BBL Weekend Round Up

Lehmon ColbertThe BBL Trophy final looks set to be a repeat of the Cup final, with UCP Marjon Plymouth Raiders already through to the title games and Newcastle Eagles virtual certainties after a 32 point win at One Health Sharks Sheffield.

Prestige Homes MK Lions had won the Friday’s first leg 87-81 thanks mainly to 31 Demarius Bolds points, but the Raiders made home-court advantage count in Sunday’s second leg.

Raiders’ forward Lehmon Colbert was delighted after his side won 107-99 in overtime against to take the tie 188-186 on aggregate.

“I’m pretty happy, we played well and everyone chipped in tonight and bought into the system” he said. “We needed to slow [Demarius] Bolds down and make the other guys try to beat us, and it worked. It means a lot to be in a final, I always want to win.

“We’ve got Newcastle again, and the guys are looking forward to it. Last time wasn’t the way we wanted things to turn out, I wouldn’t say it was an embarrassment, but we obviously want to do better than that.”

Jeremy Bell was the hero for the Raiders, scoring the final six points in regulation time to force the extra period and then added a further ten points in overtime to finish with a game-high 32 points.

Thirty-two was obviously the number of the weekend as Eagles recorded a stunning 116-84 victory at Sharks to virtually guarantee themselves a place in the two-leg final. Led by 37 points – including 6/10 from three-point land – from Joe Chapman, Fabulous Flournoy’s side never looked back after a second period which saw them outscore the hosts 32-12.

The second leg takes place in Newcastle on Friday as the Eagles look to finish the job.

Flournoy’s team also had cause to celebrate on Saturday night as they won their top of the table clash 102-100 at Worcester Wolves. Chapman took his tally for the weekend to an impressive 76 points with 39 for the Eagles while Charles Smith chipped in with 28 points, including what proved to be the winning basket with 11 seconds remaining.

Wolves had lead for the vast majority of the contest but they found themselves behind in the dying seconds. They had the opportunity to win the contest, but the three-point attempt from Tommy Freeman fell well short with four seconds remaining and the Eagles ran out the clock to hold on for the all-important victory to increase the gap at the top of the table to six points over the Wolves and the rest of the chasing pack.

Saturday’s other game saw Jelson Homes DMU Leicester Riders complete a miserable weekend for the Shakes with a 74-64 BBL Championship victory at the John Sanford Centre. Cameron Rundles and Ayron Hardy led the scoring for the Riders with 20 points apiece, but Justin Dobbins led all scorers in the contest with 21 points for the Sharks.

Cheshire Jets snapped a four game losing and kept their BBL Championship play-off hopes alive with an 83-72 win at neighbours Mersey Tigers on Friday. In a game that was tight throughout, the Jets were led by 23 points and 6 assists from Adam Brown while Matt Schneck had a double-double of 17 points and 11 rebounds. Myles Hesson led the Tigers with 18 points and as many rebounds.

Finally, it was back to winning ways on Sunday evening for Sterling Davis and the Glasgow Rocks team as they shrugged off foul trouble to win 86-75 against visitors Guildford Heat. Rocks’ guard Mychal Green led all scorers with 22 points with Drew Lasker leading Heat with 15.