Worcester Wolves shot down Bristol Flyers 88-56 on Friday to record back-to-back victories for the first time this season in the British Basketball League.
As in last week’s win at Leeds Force, a firm stand on defence laid the foundations for another clear-cut victory. Flyers were held to a paltry dozen points in the first quarter and could barely double that figure by half-time, leaving them little chance of keeping up with a Worcester side surging in confidence.
Maurice Walker, an undoubted catalyst for Wolves’ improved form, tallied 27 points and 13 rebounds to register his fourth successive double-double return since arriving at the club. Alex Navajas and Danny Huffor supplied 15 and 13 points respectively, while Ashton Khan jumped up from the bench with 11 points.
It would take over three minutes for Bristol to get on the scoreboard, by which time Walker had taken a couple of baskets before making way for Navajas after committing two early fouls. Five points from Navajas kept up the pressure in an 18-5 lead and forward Trevor Setty joined the party with a double of three-pointers.
Navajas showed his versatility by stepping back to float home consecutive outside shots and finalise a devastating 30-12 first period.
There was no let up after the re-start. Khan knifed through defenders for an easy lay-up while Huffor set up camp at the halfway line to twice pick the pockets of Bristol attackers and convert the proceeds.
Reserve Mark Jacobs typified Worcester’s swagger when scoring on his first touch of the ball and then taking his place in the defensive wall that blocked Flyers’ Greg Streete from dunking home a half-time buzzer-beater.
A commanding 54-26 advantage was still not enough for Wolves. Walker settled into a pattern of dominating play at Bristol’s basket and joining his team mates at the other hoop to turn back any assaults. Flyers’ Daniel Edozie was harassed into an embarrassing missed slam, warning his side off against any further attempts of a comeback.
Coach Paul James joined in with the applause of a beaming home crowd to declare his satisfaction, saying: “That has to be our best performance of the season. We dominated from start-to-finish.
“Mo has made a huge difference to our structure. Teams are forced to collapse on him on the inside, but that only opens up more space for our outside shooters to take advantage of.”
Wolves will face off against Flyers again at the University of Worcester Arena on Friday 16 December. James stated that the fortnight’s break will not be allowed to undermine his team’s resurgence, saying: “Today was a tremendous team effort, but there will be no let up. If anything, we will work harder than if we had a game. Players are now playing in their correct positions, we cannot let slip the way we are performing right now.”