Worcester Wolves rattled to their second road win in a row after a 76-61 victory at Surrey Scorchers on Sunday with a performance hailed as outstanding by their coach Paul James.
Wolves blasted out to a fifteen-point first quarter lead, maintained the advantage until half-time, before putting their foot on the gas again to surge out to an overwhelming 59-33 by the end of the third period.
“We executed our game plan superbly,” said James. “We planned to control the tempo of the game and conserve our energy, and that’s just what we did.
“To hold Surrey to only eleven points in the first quarter and nine in the third was an outstanding display of composure. We focussed on limiting them to single shots in their attacks and, aside from easing off in the last quarter, our defence was spot on.”
It was 6-6 at midway through the opening period before Wolves exploded into action. Alex Navajas sank a three-pointer to break the tie and Elvisi Dusha impacted immediately from the bench with a steal and a subsequent score.
Dusha’s next involvement was to lay on a triple for George Beamon, before attempting his own shot from afar. Even when Dusha’s attempt went astray, Dallin Bachynski was first to the rebound and put-back for a 16-7 lead.
Beamon, Dusha and Navajas all further increased their points tallies to finalise a dominant 26-11 first quarter.
It would take nearly six minutes for Scorchers to progress their side of the scoreboard, by which time their visitors had accelerated into a 33-13 advantage.
By five minutes into the second-half Wolves still held control at 51-26. Repeated Surrey attacks were nullified by intensity on defence. As their inability to penetrate grew, so their frustration translated into poor passes and shot-clock violations.
Former Worcester guard Caylin Raftopoulas shone briefly for his team with a trio of three-pointers but could not prevent Wolves’ cruise to overall victory.
Beamon, Dusha and Navajas led the scoring with 14 points apiece, supported by 11 points for Bachynski and 10 for Brandon Parrish.
Dusha’s display also included three steals and half-a-dozen assists, drawing praise from James, saying: “That was Elvisi’s best game in a Wolves vest. He was disciplined and got the right passes to the right places.”
Wolves return to the University of Worcester Arena this Friday 01 December (tip off 7.30) to greet Plymouth Raiders, tickets are available here
“We’re going to prepare well again for our next match. We worked very hard last week in our preparations and it paid off. We’re now coming back to Worcester with two wins in the bag and want to give our home fans another performance to cheer about on Friday,” added James.
Match report by Colin Taylor
Image credit Razorlight Imagery