2014-15 British Basketball League round up (week 25)

On a weekend where Cheshire Phoenix guaranteed their place in the playoffs, London Lions and Glasgow Rocks both won to strengthen their post-season bids. 

The weekend didn’t get off to a great start for Cheshire, who lost 119-92 at Newcastle Eagles on Friday. 

Behind a double-double of 28 points and 11 rebounds from Scott Martin, the Eagles broke open a close game in the second quarter, outscoring the Phoenix 37-19 for a 62-43 lead. 

With Andres Jones chipping in with 26 points and Charles Smith adding 24, the Eagles would extend their lead at one stage to 33 points. 

Cheshire got back to winning ways Sunday as they defeated Surrey United, 97-63, behind strong performances from Taylor King (22 points & 10 rebounds) and Demond Watt (21 & 15), after Cheshire outscored Surrey 52-20 in the second half. 

Behind a game-high 26 points from Kramer Knutson, it was the visitors who got off to the better start, leading 23-16 after the opening quarter and only trailing 45-43 at the interval. 

London Lions bounced back from their Trophy semi-final exit to record two wins at the weekend that moved them into sole possession of fifth place. 

On Thursday, it was 23 points from Drew Sullivan that propelled the Lions to an 86-73 victory over Manchester Giants, but on Sunday it was Makal Stibbins’ time to shine. 

Stibbins had 32 points as the Lions fought off a determined effort from Plymouth Raiders to record a 94-83 win. 

There were no signs of rust on Sunday evening as Glasgow Rocks won 91-82 at Manchester Giants, the Rocks’ first game in 18 days.

Rocks won their fifth straight, leading throughout, and are just two points behind London in the standings.

Tayo Ogedengbe led the Rocks with 18 points, while both Paul Egwuonwu and Kieron Achara finished with identical double-doubles of 14 points and 11 rebounds.
It was a disappointing weekend for the Raiders who lost in overtime, 93-88, at Sheffield Sharks on Friday.

The victory moved the Sharks up to seventh and it came after they fought back from a ten-point deficit with six minutes remaining in regulation.

“I don’t think there was a particular turning point to the game, I just think certain guys really stepped up for us in the fourth quarter,” said Sharks’ Mike Tuck, who finished with 13 points.

“Nick Lewis finished some big time plays for us and John Barber made a huge three to help get us to overtime.

“A great win for us, it gives us two in a row and helps build up our confidence.”

Lewis led the Sharks with 24 points, while Mike Cook added 21.

Alex Owumi had 25 points as Worcester Wolves won for the third time in a row with an 89-73 defeat of Durham Wildcats.

Robertas Bitinas had 18 points in his first start for the Wolves, while Rob Thurman chipped in with a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds.

David Buchberger had a season-high 25 points for the short-handed Wildcats, while Ralph Bucci just missed out on a triple-double; recording 11 points, 12 rebounds and 9 assists.

Finally, Leicester Riders enjoyed a fourth straight Championship win, Rashad Hassan leading the way with 18 points as the Riders won 81-68 at Bristol Flyers.