Hapoel Jerusalem center Amar’e Stoudemire had a season-high 16 points and 11 rebounds in last night’s 93-71 win over Maccabi Haifa at the Jerusalem Arena..
(photo credit: UDI ZITIAT)
Hapoel Jerusalem dropped to its first home defeat of the BSL season on Sunday night, losing 92-81 to Hapoel Eilat to fall to 5-5.
Jerusalem was looking to bounce back from its 20-point defeat at Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar in Russia in Eurocup action last Wednesday, especially as it was coming off a 22-point win over Maccabi Haifa and a 20-point victory against Maccabi Rishon Lezion in BSL action.
But Jerusalem capitulated in the second half on Sunday and will need to quickly regroup as it hosts Ulm of Germany in its final Eurocup regular season game on Wednesday which will determine from which position it will advance to the Top 16.
Eilat seized control by outscoring Jerusalem 27-16 in the third quarter to take an eightpoint gap (71-63) into the final 10 minutes.
The hosts came no closer than four points and Eilat improved to 5-5 with its third straight win.
Earlier Sunday, Maccabi Rishon Lezion made it three wins in four games by edging Maccabi Haifa 73-68. Rishon seized control by outscoring Haifa 28-16 in the first period, only for the hosts to open the fourth quarter with three consecutive three-pointers, the last two by Will Graves, to take the lead (58-55). The game remained tight until the finish, with Nitzan Hanochi’s basket with five seconds to play ultimately clinching the victory for the visitors.
On Monday, Maccabi Tel Aviv returns to BSL action when it hosts Hapoel Gilboa/Galil. Maccabi leads the standings with a 9-1 record, but five of its league wins have come by six points or fewer, including Saturday’s 99-93 overtime triumph over Ironi Nahariya.
Meanwhile, half of the BSL’s team approached the Israel Basketball Association on Sunday demanding to appoint a new directorate. The five teams - Maccabi Tel Aviv, Hapoel Jerusalem, Maccabi Haifa, Hapoel Holon, Maccabi Ashdod and Maccabi Kiryat Gat - are requesting to make changes to the directorate as they are unhappy with the way in which decisions are being made, with Tel Aviv and Jerusalem especially frustrated at having their hands forced by the league’s smaller teams time and again. Each of the BSL’s 12 teams has one representative on the directorate, which has 15 members in all.
“For some time there has been a majority in the directorate which prevents the BSL from fulfilling its goals,” read the letter to the IBA, before explaining that the representatives of those teams are acting only based on their interests and with the aim of hurting other clubs.