BBL Cup North Group
Friday 25th October 2019 – B. Braun Sheffield Sharks v Newcastle Eagles
Sunday 27th October 2019 – Cheshire Phoenix v B. Braun Sheffield Sharks
The B. Braun Sharks face another double header weekend of BBL Cup North Group action that could go a long way to cementing a place in the quarter finals. Standing in their way are Newcastle Eagles, no doubt eager to avenge that dramatic three point overtime loss in the North East last Friday. Sunday sees the Sharks visit Ellesmere Port to take on the 2-4 Cheshire Phoenix, who are experiencing an upturn having beaten Leicester and Manchester in consecutive games.
What to expect – Newcastle Eagles
Revenge! That’s what Eagles Coach Ian Macleod will be out for following last week’s 80-83 win for the Sharks at the Eagles Community Arena. Newcastle led by as many as 17 points at one stage and it was a tribute to the Sharks never-say-die qualities that they managed to force the extra five minutes. Backcourt duo Rahmon Fletcher (17) and Rodney Glasgow (16) were deadly as ever and towering forward John Mitchell (17) was a serious threat. Sade Aded-Hussein hit early foul trouble but has been prolific in other games and veteran Darius Defoe (7) was quiet by his very high standards last time out. Last Friday’s encounter was edge of the seat stuff and one can only assume that Newcastle will be all out for the ‘w’ this week. Whatever happens, it’s going to be a great game!
What to expect – Cheshire Phoenix
The Nix lost their first four but have been resurgent in the last couple of weeks. A 58-66 road win in Leicester was the start of their upturn and they followed that up by taking down North West rivals Manchester Giants by 64-82 last week in Coach Ben Thomas’ 100th game in charge. A constant shining light for them this season so far has been Parker Jackson-Cartwright, who put up 23 against the Giants aided and abetted by Jalen Hayes, who top-scored with 32. The improvement has also coincided with the addition of former GB guard Ben Mockford to the roster and he forms an exciting trio of shooters with Louis Sayers and Cilo Latinovic, who unfortunately was a DNP last week. With home court advantage, they may yet fancy their chances of adding to that 2-4 record.
Team basketball. The scoring effort against Newcastle was spread through the roster and significantly no Shark made the weekly All Star Five as a result. Bennett Koch led the way with 18 but there were also double figure contributions from Rob Marsden (15), Nick Lewis (14), Connor Cashaw (13), Mike Tuck (11) and Mackey McKnight (10). The Sharks were also hot off the boards with double digit rebounding from Cashaw and Lewis, and a nine assist contribution from McKnight. No superstars, no prima donnas – these guys come together as a unit and at the moment it is paying off. More of the same is required.
Last time out
Newcastle Eagles (Fletcher 17 Mitchell 17 Glasgow 16) 80 B. Braun Sharks (Koch 18 Marsden 15 Lewis 14) 83
B. Braun Sharks (McKnight 25 Lewis 18 Tuck 14) 75 Cheshire Phoenix (Jackson-Cartwright 16 Sayers 15 Hayes 11) 60
Fancy a half-term treat? There’s no better way to celebrate the start of the holidays than with a trip to the Tank to see your table-topping B. Braun Sharks! Don’t forget we are back this Friday for what promises to be another thriller with Newcastle Eagles in town. We complete another action-packed weekend on the road at Cheshire Phoenix on Sunday – tune in to the BBL’s YouTube channel from 5.30pm if you want to see this one live and for free!
Next home game
B. Braun Sharks v Newcastle Eagles, Friday 25th October 2019, Ponds Forge International Sports Centre, 7.30pm Tip Off