A free-scoring performance allowed Cheshire Phoenix to soundly defeat second division side, Hemel Storm, and proceed to the next round of the BBL Trophy.
After an impressive display against rivals Manchester Giants last weekend, Cheshire picked up where they left off and continued to show their expectational offensive talents with a comfortable 77-63 win against Hemel Storm.
Cheshire named an unchanged starting five with guards Kahron Ross and Pharroh Gordon at the backcourt with forwards Kyle Carey, Sehill Mouliom and Jalen Hayes manning the frontcourt.
The opening quarter resulted in a tight contest with Cheshire narrowly leading with a three point, 19-16, lead at the interval. Bolstering an impressive 44% field goal percentage that contributed massively towards their slender lead at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter, however, saw Phoenix gain a further grip on the game, finishing with a 29-13 run which resulted in the hosts entering half-time with a commanding 48-29 lead. Cheshire’s sublime shot percentage continued to further cement their grip on the game as they finished the quarter with a 61% field goal percentage as 14 of their 23 attempted field goals found the bottom of the bucket.
Storm hit back with a 20-17 run in the third quarter cutting the Phoenix lead back down to a 16 point deficit, as the visitors improved their shot percentage and scoring output from the field as well as remaining perfect from the charity stripe.
Despite a late offensive surge of possession from the visitors, Cheshire held on and saw out a 77-63 victory in spite of Hemel’s 14-12 run which saw the Storm score a total of 14 rebound (including six offensive rebounds) and two steals in a cagey final quarter performance.
Jalen Hayes was arguably Cheshire’s stand out performer notching a double-double (23 points, 13 rebounds), with Kahron Ross also scoring a respectable box score (15 points, three assists, nine rebounds and four steals) and French forward Sehill Mouliom also impressing (14 points and five rebounds).
Hemel also enjoyed an influential scoring display with Greg Poleon scoring 23 points and amassing an incredible 17 rebounds, three assists and two blocks. Mike Williams also showed a tremendous scoring feet with 22 points as well as touting eight rebounds, two assists and one block.
Cheshire will now turn their attention back to the BBL and face a trip to the Bristol Flyers on Friday, in a vital game against one of their closest competitors for a play-off spot.
(Photos courtesy of Adam Day Photography)