BBL Trophy, Semi-Final, Second Leg
London Lions 100-105 Manchester Giants (20-20, 52-51, 81-75)
201-179 on aggregate
London Lions secured their place in the BBL Trophy Final with a 201-179 aggregate victory over Manchester Giants, despite a Second Leg defeat.
The Lions did the damage in the tie with their 74-101 road win in the First Leg and remain on course to add to their BBL Cup title, while the Giants fall at the last four hurdle for the second time this season.
The game started fast by both teams evidenced by the 20-20 scoreline at the end of the first quarter. In the second, Willie Clayton for Manchester picked up fouls and would eventually foul out at half time on the back of a Technical foul called on him.
The Giants led by as many as five points, but the Lions through Paul Guede and Justin Robinson led 52-51 at the break.
The Lions had all 12 players in the game, Jonathan James in particular wowing the crowd with dunks and drives, even 17-year-old Aaron Badibo got a taste of BBL action. Captain Joe Ikhinmwin hit a three pointer in the last minute before a similar long-range effort put the Giants ahead by 5, a missed attempt and the Lions let the game play out, secure in their 22 point aggregate victory and now move on to the BBL Trophy Final in Glasgow on the 10th of March.
Key stat – Manchester had an efficient shooting night at the Copper Box as they put up 55% from the floor including going 11 of 22 from 3-point range.
Butler led the way for Giants with 24 points including some key scores late on, while Bankevics and Granic also hit 20+ points as the trio combined for 67 of their side’s points. Ladarius Tabb hit 22 for the home side and Brandon Peel shot 75% from the field on the way to 19 points, Andre Lockhart contributed 4 of 5 triples for his 16 points.
Lions scorers – Tabb 22, Peel 19, Lockhart 16, Okoro 10, Robinson 8, Guede 8, James 7, Larkai 5, Ikhinmwin 3, Bristol 2, Roberts 0, Badibo 0.
Giants Scorers – Butler 24, Bankevics 23, Granic 20.