BBL Cup, South Group
London Lions 103-69 Bristol Flyers (23-15, 50-39, 76-52)
London Lions are one game away from qualifying for the BBL Cup Quarter Finals, having overcome their second to last game of their BBL Cup campaign, in a dominant win over Bristol Flyers, 103-69.
Team leaders Brandon Peel, Justin Robinson and Jules Dang-Akodo combined for 55-points, landing Lions an emphatic 34-point win in Wednesday night’s game.
Now only one game remains in the South Group, and Lions will have to battle it out against Surrey Scorchers on Saturday night to clinch their Quarter Final Spot, in a winner takes all.
Flyers fell behind early with Lions getting inside scoring from their frontcourt of Brandon Peel, Dii’Jon Allen-Jordan and Alioune Tew. Gentrey Thomas got the first points on the board for Bristol with a driving lay-up. Peel quickly got back to work in the paint for another score. After a 10-2 score line, Coach Kapoulas called for time. With baskets hard to come by for Flyers, Lions opened up a 23-15 lead by the end of the first period.
A strong start to the second quarter saw Flyers cut the margin to just two points. Bradley and Raphell Thomas-Edwards scoring on back-to-back possessions from strong drives to the basket.
Reigning league MVP Justin Robinson responded with a smooth basket for the home team. Brandon Peel hit a three. A final Lions three-pointer from Sam Toluwase gave Lions a double digit lead at the half, 50-39.
Flyers hit a three in response to Peel’s basket to start the second half and Lions Coach Macaulay called time out with less than a minute played. The Lions went on a 9-0 run from there and were unplayable. Peel poured in 11 points in the period. Robinson was hot from outside, while Flyers chased shadows, Superb cameo’s from Captain Joe Ikhinmwin and Jordan Whelan showed the calibre of the 11 man Lions squad, every member on the score sheet. The quarter finished 76-52.
Lions dispelled any hopes of a late comeback with another scoring run early in the fourth quarter sparked by Jules Dang Akodo. Great passing on offence and stifling defence were the key for the home side. With the margin over 30 points, Flyers battled throughout the remainder of the game but were unable to make significant inroads. Lions big Jordan Jackson punctuated the win with a fierce two-handed dunk, 103-69.
Flyers finish the group stage of the BBL Cup with a 6-4 record and fall to third place behind Worcester whilst the Lions now face Surrey Scorchers on Saturday in what has turned out to be the first knock out game of the BBL Cup. Lions will need to win if they want to claim the last place in the Quarter-Finals, a trip to the Leicester Riders on the 29th of November.
Tickets for Saturday’s game are available at ticketmaster.co.uk.
Report; Duncak Hooper, Pic Joe Ikhinmwin Courtesy, Graham Hodges