Hapoel Haifa continues the streak of losses, with Hapoel Eilat continuing the positive momentum. The Southerners, who are ranked 11th and one before the last in the table, beat Hapoel Haifa 79:90 this evening (Sunday) in the bottom battle as part of the 19th cycle in the Winner Basket League. Cleveland, Fatway, Griffin and Gershon led in double figures and helped the Southerners record an important road victory, and the second in a row in the league.
The match opened in a very equal way when, despite the multiple misses by both sides, each basket was answered with points from the other side. The guest was a little more accurate and ended the quarter with a score of 18:21, when in the second quarter Nathaniel Artzi and Taran Fatway led the southerners to a record lead of 16 points. The Haifaites were able to shrink a little before going down to the break, and the result of the second quarter was locked at 34:44 and an advantage of ten for the guest.
Even at the beginning of the second half, the team from the south continued their great ability, when with the help of Antonios Cleveland and Teren Fatway they managed to score seven points more than the opponent, and seal the result of the quarter with 49:66 and a 17 advantage for the guests. In the last quarter, Anthony Hickey made a comeback, and even helped his team reduce the difference to only seven, but Sharon Drucker’s team failed in the comeback attempt and in the end the southerners decided 79:90 at the end and recorded a second consecutive and very important victory.
In the next cycle, Drucker and his apprentices will have to face a difficult obstacle when they meet the second in the table, Hapoel Tel Aviv, which they hope to surprise with a drive-in and get out of the negative streak they have been in. On the other hand, the southerners will also meet a not easy opponent at all, in the form of the champion, Hapoel Holon.
Scored for Hapoel Haifa: Isaiah Cousins 22 points, Anthony Hickey 17 points and 10 assists, Will Reiman 13 points, Shawn Jones 12 points, Gor Lavia six points and Justin Tillman, Amit Simhon and Spencer Weiss three points each.
Scored for Hapoel Eilat: Antonios Cleveland 29 points, Teren Fattway 16 points and seven aces, Eric Griffin 14 points and seven rebounds, Amit Gershon 10 points, Nathaniel Artzi nine points and Austin Tillman and Manjuk Matiang six points 21.
First quarter: 18:21 Hapoel Eilat
The Hapoel Haifa quintet: Anthony Hickey, Justin Tillman, Isaiah Cousins, Sean Jones and Amit Simhon.
The Hapoel Eilat quintet: Antonios Cleveland, Manjuk Mathiang, Eric Griffin, Austin Tillman and Amit Gershon.
The first points in the contest came from a good basket by Amit Gershon, and after he missed the free throw, he saw Isaiah Cousins equalize on the other side. Two misses by Antonios Cleveland gave Sean Jones a basket from half distance and the first lead, but Eric Griffin with a basket and a foul restored the minimal advantage to the guest. Jones made it 5:6 with another basket, but Gershon answered with a good three on the other side and turned back, and Anthony Hickey balanced once more and made it 8:8 at the end of three minutes of basketball. Griffin made one of the free throws and allowed Cousins to establish a Haifa advantage, when Jones added a basket on the way to a 9:13 lead in the middle of the quarter.
Cleveland started with a huge dunk, but Cousins answered with a basket and an accurate foul that established a five-point lead for the North. Gershon Zimek only made it two with another accurate shot from outside the arc, and even Austin Tillman made it 16:16 with an easy basket. Teren Fatway also made a three-pointer, and Griffin added two more points that sealed a 0:10 run, but Cousins made a great half-distance dunk at the buzzer to make it 18:21 in favor of the guests at the end of the first ten minutes of the match.
Second quarter: 34:44 to Hapoel Eilat
Griffin opened the quarter with an accurate shot from outside the arc and established a lead of six for the guest, but Cousins answered from the other end. Nathaniel Artzi added his first points, Fatway interrupted two minutes of turnovers and misses with one of two accurate free throws, and Artzi with a great basket made it 20:29 on the way to a record lead for the guests, with 6:17 minutes left in the half. Fatway with a good basket and foul established a double-digit lead after a steal by Manjuk Matiang, but Gor Lavia Zimek with first points. Artzi was accurate with another great 3-pointer and established a 13-point lead, but Jones answered with a good layup on the other side.
Austin Tillman missed twice from the line and saw Levi make both of his free throws on the other end, but Cleveland restored the double-digit lead on the way to 26:37 with a good layup. Tillman added a basket in favor of the guest, and Jones’ miss sent Fatway into a burst which he ended with a huge three-pointer that made it 26:42, 2:20 minutes to go. Spencer Weiss Dyke from outside the arc added his first points, but Cleveland answered with a layup from the other end. Will Reiman dunked twice from the line, and immediately after that committed a foul that sent Griffin to the second line, from where he missed twice. Rayman added an easy basket, Griffin missed twice from the line again and completed only 2/7 of the free throw, and Lavi added points that narrowed the difference to ten and made it 34:44 for Eilat at the end of the first half.
Third quarter: 49:66 to Hapoel Eilat
The second half opened with a good basket by Cousins that reduced the difference to single digits, but Gershon scored from the other side and scored ten personal points after two minutes in the quarter. Cleveland with a great break established a lead of 12, but Tillman’s miss allowed Cousins to shrink to a single-digit margin with a great three-pointer on the way to 48:39 for the South. Artzi added two with a good break, but Justin Tillman found the basket for the first time tonight. Cleveland made a great three-pointer and returned the double-digit advantage to the guest, and even a lost ball by Hickey gave Cleveland another three-pointer on the way to 41:56, with four and a half minutes left on the clock to end the quarter.
Hickey shrunk a bit with a good basket, but Fatway made another 3-pointer to give the guests a 16-point lead. Cleveland dunked with two good ones, Jones answered with a basket on the other side and Hickey added a great layup that shrunk to 61:47 a minute and a half to the end of the quarter. Jones made two free throws, but Griffin completed a three-point run with an accurate basket and foul. Fatway established a record advantage of 17 points with two accurate free throws, and sealed the quarter result with 49:66 in favor of the Eilats.
Fourth quarter: 79:90 to Hapoel Eilat
The last ten minutes of the match opened with one of two penalty kicks by Rayman, but his technicality sent Fatway Shedike off the line, and immediately after that Cleveland added two more penalty kicks that increased the lead to 19 in favor of the visitors. A good move by the Haifaites ended with a good 3-pointer by Hickey, who also added a great layup and with his own hands the score was 55:69 at the end of two minutes in the quarter. Tillman added a good basket and Hickey dyke again from outside the arc and set a great 0:10 run for the Haifaites. Cleveland interrupted the home run with an excellent three-pointer, but Rayman hit twice from the line from the other end five minutes to the end of the contest.
Cleveland returned the 15-point advantage with a huge dunk at the end of a good burst, but Hickey and Reiman with big threes made it 75:68 and narrowed the difference to only seven. Cleveland increased the lead to nine when he scored twice from the penalty spot, and Mathiang added another huge dunk that returned the double-digit advantage to the guest. Simhon reduced the difference to eight with a good 3-pointer, but Cleveland answered with a good 3-pointer on the other end. Rayman dunked twice from the line, but Matiang added a good dunk and basket on the other side. Cousins added a layup on the other side and Tillman answered with two accurate free throws, and again Cousins hit twice from the line, while Griffin also hit twice from the free throw, and determined the result of the game with 79:90 in favor of the visitors from Eilat.