Newcastle Eagles and Cheshire Phoenix both secured BBL Championship wins this afternoon while Glasgow Rocks have it all to do following their first leg defeat against London Lions in the BBL Trophy.
The first game of the day saw Glasgow Rocks travel to London Lions in their BBL Trophy semi-final first leg. Lions were dominant throughout as the game finished 90-66 in their Favour. Meaning Glasgow will have to make up 24 points when the sides meet in the second leg on Wednesday.
Deandre Liggins put in a trademark display as he starred for Lions finishing with 28 points. Dirk Williams also had a good game, contributing 15 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. For Rocks, Ronald Delph performed well with 16 points and 8 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough for his team as they fell to a convincing defeat.
Newcastle Eagles comfortably overcame Manchester Giants in the first of two of BBL Champosnhip games this afternoon. Eagles led throughout and raced into an early lead in the first quarter. A lead they consolidated as the match went on as they reached the 100-point mark, eventually winning 101-76.
Rahmon Fletcher was key for Eagles as he put down 23 points and 10 assists in a superb double double performance. Cortez Edwards also had a double double of his own with 20 points and 11 rebounds. The win sees Eagles move within 4 points of league leaders Leicester Riders while the loss for Giants marked their twelfth this season.
Cheshire Phoenix and Sheffield Sharks faced off in the second Championship encounter of the day. Although Phoenix took an early lead the game was tight from the get-go. Phoenix led by 10 going into the final quarter but Sharks ensured they wouldn’t lose without a fight, battling back in to contention as they reduced the gap to 3 with a minute to go.
Phoenix, however, held on to win 75-69. The win now sees them move level on points with Sharks with the same amount of matches played. Antwon Lillard had a game high 21 points for the visitors as his team narrowly missed out. For Phoenix, Jimbo Lull was key with 17 points.
The day before, Surrey Scorchers took a commanding 21 point victory at home over the Glasgow Rocks to secure their fifth win of the Championship season.
The game was in the balance at the end of the first with only one point separating them, in Surrey’s favour.
However, the second quarter was a huge quarter for the Scorchers, leading by as many as 17, as the side found rhythm from three point range, shooting 60% from deep at the half.
Surrey didn’t slow down after the half time interval either, coming out strong again in the third, with guard Tony Hicks scoring seven in the quarter, and the Scorchers outstretched their lead to 22.
The Rocks edged the final quarter by one, but Surrey still provided some spectacular moments, including two fantastic dunks from Wake Forest bound guard Cam Hildreth.
Ryan Richards led the scoring for the Scorchers with 13, and the bench provided an incredible 41 points between them.
The scoring was evenly distributed between everyone on the Scorchers, with eleven of the twelve players who saw action on the court scoring.
It was also a memorable night for Mayo Adeyeye, who scored his first professional points for Surrey, and Martelle McLemore, Emondre Rickman and Hildreth all scored 12 points.
It was a tough night for the Rocks, who sank to their fourteenth defeat of the campaign, keeping them bottom of the standings.
Christian Keeling led scoring for the game with his 14 point performance, but no other player was able to make it into double figures for the visitors.
And on Friday, Kahron Ross’ buzzer beater stunned the Leicester Riders on Friday evening as the Cheshire Phoenix picked up an incredible win, whereas there were impressive wins for Plymouth Raiders and Worcester Wolves.
Ross capped off a great personal game with his incredible three-pointer right at the death in a huge result at the top of the BBL Championship, in a game where Leicester led by as many as 15 points. Plymouth also enjoyed a convincing away win at Newcastle to keep up their impressive run of form with eight wins in nine games. The evening’s final game saw Worcester boost their playoff chances as a late surge saw them past Surrey Scorchers.
The evening’s action tipped off in Cheshire as the Riders looked to extend their league at the top of the BBL Championship. They started the ballgame brightly and built up an early 10-point lead in the first quarter. Cheshire came back with a vengeance however and off the back of a crucial 7-0 run they tied the game at the half.
Corey Johnson and Geno Crandall both enjoyed 21-point outings for the Riders and two late free throws from William Lee looked to have put the Riders in the driver’s seat for two crucial points in the race for the Championship.
Up stepped Kahron Ross who had an incredible 29-point game, and right at the death the ball was kicked out to the captain who drained a massive three-pointer for an enthralling Phoenix win.
It was to be a tough night for the top two teams in the BBL Championship, as Newcastle could not take advantage of Leicester’s fortunes in Cheshire.
The Raiders were looking to carry their momentum into Tyneside and huge turnouts in the middle two periods put them firmly in command of the ballgame going into the final quarter.
Rahmon Fletcher posted another double-double for the Eagles and Evan Maxwell scored a tied game-high 16 points, however an assured team performance from a rampant Raiders side saw them pick up another impressive win. Chris Porter-Bunton stuffed the stat sheet nicely with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists as he led Plymouth to their 11th Championship win of the season.
The evening’s final game saw Worcester Wolves edge Surrey Scorchers in a tightly fought affair as a final quarter surge from the Wolves saw them pick up two crucial points in the playoff race.
The Scorchers started the game well and were led by an inspired Ryan Richards who had 19 points through three periods, and were leading going into the final period.
The Wolves erupted into life during the fourth and final quarter and were led by huge showings from Brandon Anderson and Jordan Williams, with the latter dominating in the paint with a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds as the Wolves picked up a crucial win to give Worcester some breathing space in the playoff spaces.