Jerusalem falls to Holon

Reds drop second straight; Netanya’s Banks buries Ashkelon with buzzer-beater.

December 6, 2010 07:25
2 minute read.
HAPOEL HOLON guard Moran Rot (left) was instrument

Hapoel Jerusalem 311. (photo credit: Asaf Kliger)

Hapoel Jerusalem suffered its first defeat in five BSL contests on Sunday night, losing 76-65 at Hapoel Holon in a game which wasn’t anywhere near as close as the final score indicates.

Jerusalem was down by double-digits at the break (44-33) and never came close to mounting a comeback in the second half, trailing by as many as 25 points at one stage.

Sunday’s defeat was Hapoel’s second straight in all competitions following last Tuesday’s 73-67 loss at CEZ Nymburk.

Oded Katash’s team hosts the Czechs at Malha Arena on Tuesday, hoping to get back to winning ways after a difficult week.

“We weren’t focused from the start and didn’t implement what we planned,” said Katash, whose team shot six of 30 from beyond the arc. “Holon deserves all the credit, but we don’t have long to correct matters because we have a very important game on Tuesday.”

Former Jerusalem star Jamie Arnold had 21 points for Holon, with Robert Hite adding 17 points and 10 rebounds and Moran Rot contributing 13 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

“We started the season poorly, but showed our great character tonight,” Holon coach Danny Franco said.

Jason Rich had 13 points for Jerusalem.

Also Sunday, Barak Netanya snapped a three-game BSL losing streak, beating Ironi Ashkelon 60-58 thanks to Adrian Banks’ buzzer-beating basket.

A very tight first half in Netanya ended with the visitors ahead 32-30, but the hosts had the edge with 10 minutes to play, leading 49- 45.

The lead continued to exchange hands in the fourth quarter and with 15 seconds to play the score was tied at 58-58.

Dror Hagag had a chance to decide the encounter for Ashkelon, but he had his shot blocked by Romeo Travis, and Banks scooped up the loose ball and raced up the other end to lay in the winning basket as time expired.

Banks was Netanya’s only player in double-figures, scoring 23 points.

Thomas Terrell had 16 points for Ashkelon.

Maccabi Haifa’s game against Maccabi Rishon Lezion at Nesher was postponed following the fire in the Carmel.

On Monday, Maccabi Tel Aviv visits Maccabi Ashdod.

In Holon, Jerusalem was always going to struggle without Brian Randle and Holon opened a double-digit margin after less than three minutes. A Kasib Powell layup capped a 12-2 Holon start to the game and the hosts were ahead 25-16 after 10 minutes.

Holon remained in control in the second period, with an Arnold desperation three-pointer to beat the shot clock giving Holon a 40-28 advantage with three minutes remaining in the first half.

The hosts maintained the double-figure lead (44-33) until the break and only continued to extend the margin in the third period.

Jerusalem’s offensive play went from bad to worse and an Arnold basket completed an 18-4 run which gave Holon a massive 62-37 advantage.

Rich’s buzzer-beating basket from the halfway line cut the deficit slightly by the end of the quarter (62-44) and five more points by the American guard to start the final frame gave the visitors some hope.

However, Arnold responded with five straight points to dampen Jerusalem spirits and the hosts cruised to just their third win of the season.

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