Alex Tyus Maccabi Tel Aviv 370.
(photo credit: Asaf Kliger)
After getting off to its worst ever start in the BSL, Maccabi Tel Aviv was back
to its dominant self on Monday night, claiming a comfortable 85-74 victory over
Hapoel Gilboa/Galil in Gan Ner.
Maccabi’s start to the season was
anything but straightforward, with the yellow-and-blue losing two of its first
three games in local action for the first time ever following the shock defeat
to Ironi Ness Ziona last week.
However, Tel Aviv improved to 2-1 in the
Euroleague with an impressive road win over Lokomotiv Kuban on Friday and moved
to 2-2 in the BSL on Monday, effectively clinching the victory with a 50-point
first half (50-34).
Also Monday, Hapoel Jerusalem extended its winning
streak with a win over Hapoel Holon, while Maccabi Haifa beat Hapoel Eilat and
Barak Netanya crushed Maccabi Rishon Lezion.
In Gan Ner, Maccabi was
playing without Devin Smith for a fourth straight league game, with Sofoklis
Schortsanitis also being rested ahead of Thursday’s Euroleague game at Rytas
However, unlike its previous three BSL encounters, the rest of
Maccabi’s roster stepped up its play, ending the first quarter with an 11-0 run
to open a double-digit lead (28-18).
Gilboa closed to within five points
(30-25), but a Guy Pnini three-pointer shifted the momentum back in Maccabi’s
favor (34-25). After failing to score a single point in 14 minutes over the
previous three BSL games and in 10 minutes during three Euroleague contests,
Pnini played almost 10 minutes in the first half on Monday, scoring eight
points. A Shawn James layup capped a 17-4 surge, which opened an 18-point gap
(47-29), and Maccabi cruised throughout the second half after taking a 16-point
margin (50-34) into the break.
Ricky Hickman had 20 points for Maccabi,
with Yogev Ohayon adding 17 points, six rebounds and six assists.
Pasalic had 21 points for Gilboa, which fell to 1-3.
A 35-point third
quarter helped Maccabi Haifa to its fifth consecutive win in all competitions on
Monday. After scoring just 31 points in the first half and entering the break
trailing Hapoel Eilat by nine points, Haifa ran riot in the third period,
outscoring the southerners 35-14 to open a 12- point lead (66-54) on the way to
an 88-73 win.
Ike Ofoegbu led six Haifa players in double figures with 17
points and nine rebounds, while Donta Smith and Moran Roth had 13 points
Terrence Roderick and Flynn Clayman netted 13 points each for
Hapoel Jerusalem claimed its third straight BSL win on Monday,
improving to 3-2 with a 91-83 victory over Hapoel Holon at Malha Arena. Holon
led by as many as 12 points (58-46) in the third quarter, but Jerusalem came
back to force a tight finish and held its composure in the closing minutes to
clinch the win.
Yotam Halperin and Josh Duncan had 23 points each for
Jerusalem, with Ronald Dupree scoring 20 points. Laurence Bowers had 26 points
Maccabi Rishon Lezion dropped to its fourth straight defeat on
Monday, losing 97-73 at Barak Netanya. The hosts all but secured the victory by
the interval, taking a 60-33 lead into the second half.
Bennet Davis had
19 points for Netanya, with Dror Hagag scoring 22 for Rishon, which has lost the
last four games by an average 20 points.