Sheffield Sharks and Leeds Force suffer BBL defeats

Defeats for Sharks and Force.
Defeats for Sharks and Force.
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Newcastle Eagles made it eight wins from eight in the BBL Championship but needed to survive a late scare against Sheffield Sharks.

Fab Flournoy’s side were cruising to victory before a late fightback made it a one-point game in the closing stages of the contest.

Newcastle raced out to a 13-2 start and dominated the first half with 33 points in the second as they led by 16 at the break. The lead was still at 17 heading into the fourth, but the visitors rallied to close within a single point at 93-92 before the Eagles closed out the win with a 7-1 finish.

Eagles’ Jaysean Paige was in top form in the first half with 23 points heading into the interval and would finish with 28 points, six rebounds and 10 assists. On the defensive end, Zarko Jukic starred with 5 blocks to go with 16 points on 8-of-10 shooting, while Kai Williams - 12 points, 9 rebounds - neared a double-double.

Plymouth Raiders produced a blister third quarter to fend off Leeds Force and claim an impressive 94-80 victory. The Raiders were made to work hard in the first half, but proved to have too much fire power and pulled away down the stretch.

After a back and forth opening half, the home side stamped their authority on the contest with a stunning 20-5 run to begin the third quarter.

The blitz all but sealed the game for the hosts.