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Wolves extend their winning run
6:14pm Sunday 16th February 2014 in Sport
LEADERS Worcester Wolves extended the longest winning British Basketball League Championship streak to 11 games with an 89-82 victory over Glasgow Rocks.
There was a full house at their old University of Worcester sports centre home as more than 500 Wolves faithful braved the elements after the match was switched from the arena due to flooding.
Rocks arrived at Bristol Airport earlier in the day to reduce risks of delays on hazardous roads.
Wolves stunned them by building a 13-point lead in four minutes as Alex Owumi and Kalil Irving led Worcester to a 15-2 advantage.
The second quarter saw a more physical, resilient Rocks as fine shooting from Gareth Murray with 17 points reduced the deficit to only three at 51-48.
The start of the second-half saw a slump from both teams with too many missed shots and turn-overs.
But Wolves maintained their defensive intensity with Kai Williams and Jamal Williams picking up the pace, while the vociferous crowd started to play their part.
The hosts maintained a slight edge going into the final quarter but the game was in the balance.
Will Creekmore made telling rebounds as his battle of the boards with Daniel Northern proved to be an important factor.
The third quarter saw Rocks start strongly and Fran Urli cut the deficit to 68-65.
Wolves answered with seven points in a row as Zaire Taylor took a leading role and the somewhat out-of-sorts Creekmore, by his normal high standards, started to assert himself at both ends of the court.
Owumi, who played well throughout, also made telling contributions in the critical closing stages as Wolves pressed their advantage to 77-67 with minutes remaining.
Rocks struggled to initiate another comeback and Wolves secured a vital home win.
Owumi top-scored with 24 alongside double-doubles from Creekmore, with 21 points and 16 rebounds, and Taylor, with 17 and 11.
Head coach Paul James said: "We had a really good first quarter and, when the Rocks adopted a more physical approach, we had to adjust.
"It was not a great performance overall but, at this stage, it is about getting the win and we can continue to look at ways to improve our performance in practice sessions."
Club president Mick Donovan said: “It is really important to acknowledge the commitment of Worcester fans after what had been a difficult week for the region with the weather dominating events and wiping out a range of activities.
"It would have been easy to stay at home on an awful night, but the fans turned up in their hundreds to get behind the team.
"There are many factors that contribute towards a successful club and our fans are proving to be one of them."
Wolves travel to Newcastle Eagles on Friday in the National Trophy quarter-finals before returning the next day for a derby with Birmingham Knights in Solihull.