QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Playing Tuesday is unusual, but in many ways it’s better to be playing quickly again when coming off a loss.
It will also be an extremely tough challenge, since Sheffield have a phenomenal home record this season
and are still very much in the mix for the league title.”
SHARKS TAKE EAGLES ON THE BUZZER AS BJ LIGHTS UP THE EISS
Just days after being dumped out of the BBL Trophy, Newcastle Eagles received a major blow to their league title aspirations after sustaining a dramatic 94-92 loss to a resilient Sheffield Sharks as BJ Holmes nailed a last-gasp, game-winning triple.
With just four minutes remaining, the Eagles were in control and had an eleven point lead. The champagne corks were ready to pop for Flournoy, who had racked up yet another major record by surpassing the club record for assists, previously held by his close friend and Eagles’ Hall of Famer, TJ Walker.
Flournoy dished up nine assists and moved on to 1,475, to add yet another line to his stellar and unparalleled list of accomplishments.
Unfortunately for him, this was a night all about Sharks maintaining their title challenge and coming back from the brink.
There had been very little to separate both teams in a relatively even-handed opening, with no side able to make a hugely decisive early burst and Sharks’ Olu Babalola keeping the teams locked on 21-21 with a basket against his ex-employers.
However, Malik Cooke was proving hard to stop and the Eagles’ danger-man put his team 45-39 in front at the interval by wrapping up 15 first-half points.
Sharks again came roaring back when the action resumed and Holmes put the home side ahead at 51-50, only for Drew Lasker to come alive for the Eagles, who restored a six point lead heading into the last ten minutes.
Their good work continued and when Scott Martin made it 85-74, it looked like the Eagles would inevitably see it through. But, they left the door open and a 15-3 run by Sharks resulted in Holmes putting them in front at 89-88, with less than 30 seconds remaining.
Whilst the visitors responded to regain the lead during the closing seconds, Holmes had the last word to seal a memorable win and boldly underline the Sharks’ title credentials.
Tuesday 25th FEBRUARY 2014
CH 19:30 Sheffield Sharks v Newcastle Eagles // Sharks Win 94-92
BIG WINS FOR EAGLES, RIDERS & GIANTS
Esh Group Eagles Newcastle sparked some drama in the race for the top spot in the BBL Championship standings by registering an 86-78 victory against the first-placed Worcester Wolves on Friday evening, which was much more successful for away teams, as the guests celebrated in all three games.
Following the win, in which Charles Smith paced the Newcastle club with 19 points and 13 rebounds, Eagles improved to an 18-5 record, while Wolves maintained the first place, but dropped to 20-4.
Elsewhere, Rashad Hassan double-doubled with 27 points and 12 rebounds, as Leicester Riders defeated London Lions 99-71 in London and aren’t far behind from the league leaders with a 16-6 mark.
Manchester Giants earned a much-needed 111-105 victory against Durham Wildcats to ignite some hope into their playoff hopes. David Aliu collected a game-high 38 points, while Stefan Gill added 27 in a winning effort.
Friday 28th FEBRUARY 2014
CH 19:00 Durham Wildcats v Manchester Giants // Giants Win 105-111
CH 19:30 London Lions v Leicester Riders // Riders Win 71-99
CH 19:30 Worcester Wolves v Esh Group Eagles Newcastle // Eagles Win 78-86
KNIGHTS COME CLOSE BUT STILL NO CIGAR
Leicester Riders are refusing the give up their BBL Championship title lightly as they made it two wins from two games this weekend on Saturday night.
The Riders may have been expected to beat second from bottom Surrey United but they had to work hard to finally see off their visitors 74-55. Rashad Hassan led their scoring with 27 points.
London Lions kept their grip on fifth place with a 93-89 victory at basement side Birmingham Knights.
The Knights again came close to their first victory this season but were eventually closed out from the line by the Lions despite Brent Benson’s 23 points for the hosts.
In the mid-table battle in Devon it was Cheshire Phoenix who came out on top 92-84 against Plymouth University Raiders.
Victor Moses scored 22 points for Phoenix who enjoyed a 52-36 half time advantage before holding off the Raiders after the interval. Donald Robinson led the was for Plymouth with 27 points.
Saturday 1st MARCH 2014
CH 19:30 Birmingham Knights v London Lions // Lions Win 89-93
CH 19:30 Leicester Riders v Surrey United // Riders Win 74-55
CH 19:30 Plymouth University Raiders v Cheshire Phoenix // Phoenix Win 84-92
GLASGOW ROCKS DEFEATED BY DURHAM WILDCATS
Durham Wildcats were the biggest winners in the BBL Championship on Sunday evening, as they climbed to the seventh spot in the league standings, defeating Glasgow Rocks, one of their closest pursuers in the playoff race.
Having led from start to finish, Wildcats registered a 79-67 victory at the Emirates Arena, with Odiba Attah leading the winners with a game-high 18 points.
Meanwhile, Manchester Giants made it four wins in the five games with a convincing 105-91 triumph over the winless Birmingham Knights. David Aliu was once again the key player for Giants, scoring 29 points.
Sunday 2nd MARCH 2014
CH 17:00 Glasgow Rocks v Durham Wildcats // Wildcats Win 67-79
CH 17:30 Manchester Giants v Birmingham Knights // Giants Win 105-91
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