Hap J’lem fizzles out after break in loss to Gilboa

After thrashing the struggling Bnei Hasharon in his first game at the helm, Jerusalem suffered a disappointing State Cup exit.

January 16, 2012 06:28
2 minute read.
Sharon Drucker

Sharon Drucker 311. (photo credit: Adi Avishai)

In case he had any doubt, Hapoel Jerusalem coach Sharon Drucker was given on Sunday a stark reminder of the magnitude of the task he faces at his new club.

After thrashing the struggling Bnei Hasharon in his first game at the helm, Jerusalem suffered a disappointing State Cup exit at the hands of Maccabi Rishon Lezion last week before dropping to a humbling 79-67 BSL loss to Hapoel Gilboa/Galil at Malha Arena on Sunday night.

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Jerusalem led for much of the first period and still had everything to play for despite trailing by six points (40-34) at the break.

However, the apathy and sloppy play which came to characterize Oded Katash’s time at the club, was back on display in the second half, with Gilboa outscoring the hosts 23-11 in the third quarter to open an 18- point gap (63-45) it easily maintained in the final 10 minutes.

Courtney Fells had 23 points and nine rebounds for Gilboa, with Brian Randle the only bright spot on Jerusalem’s roster, scoring 14 points.

Meanwhile, Hapoel Holon built on the momentum it picked up in reaching the semifinals of the State Cup last week, returning to winning ways in the BSL with a 72-59 home victory over BC Habika’a.

An 11-0 run to end the first period gave the hosts a 22-10 lead and Holon would cruise after that, maintaining a double- digit gap for the remainder of the game.

Ron Lewis had 19 points, six rebounds and six assists for Holon, although he only hit four of 16 shots from the field, while Tasmin Mitchell added 14 points and seven rebounds.

Frank Robinson had 17 points and nine rebounds for Habika’a, which has also got a cup semifinal to look forward to.

After losing its previous four league games by an average 31 points per contest, coach Ariel Beit-Halachmi’s league debut with Bnei Hasharon couldn’t have gone any better on Sunday.

Bnei Hasharon beat Maccabi Haifa 89-79 on the road for just its third BSL win of the season Beit-Halachmi became Bnei Hasharon’s third coach of the season last week, replacing Adi Azulai, who won just one of five games after taking the place of Roei Hagay, who recorded a single win is six encounters.

Also Sunday, Maccabi Ashdod snapped Barak Netanya’s four-game BSL winning streak with an 82-71 triumph.

Maccabi Tel Aviv hosts Ironi Ashkelon on Monday.

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