On this day – Feb 20

2011 – Leopards keep up the pressure

Leopards 93 (18,42,71) Leeds Carnegie 82 (17,38,59)

LEOPARDS continued their challenge for the EBL Division One title with a 93-82 victory against fourth placed Leeds Carnegie, on Sunday. A strong third quarter proved key for Mark Clark’s team as gained revenge for November’s defeat in Yorkshire, and they never trailed after Simeon Esprit sunk a three-pointer with 4:21 remaining in the first half.

Leigh Greenan led a balanced scoring effort for the home team with 21 points, four rebounds and three steals. Ousman Krubally had a couple of massive dunks in his 15 point, 14 rebound double-double, with Esprit also finishing with 15 points. Josh Johnson added 14 points, eight rebounds and five assists as well as sinking some key free-throws down the stretch, with Keelan Cairns (12) and Josh Sharlow (11) also finishing in double figures for a Leopards team who were without the injured big man Borja Pintor-Henningsen.

Sharlow and Esprit opened the scoring, but Henry Wilkins launched a 6-0 run with a three-pointer and a tight first period saw Leopards just shade it 18-17 despite being forced to sit Krubally down on three fouls in under five minutes of action.

A Zoltan Supola basket followed by back-to-back scores from Sean Clifford saw Carnegie regain the lead at the start of the second period before Greenan broke the run off a Johnson assist. A Cairns trey tied the score at 28 with four minutes gone, but a Clifford basket put the visitors 32-28 ahead midway through the second quarter, before Greenan launched a 14-0 run and Leopards went into the locker room 42-38 ahead.

Greenan opened the second half scoring with back-to-back baskets, and Cairns basket off Krubally’s assist put them ahead by 15 going into the final minute of the period. Leeds replied with a 5-0 run, but it was Greenan who sent Leopards into the final break with a 71-59 lead.

Cairns hit another basket from The Land of Plenty, but Clifford made it a ten point game four minutes into the period when he also drained from downtown. Sharlow grabbed a miss from Krubally to make it 78-68 with 4:23 on the clock, but Adrian Fenyn stole the ball and scored a lay-up to make it a five point game a minute later, and force a timeout from  Clark.

Krubally pulled down his ninth offensive rebound of the game and made it 81-74 heading into the final two minutes and after Fenyn had hit a free-throw, Greenan took the margin up to eight of Esprit’s assist with 80 seconds remaining. Fenyn scored off Albert Margai’s assist to make it a five point game in the final minute, but the Big Cats wrapped it up from the foul line with six straight free-throws from Johnson in the final 22 seconds as Leopards collected their ninth league win of the campaign.

Wilkins finished with 19 points and four rebounds, while Supola had the same figures but added five assists. Clifford had 15 points, five boards and four assists while Fenyn chipped in with 13 points and six assists.

Leopards: L Greenan (21), O Krubally (15), S Esprit (15), J Johnson (14), K Cairns (12), J Sharlow (11), M Henry (3), D Norton, L Olaniyi, R Alexis (DNP), Teixeira (DNP).

2000 – Leopards blown away by Storm

Dairylea Dunkers Championship

Derby Storm 108 (32,49,76) Stone 30, Evans 28, BJ Bunton 19

adidas London Leopards 91 (21,50,76) Johnson 27, Kimbrough 22, Brantley 19

The Thunderdome

Derby Storm got one over former Coach Bob Donewald with a 108-91 victory over the adidas London Leopards.

Storm saw Leopards erase their 11 point first quarter advantage with runs of 9-2 and 11-0 in the second quarter. But the home side took control of the game with 18 of the first 20 second half points. Kip Stone led all scorers with 30 points.

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