2014 – Leopards silence Thunder
A dominant first half performance paved the way for Leopards to return from Worthing Thunder with an 89-72 victory, on Saturday. Robert Youngblood’s side never looked back after a 12-0 run to start the game, and to complete a perfect night for the Big Cats the three sides above them in the Division One table all lost.
Howard Crawford led five Leopards in double figures with 22 points and eight rebounds in just 25 minutes of action. Kris Clark had seven boards, five assists and four steals to go with his 15 points, while Andre Lockhart marked his debut with 12 points before fouling out early in the fourth period. Carl Josey and Courtney Van Beest each had 11 points, adding six and seven rebounds respectively, while Shaun Durant battled foul trouble all night but finished with ten boards to go with his four points.
It took over two minutes to break the deadlock, but when Josey drained a three to open the scoring it started a 12 point tear that put Leopards in the driving seat for the rest of the game. Despite being forced to sit Durant down after he was called for two fouls in the first 72 seconds, Crawford and Clark both added to the lead before Lockhart scored from downtown and Josey wrapped up the run with a drive to the basket.
Rory Spencer finally got the hosts on the score with four and a half minutes gone before splitting a pair of free-throws, but that was the final time in the game that Leopards’ lead dipped into single figures, and a Crawford basket followed by an Ish Fontaine three sent the visitors into the first break with a 22-9 lead.
Lawrence Brown opened the second period scoring after Lockhart had grabbed a rebound and the lead reached 15 when Josey drained from the Land of Plenty with two minutes gone Durant was called for his third foul in under six minutes of action but there was no stopping Leopards as scores from Crawford and Clark made it a 20 point game going into the final three minutes of the half.
American forward Spencer provided his only highlight of the night when he attempted to dunk despite being nowhere the basket, and it was Clark who had the final say when he hit a free-throw to put Leopards 41-20 ahead at half-time.
Crawford scored the first six Leopards’ points of the second half and although a Bud Johnston and-one made it 51-35 at the five minute mark in the third period, Brown took the lead back up to 18. Johnston scored six quick points after Josey picked up personal and technical fouls after another baffling decision, but Van Beest converted a three-point play and Fontaine struck from downtown to send Leopards into the final break 63-50 ahead.
Worthing never got any closer than that it in the fourth period as Lockhart and Crawford both hit jump shots to open the quarter before Clark hit a triple to make it a 16 point game. Ronnie Baker stole the ball and converted a lay-up as the lead ballooned to 24 with 5:28 on the clock, and Youngblood was able to run his bench in the final minutes as Leopards closed out their 11th league win in 15 games.
Spencer finished with a 19-point, ten rebound double-double for the hosts with Johnston adding 15 points.
2009 – London Leopards 95 Tees Valley Mohawks 90
EBL Division One
2008 – Leopards crash against Rockets
Reading Rockets 77 (25,48,61) Leopards 55 (19,29,43)
A poor performance saw Leopards suffer their fourth league defeat of the season on Friday night as they crashed against title-chasing Rockets.
The Big Cats scored only two of their 17 three-point attempts, and managed just 40 percent from two-pointers. With the home side also out-rebounding them 54-39, it was a poor all-round performance from Jon Burnell’s side.
Despite that they remain in fourth place, with games in hand over the sides immediately below them. Carl Latham-Henry again led the Leopards scoring with 17 points, while Errol Seaman collected a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds.
Rockets opened the scoring through David Watts, who went on to top score with 24 points, but a Latham-Henry “and-one” gave Leopards what proved to be their only lead of the night. Scores from Matt Eames, Seaman and Latham-Henry kept Leopards on level terms at 9-9, and another Latham-Henry score kept the teams level at 15-15 with six minutes gone before an 8-1 run from the home side put them in charge.
Sam Salter broke the run with a trey, but it was Reading who went into the first break with a 25-19 lead as the impressive Danny Carter wrapped up the first period scoring. The second quarter proved to be key as the Big Cats were outscored 23-10, and they never looked capable of fighting back from a 19-point first half deficit.
Only Latham-Henry and Laws scored for the visitors in the first four minutes, and although Salter and Fola Adeleke each managed a single free-throw, Rockets continued to built the lead and they went into the locker room with a comfortable lead.
Whatever coach Burnell said at half-time clearly had some effect as Leopards opened the second half strongly, and with Laws, Salter, Latham-Henry and Seaman all scoring, the deficit was cut to 52-37 by the midway stage of the third quarter.
Salter drained another shot, but a farcical hold up while Reading attempted to get the wrong player to take a pair of free-throws seemed to disrupt Leopards rhythm, and despite late scores from Latham-Henry and Seaman, the visitors trailed 61-43 at the finalMatt Collins opened the fourth period with a basket, and a trey from Adeleke sparked the visitors into life. Seaman and Latham-Henry were also on target as the Big Cats cut the deficit to 12. However that was as close as they got, and as Reading spent most of the rest of the game at the foul line, the home side scored 14 unanswered points to wrap the victory and send the Leopards home empty handed.
Leopards: C Latham-Henry 17, E Seaman 14, F Adeleke 8, S Salter 7, G Laws 5, M Collins 2, M Eames 2, L Volskis, R Lloyd, A Scotland-Williamson (DNP)
2020 – Cavs blitz Leopards
A disappointing performance saw Leopards go down 102-72 against Thames Valley Cavaliers at a packed Oaklands College, on Saturday Cavs have one of the most potent offences in NBL Division One and the Big Cats never looked capable of slowing them down as they poured in 35 first period points and led by as many as 38 in fourth period.
The Big Cats were led by Orlan Jackman’s 20 point, 13 rebounds, with the England international adding four assists. Osvaldas Gaizuaskas and Elvisi Dusha marked their home debuts with 13 and ten points respectively, Gaizuaskas adding four rebounds and Dusha finishing with four assists. With point guard Prince Lartey unavailable, Marius Kaftaniukas returned to the Leopards’ bench and finished with a season-high nine points in 16 minutes.
American Taylor Johnson led the visitors with 31 points, eight rebounds and four assists as his side strengthened their big for the runners-up spot. Blaine Freckleton added 20 points and seven rebounds while veteran American Martelle McLeomre finished with 16 points and five boards as the Cavs out-rebounded the hosts 58-39 .
Three point plays from Frecklton and Bernard Hehetro helped Cavs open with a 12-2 run, only Jackman troubling the scorer for Leopards. Although Dusha broke the run with a trey, Cavs rattled off nine straight points and despite Teni Mongo sinking a late triple the visitors led by 19 at the first breakfree.
It didn’t get any better for the home side in the second period, and despite three-pointers from Gaizuaskas and captain Chuck Duru the visitors went into the locker room with a 57-33 lead .
Despite a pair of treys from Kaftaniukas there was no improvement for the Big Cats in the third period with Cavs’ lead hovering around the 30 point mark and Johnson closed out the quarter with five straight points to give his side an 85-49 lead at the final break.
Dos Santos’ trey saw Cavs’ lead peak at 38 with four fourth period minutes gone, but Gaizuaskas replied from downtown and despite injuries to Andre Williams and Mongo the Big Cats did manage to outscore the visitors 23-17 in the quarter, but once again it was too little too late.