Two weeks in and league newcomers London City Royals have settled in just fine with three victories to sit top of the BBL Championship, whilst Newcastle Eagles also stay perfect at 2-0.
DBL Sharks Sheffield – Surrey Scorchers
DBL Sharks Sheffield registered their first win of the 2018/19 BBL Championship campaign after prevailing 99-90 over Surrey Scorchers at home.
— British Basketball League (@BBLofficial) September 28, 2018
The teams traded runs throughout, and Sharks were down by two points early in the fourth, but a Mike Tuck three-pointer with five minutes to play sparked a dominant finish. That became an 8-1 burst capped by another Tuck triple and Sharks led 91-84, before they held their visitors scoreless for the final two and a half minutes with Rene Castro-Caneddy scoring the last five points of the game.
“first win of the season, it feels good,” Sheffield Captain Mike Tuck commented. “In my eyes we expected to win that game and that’s the mentality we need to have for the rest of the season. That Manchester game was a hiccup for us and a bit of wake up call for us.”
Castro-Caneddy had 24 and crucial baskets down the stretch, Chris Alexander had 23, whilst Dirk Williams had 15 for Sheffield.
Surrey were led by 17-a-piece from Demario Beck and Tayo Ogedengbe, whilst Josh Steel and Jordan Williams had 16 each.
London Lions – Worcester Wolves
London Lions powered past Worcester Wolves at the Copper Box Arena on Friday night, beating them 82-65 behind a spectacular performance from Ladarius Tabb.
— London Lions (@London_Lions) September 28, 2018
Tabb was the first player this season to score 30 points, shooting 66% inside and making 6/6 at the free-throw line, and adding nine rebounds; while Brandon Peel had a double-double of 12 points and 11 boards.
Lions led by five points at the half, but produced a big third quarter run to take control. Ladarius Tabb scored six points in a 14-5 run to make the score 55-40, and there was no way back from there for the visitors who were stifled by London’s defence, with Tabb continuing to score emphatically late on.
Jordan Whelan led Worcester with 18 point and 10 rebounds, whilst Darrell Combs had 12 points.
It was the third game of the season already for both teams, with Lions moving to 2-1 and Wolves the reverse.
Bristol Flyers – DBL Sharks Sheffield
Bristol Flyers avenged opening weekend defeat in front of their home fans to pick up their first victory of the season, thanks to a spectacular 92-60 win over the visiting DBL Sharks Sheffield.
After a cagey opening quarter, the hosts found their rhythm to produce some entertaining basketball and give the home fans plenty to cheer about, as they knocked down 11 three pointers.
“A team performance on both ends of the court,” Bristol Head Coach Andreas Kapoulas commented.
“We shared the ball very well on the offensive end, finishing with 27 assists, kept our turnovers low and defensively, particularly in the second half, we were very good. To keep a team like Sheffield to 10 points in the third quarter, 24 overall in the second half, just a solid team performance with all 10 players contributing.”
Jalan McCloud set the tone for Bristol, collecting a team-high 21 points and six rebounds. Fred Thomas also impressed, scoring 17 points and added six rebounds and five assists.
Dirk Williams had 17 points for Sharks, Chris Alexander had 14, and Rene Castro-Caneddy 11.
London City Royals – Surrey Scorchers
London City Royals remained unbeaten in the BBL Championship after overcoming Surrey Scorchers 91-85 on their home debut at Crystal Palace to move to 2-0, ahead of travelling to Manchester Giants on Sunday.
It was a third defeat in a row for Scorchers, as they were overpowered in the fourth quarter against their local rivals.
The teams could barely be separated throughout, until Royals dominated the fourth quarter. The hosts hit a trio of three-pointers – two from Will Neighbour and one from Ed Lucas – in a 14-3 surge to lead 84-78 inside the final two minutes.
It was a successful start for Royals’ two new Americans who were announced earlier in the day, giving them 26 points off the bench between Deyshonee Much and Lamar Wofford-Humphrey.
Matthew Bryan-Amaning played through foul trouble to post 20 points in just 22 minutes, shooting 70% from the field; while Will Neighbour posted his second double-double in a row, 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Tayo Ogedengbe had 24 to lead Surrey, with Steel adding 22.
Manchester Giants – London City Royals
London City Royals moved to 3-0 with a hard fought 92-86 victory over Manchester Giants.
— London City Royals (@LDNCityRoyals) September 30, 2018
The visitors picked up their second win in as many days to move clear at the top of the Championship standings, as they outscored the Giants 17-9 over the final four minutes and registered 26 assists on the game.
Matthew Bryan-Amaning continued his strong start to the season with 29 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, whilst Will Neighbour and Ed Lucas added 15 each.
“Not many teams come straight into the league and start this well,” Lucas said. “We’re just trying to ride this wave and hopefully it continues next week at Newcastle.”
Manchester were led by 23 from Mike McCall, and Willie Clayton added 18 points and 13 rebounds.
Radisson RED Glasgow Rocks – Esh Group Eagles Newcastle
Esh Group Eagles Newcastle enjoyed a fruitful journey north of the border, picking up a comfortable 100-85 victory over Radisson RED Glasgow Rocks.
The visitors collected their second win of the season thanks to an eye-catching offensive display that the hosts simply could not match. A game defining 17-0 run for the Eagles in the third quarter put any hopes of a home win firmly to bed.
Darius Defoe led the scoring for Eagles with 25 points, adding 8 rebounds, Rahmon Fletcher had 24 points and 13 assists, whilst missing just four shots, with Victor Moses adding 24 points and 9 rebounds.
Glasgow were led by 21 from Kenny Carpenter and Bouna Ndiaye had 18 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists and 3 blocks.
“Defence, defence, defence,” a frustrated Kieron Achara said after the game. “We cannot let teams put up a hundred points on us, it is completely unacceptable.”
Cheshire Phoenix – Plymouth Raiders
A strong final quarter helped Cheshire Phoenix pick up their second win of the season, as the home side defeated Plymouth Raiders 94-88.
Cheshire Phoenix Basketball come out on top 94-88!
— Plymouth Raiders (@officialraiders) September 30, 2018
With the game in the balance for much of the contest, it took until the final moments for the home side to pull away, closing the game on a 10-4 run with Dii’Jon Allen-Jordan scoring eight of Cheshire’s final 10 points.
Jimario Rivers led the team in scoring with 18 points, while Louis Sayers was a game-changing spark off the bench – scoring 16 points on just seven shots. Dil’Jon Allen-Jordan also proved instrumental, collecting 16 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists.
Donte Nicholas led Plymouth with 33 points – a BBL season-high – adding 6 rebounds and 5 assists, whilst Joonas Jarvelainen added 19 rebounds.
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