BBL Trophy Quarter Final
Friday 24th January 2020
Newcastle Eagles v B. Braun Sheffield Sharks
Back on the silverware trail for the B. Braun Sharks this coming Friday and it is a swift return to Tyneside to take on the Newcastle Eagles in the quarter final of the BBL Trophy. The Sharks have won six out of the last seven in the North East but it is never an easy place to visit. Cheshire Phoenix await the winners in the semi –final after their double overtime triumph over Glasgow last weekend.
What to expect
Newcastle are currently 5-2 in the BBL Championship and when you consider their losses have come against the Sharks and the in-form Cheshire Phoenix, that is developing into a reasonable return so far. The return of CJ Gettys to the BBL has been a masterstroke; the towering centre is returning 24.3 points per game and 14.4 rebounds to justify why he was on the radar of the NBA G league. Former MVP Rahmon Fletcher is putting up 16.7 ppg and 9.9 assists as you might expect of a man of his talents and veteran duo Darius Defoe and Drew Lasker are bringing all their experience to the table – Lasker rolling back the years with 21 in last weekend’s 81-97 win over Manchester. The Eagles will know that their new arena has been a happy hunting ground for the Sharks of late and will be looking to reverse that trend. And of course, the added incentive of a semi-final always focuses the mind…
Sharks Coach Atiba Lyons was particularly unhappy with the events of last weekend. A heavy 98-61 defeat in Glasgow was followed by a much closer one, 86-91, at home to league leaders London Lions. The Sharks improved in the London loss but Lyons was displeased with the slow start the team made and felt it was something of a missed opportunity. It can be guaranteed that a week of extremely hard work will have followed. The Sharks did so well to dominate their BBL Cup group, only to exit at the quarter final stage and Lyons will be keen to ensure there is no repeat in the Trophy.
Last time out
Newcastle Eagles (Gettys 22 Matthew 13 Defoe 10) 76 B. Braun Sharks (Koch 25 Lewis 24 Cashaw 19) 99
If you can’t make it to the Eagles Arena on Friday night, then the BBL YouTube channel is once again your friend. Tip off is at 7.30pm as ever. What a terrific atmosphere in the Tank last Sunday as the London Lions and Ovie Soko came to town! Fancy lending us a hand once again? Don’t forget we entertain the Surrey Scorchers at Ponds Forge on Friday week. We love that noise from the SharkNation – there will be no complaints from us if you turn up the volume! Fear The Fin!
Next home game
B. Braun Sharks v Surrey Scorchers, Friday 31st January 2020, Ponds Forge International Sports Centre, 7.30pm Tip Off