2013 – Ish on fire in Leopards’ win
On a day that the reigning champions saw their crown taken by Reading Rockets, Robert Youngblood’s team produced an excellent performance in the battle between the National Trophy and Cup holders.
A stunning third period which saw Ish Fontaine pour in three three-pointers proved the difference between Leopards and second placed Carnegie as they outscored the visitors 23-11.
Simon Cummings led the Leopards’ scoring for a fourth straight game with 25 points, seven assists and five rebounds, while Greg Hernandez had a massive 21 point, 17 rebound double-double. On his first start for the Big Cats, Fontaine finished with five three-pointers on the way to 19 points, while Carl Josey added nine points and four assists.
It was a depleted Leopards’ team, with captain Taner Adu seemingly out for the rest of the season with the Achilles injury suffered in the Trophy final, Rowell Graham still struggling with an ankle injury and Dan Dunscombe ill, but the Big Cats dug deep for their seventh win in nine games.
Hernandez opened the scoring with an and-one, but Robert Marsden replied at the other with a trey to set the tone for the first half. Fontaine gave Leopards their biggest lead of the first period with a three to put them 12-7 up after three minutes, but Leeds replied with an 11-4 tear capped by Bryan Modeski’s shot before Cummings provided the assist for Hernandez to tie the score at 16 going into the first break.
Dave Ajumobi opened the second period with a three point play for the visitors, and Leopards trailed by a many as four in the opening thee minutes of the quarter before Josey tied things after grabbing an Hernandez miss. Neither side were able to score more than two successive baskets, but it looked like Carnegie would take a one point lead into the locker room following Armand Anebo’s basket with 12 seconds on the clock but Cummings sent the Big Cats into half-time on a high as he beat the buzzer with a three-pointer to give them a 40-38 lead.
Youngblood opened the second half scoring with a pair at the free-throw line, and the Leopards player-coach made it a six point with 7:21 on the clock with a rare three-pointer. But it was Fontaine who blew the game open, hitting three of four three-pointers in a two minute spell to give Leopards a double-digit lead, and the lead peaked at 15 when Josey hit a trey as Leopards went into the final break with a 63-49 lead.
Marsden, who led Leeds with 19 points but needed 22 shots, opened the final period scoring, but the Leopards’ lead never dipped into single figures and when an Hernandez and-one made it 73-57 with five minutes remaining it became clear that Leeds’ only hope was to lose by less than six and clinch the head-to-head decider.
But scores from Fontaine and Cummings ended that hope as Leopards wrapped up the win and they are now joint fifth as they head into the final month of the regular season.
Leopards: S Cummings (25), G Hernandez (21), I Fontaine (19), C Josey (9), R Youngblood (5), L Brown (2), T Martin, D Camile, J Davis (DNP)
2002 – Storm blown away
DG London Leopards Kool Kats 107 (21,45,77)
Jason Kimbrough 22, Revonte Dantzler 21, Rico Alderson 19
Derby Storm 80 (23,38,57)
Kevin Griffin 23, Durrell Robinson 20, Tyler Peterson 16
BBL Championship @ Brentwood Centre
DG London Leopards Kool Kats rose to third position in the BBL Championship Southern Conference with a 107-80 success at home to Derby Storm on Sunday.
Leopards started the game well with the first 11 points of the game, but still trailed 23-21 at the end of the first. An 8-2 tear in the second and a 15-0 start to the third broke the game open in Leopards’ favour, giving them a 58-39 lead, which Derby could not recover.
Former Storm forward Rico Alderson, who suffered a broken nose and required stitches to a leg injury, was just one rebound shy of a triple double with 19 points, 11 assists and 9 rebounds, but it was team-mate Jason Kimbrough who led Leopards’ scoring with 22 points; Kevin Griffin added 23 for Derby.
Leopards were without guard Rod Brown due to an ankle injury.
2018 – Bad weekend for Big Cats
As Levett Essex Leopards prepare to travel to Middlesex LTBC on Sunday, Thomas Baker’s team will want to quickly put last weekend behind them as they fell to two losses.
While the 102-85 loss at Nottingham Hoods – which saw the home side confirmed as NBL Division Two champions – saw some good passages of play from the Big Cats as they made the hosts work hard for the win, the following day’s 89-52 defeat against Liverpool saw easily their worst performance of the season.
The Big Cats started well at Nottingham, with a lay-up from youngster Jose Morais giving them a 9-6 lead but the hosts finished the period strongly to lead 33-22 after a high-scoring first period.
Will Ashby hit a trey to open the second period and Leopards dominated the first five minutes as a pair of Dougie Bennett three point plays followed by a Shaq Lewis trey gave them a 42-38 lead. That 20-5 run proved to be as good as it got in the first half for the visitors and Hoods answered with a 21-4 run to close out the half with a 59-46 lead.
Despite treys from Bennett and Ashby, Leopards trailed by as many as 22 in the third period but scores from Lewis and Jamie Hayes in a frantic final three seconds saw the deficit cut to 83-69 at the final break .
The Big Cats still had one more run left in them, and scores from Kevin Moyo and Bennett made it a ten point game at the start of the fourth period before Bennett hit three straight free-throws to reduce the home side’s lead to seven.
The key moment came with 7:01 left on the clock when Bennett – who led his side with 29 points and five assists in just 21 minutes – was called for a harsh intentional foul on Delaney Powell, and having already picked up a technical foul, the Leopards’ captain was ejected.
Scores from Moyo and Lewis kept the home side’s lead down to eight but the home used their three point shooting to close out the win in the final five minutes and seal the title.
Moyo came off the bench to finish with 14 points and six assists, while Lewis 12 points and four rebounds in 13 minutes of action
2019 – Newcastle woe for Leopards
Leopards produced arguably their worst performance of the season as they went down 75-57 at Newcastle, on Sunday .
After Asante Sandiford and Sam Newman had given the visitors a 4-2 lead, relegation threatened Newcastle went on a 7-0 run and never looked back.
Sandiford broke the run at the foul line but things didn’t improve as the wrapped up the first quarter with a trey to go into the break with a 21-11 lead..
Back-to-back scores from Hodges kept Leopards just about in the game, and Tom Child drained from downtown but the visitors continued to belie their place near the foot of the table and went into the locker room with a 40-27 advantage,
With Child hitting a second triple, Leopards managed to slowly chip away at the deficit, going into the final break 51-42 down, and although scores from Chuck Duru and Daniel Wagener made it a seven point game early in the fourth period that was as good as it got for the visitors as Newcastle closed out the victory.
Sandiford led the way with 13 points, with Newman and Lee Hodges each adding ten points.
2012 – Leopards finish strongly in Derby
|BA London Leopards||21||18||22||30||–||–||–||–||91|
|Derby Trailblazers||BA London Leopards|
|Gayle 26||Teel 32|
|Woodhouse 16||Krubally 21|
|Kakad 15||Buchberger 16|