Hapoel Eilat recorded its first win over Maccabi Tel Aviv in 15 years on Sunday
night, claiming an 89-82 overtime victory in an electric atmosphere in Israel’s
Eilat improved to 17-9 to remain in second place in
the BSL standings, but will still need to defeat Maccabi Haifa on the road next
week in its final regular season game to secure the No. 2 seed in the
Haifa beat Maccabi Rishon Lezion 76-69 on Sunday to move to
16-10 and another win over Eilat next week will see it leapfrog the southerners
on a tiebreaker.
Eilat led by as many as nine points (36-27) in the first
half, but Maccabi scored seven of the final eight points of the second period to
close within a single possession (37-34) at the break.
yellow-and-blue grabbed the lead midway through the third quarter and looked to
be heading towards another win until Larry O’Bannon hit a clutch three-pointer
with 19 seconds to play to tie the score at 74-74 and force
Eilat controlled the extra period, with a Scotty Hopson dunk
with 1:34 remaining opening a six-point gap (84- 78) from which Maccabi could
“The game today was a lot of fun,” said Hopson. “We’ve had
close games with them all season. They are one of the best teams in Europe and
we won the game defensively, stopping them down the stretch.”
ended the night with 28 points and nine rebounds, while Avi Ben-Shimol scored
“I think our fans and team deserve a win like this,” said Eilat coach
and former Maccabi boss Oded Katash.
“We showed a lot of character in the
This is another win which makes this season special, but
we still have plenty of more work to do to succeed in the
David Logan led five Maccabi players in double-figures with 19
“This was a good practice game for us,” said Maccabi coach David
Blatt, who amassed an amazing 66-3 record in local league and cup play in his
previous two seasons with Maccabi, but has already lost four times in BSL action
“These games are a good opportunity for us to give some
players a chance and to rest others, like Devin Smith tonight. Winning the game
didn’t really mean that much to us as we secured the No. 1 seed long
Elsewhere, Haifa required an 11-0 surge to end the game to edge
Rishon on the road and snap a three-game losing streak.
Pat Calathes had
22 points for Haifa (16-10), with Adrian Uter finishing with 16 points and 12
rebounds for Rishon (11-15), which lost for a sixth straight game.
Sunday, Bnei Herzliya (9-16) secured another season in the top flight with an
85- 77 win at Maccabi Ashdod (10-16), officially relegating Ironi Ashkelon to
the National League after 10 years in the BSL.
Herzliya’s seven straight
defeats entering Sunday combined with Ashkelon’s (6-19) win over Ashdod last
week complicated matters for the Sharon side. However, a 10-2 run to finish the
encounter on Sunday snapped the losing streak and ensured Herzliya’s BSL status
for another year.
Romel Beck led the winners with 26 points, while Diamon
Simpson had 18 points for Ashdod.
On Monday, Netanya (14- 11) can secure
a place in the top four and home-court advantage in the quarterfinal playoffs
with a win against Hapoel Jerusalem (12-12).
Also Monday, Hapoel
Gilboa/Galil (12-12) can book its place in the playoffs with a victory over
Hapoel Holon (11-14).
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