The London Lions recovered from a ten-point deficit to maintain their perfect WBBL Championship record against the contending Sheffield Hatters at the Copper Box Arena.
Temi Fagbenle was again a standout player in a closely fought contest, with a double-double of 20 points and 13 rebounds.
The Lions came off the back of an 85-43 thrashing of the Riders yesterday, keeping Leicester scoreless for over eleven minutes during the contest. Traveling to East London was the Sheffield Hatters, who had a chance for revenge since their last match saw London eliminate them from the semi-finals of the Betty Codona Trophy.
After the first 10 minutes of action, the Hatters led 24-22 thanks to a mid-range buzzer beater from Desiree Ramos.
The second quarter saw the visitors take their largest lead of the night, after an unanswered ten-point scoring run. However, by half-time, the lead had been reduced to just five points. After a series of fouls from Sheffield and a Shanice Beckford-Norton and-one, the Hatters’ momentum was halted.
Katsiaryna Snytsina’s three tied the game just under half-way into the third quarter. As Sheffield began to pull away again, Nicolette Fairley committed an unsportsmanlike foul to give the Lions two free throws and a free possession.
Both shots were drained by Abby Meyers and the extra possession was turned into three points by Snytsina to tie the game once more.
A Temi Fagbenle three-pointer saw the Lions take the lead, with Meyers later extending the deficit from the line. This made it 68-63 in favour of the home side ahead of the fourth quarter.
Lions’ guard Faye Endean fouled out of the game with six minutes to go, but she was later followed by Hatters’ starters Emma Eichmeyer and Madison Washington.
Fagbenle went on to make a tough and-one play to take the Lions’ lead to over ten points. She then picked up a steal in the late stages which led to an extra two points – extending the lead further.
The Lions didn’t look back from here and saw out the game for a 92-74 victory.
Another win moves London to 8-0 in the Women’s British Basketball League Championship and the next team to test their unbeaten run will be the visiting Newcastle Eagles on Sunday, February 11th.
While the Sheffield Hatters move down to fourth after suffering their third loss of the season, their overall record of 6-3 still seats them comfortably inside the playoffs.
Watch the full game here.