Asante Sandiford led the way for the Big Cats at Essex Sports Arena on Sunday with a massive 34 point, 15 rebound double-double as Leopards crushed Team Newcastle 102-74 .
Luke Mascall-Wright added 16 points and four assists, while Chuck Duru came off the bench to finish with 11 points and five rebounds. Findley Wood chipped in with nine points, with Lee Hodges, Sam Newman and Rory Winter adding eight points apiece .
Thomas Baker’s team were deadly from three-point territory, downing 17 of their 39 attempts, and also out-rebounding the visitors 46-29.
Newcastle started well, but an 11-0 run sparked by Hodges gave Leopards a lead they would never lose, and Sandiford took his first period tally to ten points to send his side into the first break with a 24-16 lead .
That lead ballooned to 14 as Mascall-Wright hit a pair of triples to open the second period and Sandiford also scored twice from the Land of Plenty before Andre Lavinier marked his introduction to the game with a three within a second of getting on court and quickly doubled his tally to give Leopards a 54-34 lead .
With Wood (2), Sandiford and captain Newman all draining from downtown, the third period saw Leopards steadily increase their lead as they went into the final 78-53 ahead .
Dion Easton’s basket with 100 seconds remaining saw the lead reach 100-65, and only a late 9-0 run saw Newcastle manage a measure of damage limitation as Leopards moved up to 11th in the table .
Ben Seipt led the visitors with 20 points and eight rebounds, Onekachi Nzerem finished with 14 points and six boards.
1999 – Leopards rocked by Edinburgh
adidas London Leopards 69 (12,30,55)
Capers 21, Youngblood 15, Kimbrough 13
Edinburgh Rocks 72 (22,46,55)
McCord 23, Berry 15, New 11
Dairylea Dunkers Championship @ Brentwood Leisure Centre
Edinburgh Rocks ended their three game Dairylea Dunkers Championship losing streak, with a 72-69 win at adidas London Leopards.
Edinburgh had a blistering start lead 20-7 in the opening quarter, but Leopards fought back with an 8-0 start to the third. After a Joel Burns three and a John McCord dunk had put the vistors three up 12s from the end, the Leopards couldn’t tie things despite two last gasp attempts.
Scores from Carl Josey and Taner Adu at the start of overtime gave Leopards their first lead of the game, but tiredness clearly set in the final stages of the extra period as Rockets scored the final 12 points to take their seventh straight victory .
Greg Hernandez led the way for the Big Cats with a 27 point, 11 rebound double-double, with his fellow American Simon Cummings having his best game since signing in the summer with 23 points, six boards and three assists .
Josey and Adu added 11 and ten points respectively as Leopards’ starters played all bar 20 of the 225 minutes.
A pair of Cummings free-throws gave Leopards a three point lead with as many minutes gone, but generally Rockets controlled the first half, going into the opening break with a 25-22 lead before taking control in the second period to lead 41-28 at half-time .
Whatever Youngblood said at half-time clearly worked as Josey hit a jump shot to launch an 8-0 run which saw Rockets held scoreless for over five minutes .
However, the Big Cats were unable to get any closer than five points, and a poor intentional foul call on Youngblood just moments after Cummings had been grabbed around the neck without a similar call didn’t help .
But Cummings beat the buzzer with a trey to cut the Rockets’ lead to 54-46 going into the fourth period.
Hernandez opened the fourth quarter scoring, and he tied the game with 7:44 on the clock . But Leopards wasted several opportunities to grab the lead for the first time since the opening stages, and Lewis Champion put the visitors up by seven heading into the final two minutes .
That was the last score for Reading in normal time, and five straight Cummings points brought Leopards within one heading into the final minute .
Hernandez levelled the score at 72, and Leopards went into the final 20 seconds with the ball, only to see Josey and then Reading’s Dean Williams both turn the ball over before Adu’s buzzer beater rimmed out to send the game into an overtime period that proved just too much for the Big Cats .
Lewis Champion led Rockets with 19 points, six rebounds and five assists, with Robbie Parker adding 16 points and five rebounds while Luke Nelson and Ryan Lohfink have 15 points with six and five boards respectively.
Leopards: G Hernandez (27), S Cummings (23), C Josey (11), T Adu (10), L Brown (8), R Youngblood, I Fontaine, D Dunscombe, T Martin, J Anderosn (DNP), J Davis (DNP)