Hapoel Jerusalem seeks to keep momentum going

By
March 27, 2011 04:12

After losing two straight games in humbling fashion, Jerusalem has won four of five contests, averaging 102.8 points in the victories.

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BRIAN RANDLE of Hapoel Jerusalem

BRIAN RANDLE of Hapoel Jerusalem 311. (photo credit: Hapoel Jerusalem website)

Hapoel Jerusalem will be looking to continue its recent revival when it visits Maccabi Rishon Lezion in BSL action on Sunday.

After losing two straight games in humbling fashion, Jerusalem has won four of five contests, averaging 102.8 points in the victories.

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Hapoel took sole possession of second place in the standings with an impressive 99-90 victory over Bnei Hasharon last week and also welcomed back star forward Brian Randle from injury.

Randle played just nine minutes, scoring five points, but with still five more games to play in the regular season before the start of the playoffs, he has got plenty of time to regain top form.

Jerusalem coach Oded Katash received further good news on the injury front after Uri Kukia was given permission to resume training this week following a long injury lay-off.

The return of Randle and Kukia leaves Katash with the headache of trying to split playing time between 12 senior players.

Jason Rich (16 minutes) and Jawad Williams (12 minutes) were unhappy with receiving so few minutes in the victory over Bnei Hasharon, but Katash is adamant that the players need to get used to the fact that they are no longer guaranteed playing time.

“This time it was Rich and Williams and next time it will be someone else,” Katash said.

“That is just a part of playing for a team with a big roster.

This isn’t something that just happens in Jerusalem. If any player has a problem with this he can come and talk to me and ask to be released.”

Rishon beat Jerusalem when the team’s last met two months ago, but after winning four straight games, Effi Birenboim’s side has lost four of five.

Also Sunday, Maccabi Haifa hosts Ironi Ashkelon in a battle between the two bottom sides, while Bnei Hasharon welcomes Hapoel Holon.

Barak Netanya visits Maccabi Ashdod on Monday.

The game between Hapoel Gilboa/Galil and Maccabi Tel Aviv was postponed to April 17 to allow the yellow-and-blue to prepare for Game 3 of its Euroleague quarterfinal series against Caja Laboral Vitoria on Tuesday.


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