Leeds Force wrote another chapter in the club’s history as they secured their first ever top flight league win.
Leeds were on impressive form as they saw off league rivals Surrey Heat 73-61 in front of a vocal Force crowd.
The hosts exploded out of the blocks in the opening quarter in confident fashion as they looked to impose themselves early on.
With some strong possessions at both ends of the floor Leeds had gained a 12-point lead by the mid-point of the opening quarter.
This was further extended to 19 points on the back of seven opening period points from Bethune (26-7).
Surrey got their offense started in the second quarter as Leeds struggled to keep their opening pace.
United’s centre Knutson looked to take control of the game with some strong rebounding on both ends of the floor.
This enabled Surrey to bring Leeds to within 13 points at the half time break (37-24).
Leeds started the third period brightly as great ball movement created opportunities for Branimir Mikulic to score from range, on his way to eight third period points.
This scoring surge had pushed the Force back out to a 23 point lead at the mid-point of the period. Surrey however gathered pace through the quarter and finished strongly reducing the deficit to just 18 points by the end of the quarter (58-40).
Surrey kept their momentum going in the final quarter, as they looked to fight their way back into the game. Despite a late scoring run from United Leeds were able to close out the game in style with Will Hall converting several tough interior shots.
Hall led all scorers for Leeds with 23 points supported by an impressive 13 point and 14 rebound display from Mikulic. Surrey’s offensive output was led by Dusha Elvisi with 15 points.
Leeds will now prepare for their first ever televised game on Sunday against the Riders in Leicester before returning home next Friday for another league game against Bristol Flyers.