There were three exciting games in the betFIRST BNXT League this Friday evening.
Picture : Belga
After three awahy games, Phoenix Brussels Basketball was back in Neder to face Belfius Mons-Hainaut. But even the cheers of the crowd prevent Brussels from losing its sixth consecutive game in the league. Coach Jaumin’s troops nevertheless kept their opponent in doubt until the end. Despite being down 9-17 at the beginning of the game, Brussels hung on to come back to 21-23 at the end of the first quarter. In a game with a lot of turnovers, the home team managed to take the lead at halftime (39-35). Brussels upped the pace at the end of the second half and even increased the lead to 11 points (59-48). But in less than 4 minutes, the Foxes erased their deficit (66-65 at the end of the 3rd quarter). It was then Mons’ turn to take the lead (74-84) but a last Brussels run gave them a last attempt at three points to equalize… without success (85-88). For Mons, Emmanuel Nzekwesi was once again player of the game with 23 points and 9 rebounds. Pape Badji, his direct opponent, was also outstanding with 21 points and 9 rebounds for Brussels.
RSW Liège Basket managed to keep Kangoeroes Basket Mechelen in doubt for a long time on their home court. The visitors had a very good start, leading 12-19 after one quarter. But the inconsistency was going to catch up to Liège who suffered a 17-2 run in the 2nd quarter and were overtaken at the end of the first half (32-29). Liege could not find its rhythm at the beginning of the 2nd half and saw its opponent run away little by little (59-52 after 30 minutes). Kangoeroes wouldn’t relinquish the lead anymore to get a fifth important victory in the fight for the top 5. Late in the game, Wen Mukubu (14 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists) was sent off for two unsportsmanlike fouls. Nate Grimes also stepped up for Kangoeroes with a double-double (12 points and 11 rebounds). Shizz Alston added 18 points. For Liège, Bazoumana was the most prolific with 19 points.
Stella Artois Leuven Bears did not have a good week. After their defeat at the Dome in Charleroi earlier in the week, Leuven lost a close one at Hubo Limburg United (72-71). Everything started well for the team led by Eddy Casteels (17-24 after one quarter). Limburg reacted in the second quarter with center Tyrell Nelson, who scored 18 points and 10 rebounds for the game. The scoreboard showed a perfect tie at halftime (34-34). Limburg continued its momentum at the start of the second half to lead 56-49 at the end of the third period. Leuven didn’t give up and started the last quarter with a 2-17 run that gave them back the lead (58-66). Then it was the home team’s turn for a comeback and it was finally Jonas Delalieux who was decisive against his former club by scoring the winning basket almost on the buzzer. Delalieux finished the game with 19 points. For Leuven, Cebasek scored 19 points and McGlynn added 18.