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Birmingham Knights 59 Worcester Wolves 100
5:58pm Monday 21st October 2013 in Sport
WORCESTER Wolves maintained their unbeaten record at the top of the British Basketball League after easily seeing off the challenge of Birmingham Knights.
The 100-59 victory at North Solihull Sports Centre means Wolves have now won their first five games of the championship season, as well as last Friday’s triumph over Manchester Giants in the BBL Cup.
All 11 Wolves players got on the score-sheet, but it was ex-Plymouth stalwart Andreas Schreiber who led the way with 18 points, followed by Zaire Taylor and Jamal Williams with 14 and 13 respectively.
In only his second appearance for the Wolves, Schreiber also impressed by pulling down 12 rebounds. Martyn Gayle, with 16 points, and Emile Hopkins with 10 were the Knights’ only double-digit scorers.
Worcester director of basketball Paul James described the win as ‘job done’, adding: “We played tough. It was also a chance for our bench players to get extended court time and they came through. Mission accomplished.”
There was a blow to Birmingham’s chances before the game with free-scoring American guard Brent Benson ruled out through injury.
From the tip-off it was obvious his absence was seriously disrupting his side’s structure as they struggled to find the basket and were unable to hold back an explosion of Wolves scoring.
Nearly four minutes had elapsed before the Knights troubled the scoreboard, during which time Worcester had already rattled in 10 points.
Another blistering passage of Wolves offence saw the visitors move 17-1 ahead thanks to Will Creekmore and Taylor.
That allowed James to make early substitutions, bringing in Schreiber, Kalil Irving and Caylin Raftopoulos for Taylor, Creekmore and Stefan Djukic.
Wolves led 29-11 at the end of the first quarter and soon accelerated to 40-15 but the Knights, for who coach Paul Douglas received a technical foul for disputing decisions, had cut the deficit to 47-24 at half-time.
University of Worcester student Calvin Morant-Hudson took up the point guard reins for the second-half and marked his arrival with a confident long-range score, before adding three more baskets by the end of the third quarter.
The on-slaught continued with Williams floating home a double of three-pointers and then brought the Wolves supporters to their feet with a mazy dribble and assist for Schreiber to alley-oop through the net.
The visitors led 78-43 going into the final quarter but no mercy was shown by Taylor, who swaggered to 12 final-quarter points.
At 98-59, and with just seconds remaining, he broke clear of tiring Knights, sprinted to the net and bounced the ball up over the rim, before gleefully jamming it down with both hands to bring up Worcester’s century and another comfortable win.
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