London Lions beaten at Sheffield Sharks in BBL Cup

PUBLISHED: 17:32 10 November 2020 | UPDATED: 13:22 11 November 2020

DeAndre Liggins (centre) in action for London Lions. Picture: Carol Moir

DeAndre Liggins (centre) in action for London Lions. Picture: Carol Moir

Carol Moir

London Lions suffered defeat away to the Sheffield Sharks in their second BBL Cup group phase game of the season last week.

The Lions were beaten by a 70-61 scoreline at Ponds Forge on Friday night.

An 11-0 run for the Sharks midway through the fourth quarter closed out the result after the Lions had taken a half-time lead.

The Sharks were led by 21 points from Antwon Lillard, with 12 of those coming from the free throw line as the home side converted a total of 34 free throws.

The Lions started well, with DeAndre Liggins putting them 10-5 up and Justin Robinson increasing the score.

Despite six points from the Sharks’ Kipper Nichols, the Lions led 19-18 at the end of the first quarter.

The Lions were on top again early into the second quarter as Kevin Ware and Robinson hit jumpers.

Mike Tuck responded for the Sharks before an and-one from former Shark Dirk Williams saw Lions in front 34-26.

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Lillard was making a nuisance of himself at the free throw line as the deficit narrowed to 39-34 at half time.

The third quarter ended with the Lions holding a slender one-point lead and empty possession after empty possession during this part of the match saw their coach Vince Macaulay call time out.

The sides traded baskets until midway in the fourth.

Williams fouled Sharks’ Nick Lewis on a successful three and the home side went on to push the lead to 62-50.

Though the Lions closed the gap to 62-57 with just over a minute remaining, the visitors ran out of time as Sheffield took the win.

The result means the Lions have started with two defeats, after losing their opener against Newcastle Eagles.

Coach Macaulay said: “We are not playing with any urgency at the moment. We are missing Byron Mullens for sure, but that is no excuse for the performances we have turned in.

“We aren’t supporting each other on the floor and we have gone away from free flowing basketball. We’ll go back to the drawing board and do whatever is necessary to get back on track.”

The Lions face the Sharks again at home on Friday, behind closed doors at the Copper Box Arena, before heading back out on the road to visit Leicester Riders on Sunday, November 15.

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