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London Lions let lead slip in Leicester

PUBLISHED: 15:36 23 December 2016

Kai Williams takes a shot for London Lions at Leicester (pic Graham Hodges)

Kai Williams takes a shot for London Lions at Leicester (pic Graham Hodges)

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Leicester Riders 99 London Lions 89

London Lions went into Christmas on a losing note after BBL title rivals Leicester produced an absorbing comeback to force overtime and claim a home victory.

The lead changed hands throughout the game, with the Lions looking down in the third quarter then battling back.

But the hosts overturned a seven-point deficit in regulation with just over 60 seconds left on the clock.

It had looked like Lions were going to bring a big win back to the capital, not least when Alex Owumi converted what seemed to be a huge go-ahead triple to make it 81-74.

But Riders finished with an 8-1 run to force the extra period, even if they did have to hold their breath first Owumi missed his only free throw of the night when he split a pair with 14 seconds to go, then as former favourite Zaire Taylor missed a lay-up with two seconds remaining which surely would have given London victory.

With the bonus of Lions’ guard Andre Lockhart and centre Rashad Hassan having both fouled out, the momentum was with the home side and, helped by some great play from British forward Andy Thomson in overtime, they were able to finish the job.

Tyler Bernardini led Riders with 23 points whilst Lions put five players in double figures but it just wasn’t enough.

The Lions now break over Christmas before returning to the Copper Box for a huge home game against the Sheffield Sharks on Friday December 30.

Tickets are available at ticketmaster.co.uk.

Lions scorers; Taylor 22, Hassan 18, Niktash 17, Owumi 14, K Williams 10, Ikhinmwin 4, Wells 2, Lockhart 2, Moyo 0, Ashby.


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