Maccabi TA stages 4th-quarter rally to overcome Hapoel Jerusalem

Hapoel suffered another discouraging defeat in Tel Aviv, falling to an 11-8 record with a sixth loss from its last seven games.

March 12, 2018 03:48
2 minute read.
Maccabi TA stages 4th-quarter rally to overcome Hapoel Jerusalem

Maccabi Tel Aviv guard Norris Cole scored a team-high 22 points in last night’s 77-74 comeback victory over Hapoel Jerusalem in BSL action at Yad Eliyahu Arena. (photo credit: ADI AVISHAI)


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Maccabi Tel Aviv piled the misery on Hapoel Jerusalem on Sunday night, erasing a double-digit deficit in the fourth quarter to claim a 77-74 victory in BSL action at Yad Eliyahu Arena.

Jerusalem pulled ahead in the third period, taking a 12-point gap (64-52) into the final 10 minutes to put it in a perfect position to register a first victory under the guidance of new head coach Oded Katash.

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But after the reigning champion suffered a humbling 78-66 home defeat to Bnei Herzliya last week in Katash’s first game at the helm, Hapoel suffered another discouraging defeat in Tel Aviv, falling to an 11-8 record with a sixth loss from its last seven games.

Norris Cole scored 22 points for Maccabi, which improved to 15-4 and bounced back from last week’s home loss to Ironi Ness Ziona after also defeating Efes Istanbul in Euroleague action in Turkey last Thursday.

Michael Roll added 13 points, with Richard Howell leading Jerusalem with 15 points.

Maccabi’s win kept it tied for the BSL’s best record with Hapoel Holon, which improved to 15-4 earlier in the day with a 92-87 triumph at Ness Ziona.

Glen Rice Jr. registered another sensational performance for Holon, finishing with 32 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists. Tu Holloway added 20 points, with Khalif Wyatt netting 19 points for Ness Ziona, which fell to 7-12.

Holon hosts Maccabi Tel Aviv in its next BSL game on Saturday.

Holon got off to a slow start by its standards, but after only scoring 17 points in the first 10 minutes, Dan Shamir’s team netted 32 in the second quarter to take an 11-point lead (49-38) into the break. Ness Ziona never gave up the chase, forcing a tight finish, only for Holon to eke out another victory.

Rice shot 10-of-14 from twopoint range, bouncing back from last week’s season-low 12 points in the victory over Maccabi Ashdod.

Rice leads the league with 25.1 points per game, seven more than Alex Young in second place.

“We were a little sloppy and turned over a lot of balls and in the end we managed to win but we need to play better than this,” said Shamir.

“Rice was unstoppable in the paint, but I like him to play like that when the team is also playing better. But this is an important win and if this is what we needed to do to win I’ll take it.”

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