Hapoel Tel Aviv's Matan Naor 370.
(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
A 15-0 run in the final six minutes gave Hapoel Tel Aviv its fourth win in its
past five BSL games on Monday, beating Hapoel Gilboa/Galil 72-62 in Gan
Tel Aviv, which improved to 4-2, was blown out 88-52 at home by
Maccabi Haifa last week, but it showed real character by bouncing back on the
road on Monday against a desperate Gilboa team still searching for its first win
of the season.
“We are working very hard and are hungry to succeed,” said
Hapoel coach Erez Edelstein.
“We have wonderful fans and we owed them
after last week. I’m happy we managed to recover from that loss.”
Timor buzzer-beating three-pointer gave Tel Aviv the edge (21-19) after 10
minutes and Gal Eitan continued his inspired form since the start of the season
and with six straight points extended the gap to 32-23.
Kenny Hayes would outscore Hapoel 9-2 by himself in the closing stages of the
first half and the hosts were down by just two points (34-32) at the
Amit Simhon’s three capped Gilboa’s comeback (42-41) midway
through the third quarter and it was anybody’s game with 10 minutes to play,
with Tel Aviv ahead by a single point (54-53).
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Gilboa got the final frame
off to the better start and was well placed with six minutes to play when
Brandon Hunter gave it a 62-57 lead.
However, the hosts would fail to
score another point until the end of the night, with Tel Aviv coach Edelstein
making crucial adjustments that decided the game.
Gilboa could find no
answer for Demontez Stitt and Eitan scored five critical points to clinch the
win for the Reds, Stitt led Hapoel with 21 points, with Eitan scoring
“This was an important win after getting thrashed at home last week,”
Eitan said. “We played with intensity from the start.”
Hayes had 14
points for Gilboa, which visits the in-form Barak Netanya next
“This is a very painful defeat,” said Gilboa coach Lior Lubin after
seeing his team fall to 0-6. “Clearly I have a big part in what has happened to
the team and we will do everything to fix the situation. I believe that we have
the players needed to climb out of this hole.”
The games between Ironi
Ashkelon and Bnei Herzliya and Maccabi Rishon Lezion and Maccabi Ashdod were
postponed to Wednesday due to the ongoing rocket fire from Gaza.
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