Mac TA humbled once more at Yad Eliyahu

Yellow-and-blue fails to gather momentum, falling to Nahariya for sixth defeat in seven games.

May 3, 2017 23:42
2 minute read.
Jonathan Skjoldebrand

Ironi Nahariya forward Jonathan Skjoldebrand scored seven points in last night’s 77-64 win over Maccabi Tel Aviv at Yad Eliyahu Arena.. (photo credit: ADI AVISHAI)

Maccabi Tel Aviv dropped to its sixth BSL defeat from the past seven games on Wednesday night, continuing its disastrous campaign with a humbling 77-64 loss to Ironi Nahariya at Yad Eliyahu Arena.

After suffering a club record five straight league defeats, Maccabi finally returned to winning ways last week, beating the sorry Maccabi Kiryat Gat. But it couldn’t make it two wins in a row on Wednesday and is in danger of falling out of the top four, who will have home-court advantage in the quarterfinal playoffs, after plummeting to an 18-12 record on the season.

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Nahariya took an 11-point lead (44-33) into the second half, but a 14-1 Maccabi run saw it tie the score at 61-61 with 7:45 minutes to play. Momentum seemed to be on Maccabi’s side, but the yellow- and-blue would then go almost seven minutes without scoring a point, allowing Nahariya to surge ahead with a 12-0 run to clinch the victory.

Tyrone Nash had 18 points for Nahariya, which improved to 16-14 with its first-ever win over Maccabi at Yad Eliyahu.

Gal Mekel had 13 points for Maccabi, which was hoping to close in on leaders Hapoel Eilat and Hapoel Holon.

Eilat and Holon can move two games ahead of Maccabi with wins on Thursday. Eilat, which has won 13 of its past 15 games, including nine straight at home, hosts Hapoel Jerusalem, while Holon welcomes the already relegated Kiryat Gat.

The top eight in the standings will advance to the bestof- five quarterfinals, the winners of which will progress to the Final Four.

The season-ending tournament will be played either in Tel Aviv’s Yad Eliyahu Arena or the Jerusalem Arena, with the team to finish the regular season in first place to pick the host venue.

Herzliya (17-13) closed within a single game of Maccabi with a 96-94 overtime win over Maccabi Haifa on Wednesday.

Herzliya came back from 14 points down to dramatically defeat Haifa.

The Greens led from the start, taking their gap to 46-32 at the start of the second half. Haifa took a nine-point margin (59-50) into the final 10 minutes and looked to be in control throughout the fourth quarter. But Herzliya would score the final six points of regulation, with Taurean Green’s three-pointer, after he had missed his first eight attempts from beyond the arc, tying the score at 75-75 and forcing overtime after John DiBartolomeo missed a chance to win the game. Green scored nine more points in the extra five minutes to secure Herzliya’s win.

Or Leumi finished with a career-high 23 points for Herzliya, with Green scoring 16. Kevinn Pinkney had 24 points for Haifa, which fell to 15-15.

Maccabi Rishon Lezion improved to 16-14 on Wednesday with a fifth straight win, beating Maccabi Ashdod (12- 18) 91-74.

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