

    Manchester Magic 72-62 Northamptonshire Titans

    The U14 boys’ playoff run came to an end when they lost 72-62 away to Manchester, however, what they achieved was nothing short of incredible. Having played against conference opposition all season, this was Titans' first chance to test themselves against one of the top premier league teams. Going into the game, Coach Round was aware of Magic's home record. They had only lost once, to top-of-the-table Birmingham, and they had beaten the other premier league teams by an average of 48 points. Therefore, on paper Titans shouldn't have caused Magic too many problems, but the Titans boys had other ideas. Manchester came out pressing, but this didn't faze Titans. At the end of the first quarter, the score may have been 19-15 in Magic's favour, but it was clear that Titans weren't going to be a pushover - quite the opposite. In the second quarter, Titans demonstrated just how good they are as, led by Isaac Round who amassed 18 first half points, they powered their way to a 38-33 half-time lead leaving the Magic players looking somewhat shell-shocked. In the second half, Manchester's defence became tighter and more physical which limited Titans' scoring opportunities. Although Ben Hooper, Sean Rawlins, Benji Leesing and Oskar Knight battled valiantly for rebounds, Manchester punished Titans for not boxing out on a few occasions in the third period. This, together with some high-quality finishing by Magic's tricky guard gave the hosts a 55-50 lead going into the final quarter. Manchester's physicality was a key factor in the final period and Titans were unable to find the basket as easily as they had done in the first half. Magic had a slender 5-point lead going into the last few minutes which forced Titans to commit fouls to send Magic to the free throw line in the hope that they'd miss their shots, but Manchester held their nerve and hit 3 of 6 on their way to a hard-fought 10-point win. Although Titans’ playoff run had come to an end, they proved that they are one of the best U14 teams in the country. After the game, Coach Round said: "Not many teams come to Manchester and challenge them in the way we did today. Although the loss is disappointing, going toe-to-toe with one of the powerhouses of British basketball in front of a loud and enthusiastic crowd was a great experience." The highlights for Titans were Isaac Round's 24 points, which included going 8 from 9 from the free throw line, and the sharp-shooting of Harry Mitchell, which earned him 12 points.

    U12 Boys Bucks League

    Triple Threat 36-46 Northamptonshire Titans

    The U12 boys had an early start on Sunday morning when they took on Triple Threat at 9:00am in Aylesbury. However, it was worth the trip as they recorded a 46-36 victory and secured a place in the semi-final of the Bucks U12 league. League rules meant that Titans started 10-0 down, but by half time they were 24-22 ahead and, despite the efforts of the opposition, Titans won the remaining two quarters. The two Ethans, Round and Mead, top scored with 17 and 14 points respectively and they were well supported by Will Baker and Dimitris Markrakis who scored 8 and 7. The young Titans now have time to prepare for their semi-final (and hopefully final) which will take place on Sunday 29th April.


U14 Boys

U14 Girls

U14 Boys Purple

U16 Boys Prem

U16s Girls



Junior Titans