The Leicester Riders and London Lions both took advantages in their respective BBL Play-Offs Quarter Final ties, with their second legs in Worcester set to be played on Wednesday.
The Riders tipped off first at the Vertu Motors Arena, and despite their opponents, Bristol Flyers, remaining in the game throughout the first half, an incredible 52 point second-half along with their defensive efforts restraining the eight seed team to just 26 points secured them the victory.
Geno Crandall was once again, inspirational, as he led the Riders to victory with 21 points and ten assists – just four less assists than what the Flyers team achieved in total.
The Riders were also supported by a huge performance from Mo Walker off the bench, who dropped 16 points in just over 17 minutes, along with six rebounds while Darien Nelson-Henry, William Lee and Mustapha Heron all reached double-figures for scoring also.
Bristol’s Eric Lockett had a superb game for the losing side, as he came just one rebound away from a double-double after scoring 16 points, being the main route on offence particularly in the first half, while Daniel Edozie dropped ten points off the bench and made an impressive four steals, beating Lockett’s total of three.
After the final buzzer, the Lions geared up to face off with the Cheshire Phoenix, who went toe-to-toe with Lions all game long but coming up short in the final quarter as Vince Macaulay’s team scored five more points to give them a seven point lead heading into Wednesday’s decider.
The ever-reliable Dirk Williams impressed again for London, scoring 22 points, while Justin Robinson showed his experience throughout in a confident display where he scored 17.
The Lions scored 11 three-pointers compared to the Phoenix’ total of two, ultimately helping them to the victory as Williams drained five of those and former NBA forward DeAndre Liggins also contributed one too, as he scored 12 points and contributed seven rebounds and six assists, as well as three big blocks.
Kahron Ross led the Phoenix in scoring and assisting with 13 points and six assists, while Matthew Bryan-Amaning had a good game off the bench, contributing 12 points and five rebounds, with four of them coming on the offensive end.
The second legs will be played on Wednesday 5th May, and you can watch them live on Sky Sports YouTube or on the BBL Player!