Friday 29th March 2019

BBL Championship

DBL Sharks Sheffield 86 Bristol Flyers 66

The DBL Sharks Sheffield climbed back into fifth place in the BBL Championship with a comprehensive victory over fellow playoff-place seekers, Bristol Flyers. A stellar defensive performance set the tone for the Sharks, who led by as many as thirty one points before claiming an important win in the race for seedings.

Starting fives

Sharks: Marsden, Alexander, McKnight, Williams, Martin.

Flyers: Taylor, Delpeche, Gray, Thomas, McCloud.

Key moments

The Sharks set the tone for the game with an outstanding early defensive performance. Dirk Williams went scoreless for the first ten minutes but nullified Flyers danger man Fred Thomas as the Sharks opened up a 17-3 lead on a Mathew Martin bucket. Mike Tuck’s late score made the differential seventeen at 26-9 and two Mackey McKnight free throws concluded a terrific start at 28-9.

The second quarter was no less ruthless. Williams finally found his range with six points at the top of the period as a missed Edozie dunk summed up the Flyers luck. Chris Alexander came up with two outstanding solo efforts before assisting to Rob Marsden to see the Sharks in front by an eye-watering 46-15. Seven Justin Gray points attempted to keep Bristol in touch but 51-25 at the half summed up the Sharks utter dominance.

Inevitably, the Flyers came out with a flea in their ear in the third quarter and a series of Justin Gray scores saw them to within twenty at 59-39. Williams finished outrageously from the corner behind the hoop to signal that the Sharks hadn’t gone away and his pair of free throws ended the third quarter at 67-45.

Bristol faced a mountain to climb as the Sharks saw out a comprehensive win. Ten consecutive Marcus Delpeche points saw them to 81-62 but the Sharks allowed Nate Montgomery and Davide Martinez-Morrant to ensure all the suited players made the scoresheet as a vital win was secured in the march towards post season.

MVP

Every suited Sharks player made the scoresheet to underline the team nature of the win. Mackey McKnight flirted with a triple double thanks to his 10 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists on his second home debut so to speak. Rob Marsden continued to lead the forwards with 14 points and 10 rebounds and Chris Alexander weighed in with a customary performance amounting to 17 points and 4 assists. However, it was a mature display from Dirk Williams that caught the eye. Williams went scoreless in the first quarter but built from a platform of solid defence to eventually garner 22 points, 2 rebounds and an assist.

Quotes

Atiba Lyons spoke of a great effort from his team and his pride at the performance in the first game of a big week for the Sharks.

Next home game

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Kieran Kenney