maccabi tel aviv and hapoel gilboa_311.
(photo credit: Adi Avishai)
Hapoel Gilboa/Galil looked nothing like last season’s runner- up when it was
thoroughly outplayed by Maccabi Tel Aviv in a 95-60 humbling at Gan Ner in its
BSL opener two-anda- half months ago.
However, since that defeat, Gilboa
coach Lior Lubin has strengthened his roster and gelled it into a cohesive team,
with the northerners winning seven of their past nine games to take sole
possession of second place in the standings.
Gilboa will have a chance to
show the progress it has made since that thrashing by Tel Aviv and prove that it
remains Maccabi’s most serious challenger when it visits the yellow-andblue at
Nokia Arena on Sunday night.
Gilboa brushed aside Maccabi Ashdod to
improve to 7-3 on the season last Monday, but Tel Aviv has been in scintillating
form in recent weeks, winning its last eight contests in all competitions by an
average 24 points per game.
Maccabi improved to 12-1 in the Adriatic
League with an 85- 59 win over Serbia’s KK Hemofarm on Thursday and faces two
more games in the competition later this week.
“We are facing a tough
game against Galil with very little time to prepare,” Maccabi coach David Blatt
said after the win in Serbia.
“We then host two games in the Adriatic
League against Lasko and Novo Mesto. We have been on the road a lot recently and
have recorded some very nice results. But we will play more home games in the
coming weeks and that will allow us to perform even better because we will be
traveling less, sleeping more at home and playing at Nokia.” Also Sunday,
Maccabi Rishon Lezion hosts Hapoel Holon, BC Habika’a visits Maccabi Haifa and
Ironi Ashkelon welcomes Ashdod.
Hapoel Jerusalem visits Bnei Hasharon on
Monday, with Sharon Drucker expected to guide the team for the first time
following Oded Katash’s resignation last week.
Drucker, who led Jerusalem
to the ULEB Cup in 2003/2004, is set to sign a contract until the end of the