Mac TA turns focus to BSL homestretch

By
April 21, 2013 06:07

Eilat hosts Netanya (12-11) on Sunday; the latter is currently in 4th place, which will ensure home-court playoff advantage.

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MACCABI HAIFA star forward Donta Smith.

Donta Smith370. (photo credit: Adi Avishai)

Maccabi Tel Aviv returns to the BSL’s weekly grind on Sunday night, while the battle for playoff seeding heats up as the regular season enters its final stretch.

After seeing its Euroleague campaign come to an end with a 3-0 sweep at the hands of Real Madrid in the quarterfinals last week, Maccabi has only got the local championship to fight for and it will hope to use its five remaining regular season games to build some momentum ahead of the playoffs, with the yellow-andblue already wrapping up the No. 1 seed.

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Besides Mac TA, which faces Maccabi Rishon Lezion on Sunday, and Hapoel Jerusalem, the league’s 10 other sides have got just four more games to play as they fight for a place in the playoffs and home-court advantage.

Eilat won for the fifth time in six games on Thursday, beating Rishon Lezion 95-76, while Haifa saw its six-game winning streak snapped with a 99-94 loss at Barak Netanya.

Eilat hosts Netanya (12-11) on Sunday, with the latter currently in fourth place, which will ensure home-court advantage in the playoffs.

Haifa faces Hapoel Jerusalem (11-11), which has lost four straight contests and combined with the Israeli players’ strike hasn’t won a game in almost two months.

Ironi Ashkelon’s stay in the top flight could effectively come to an end on Sunday should it suffer its 13th consecutive loss when it faces Hapoel Holon on Sunday.

Holon (9-14) is still hoping to sneak into the playoffs, but currently finds itself two games back of eighth-placed Hapoel Tel Aviv (11-12), which visits Maccabi Ashdod (10-13) on Sunday.

The game between Hapoel Gilboa/Galil (11-12) and Bnei Herzliya (8-15) has been postponed to May 2 due to Gilboa’s participation in the Balkan League Final Four.

Gilboa will face Levski Sofia in the final in Bulgaria on Sunday after defeating KK Kumanovo of Macedonia 85- 76 on Friday.

Veteran Israeli center Yaniv Green led Gilboa with 19 points and 10 rebounds.


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