Worcester Wolves continue to demonstrate that they are currently one of the hottest sides in the British Basketball League after sweeping to their tenth win from their last twelve games with a 99-80 triumph at Leeds Force on Friday.
A week ago, Wolves demolished Force 112-62, but it was a much more resilient Leeds outfit that took the court in front of their own fans. By midway through the third quarter Worcester held just a slender 62-59 lead, before proceeding to score nearly twice as many points as their hosts over the remainder of the evening.
The teams traded buckets in the early going, with Wolves edging 21-20 ahead as the first quarter wound down. As the ball was passed around from player to player, it was Maurice Walker who found it in his hands with the shot-clock about to expire but steeled himself to sink a rare three-pointer.
Former Worcester forward Disraeli Lufadeju began the second period with a double of scores to draw matters back together at 26-26. Minutes later Lufadeju blotted his copybook when being dispossessed by Jermel Kennedy who galloped up-court for a spectacular tomahawk jam.
A 52-44 half-time advantage was insufficient to dampen Leeds enthusiasm, with seven quick points from Jermaine Sanders helping them back into contention.
But Force coach Matt Newby attracted a technical foul from the referees, allowing Marek Klassen to slot home the resultant free throw and Trevor Setty to drain a triple on the subsequent bonus possession.
Trey Zeigler and Danny Huffor confidently stepped forward for a series of scores, with Leeds’s turnovers and their inability to break through Worcester’s defensive walls finally deciding the contest.
Wolves coach Paul James praised his team’s resilience, saying: “Leeds shoot the ball well on their own court. We knew they would be a different proposition from the side we beat by fifty points last week. We showed character and toughness to get the job done today.”
Klassen and Huffor led the scoring with 19 and 18 points respectively. Setty notched 16 points, followed by Walker and Zeigler on 14 apiece. Kennedy’s 11 points rounded out six players tallying impressive double-figure returns.
Top-of-the-table Leicester Riders visit the University of Worcester Arena next Friday, 24 March (tip off 7.30 pm). “I’m anticipating a fantastic game,” added James. “Us and Leicester have been the form teams of the last couple of months. We’re expecting our biggest crowd of the season to come along to what should be a great night.”
Tickets for the game are available here