Marshall MK Lions 86 (23,44,62,78,81) (Brown 18, Williams 18, Jamison 14)
Newcastle Eagles 93 (23,43,61,78,81) (Bridge 22, Leven 21, Stewart 16)
After Double Overtime
The newly-crowned BBL Champions, the Newcastle Eagles, recorded a sweep of the Marshall MK Lions as they beat them for the third time in the BBL Championship this season, 86-93 in double overtime on the road on Friday night.
It was a BBL-first as the Eagles were forced into overtime for the third consecutive game, and they have won all of those.
In another physical battle between these two sides in front of a full house at Bletchley, Andrew Bridge led all scorers with 22 points for the Eagles, with GB squad member Steve Leven on 21. Fellow GB squad member Yorick Williams hit 18 for the Lions, as did Terrell Brown.
The Lions took the lead early in the game as a Tony Windless three-pointer and 8 Shawn Jamison points saw them 11-10 up, but it required 4 late points from Yorick Williams to ensure that the teams were tied at 23 after the first ten minutes, setting the tone for this game.
Brown hit three triples as the Lions led 39-35 in the second stanza, before a 6-0 run from the Eagles saw them in front, only for Brown to hit another three and Williams to score on the buzzer as the Lions regained the advantage at 44-43 going into the half.
Darius Defoe put the Eagles back ahead, before Yorick Williams keyed an 8-0 burst for the Lions and a 52-45 lead. A Bridge triple saw the Eagles just one down at 62-61 going into the fourth.
Both teams thought they had it won in the fourth period after a Kevin Griffin triple sparked a 9-0 burst for the Lions, and a 71-64 lead. However, a Fab Flournoy basket was followed by 10 straight from Leven and a 71-76 Newcastle lead with 2:00 remaining. Griffin hit another triple before Brown got a steal and lay-up to tie the game with 28 seconds left. Griffin hit two free-throws before the Eagles made their way down the court for the last possession with 20 seconds left, they found Lynard Stewart inside and he tied the game.
There were no early baskets in a low-scoring five minutes, as a pair of Bridge free-throws gave Newcastle the lead before Griffin hit another three. Bridge was then fouled with 5 seconds left, and made 1/2 to force the second extra period.
Brown hit another three-pointer for an 84-83 lead for the hosts, before Stewart was fouled and left unable to take his free-throws. Brian McCotter checked in and tied the game at 84. Soon afterwards, Babalola hit a deep three and Bridge scored once more for an 86-89 Newcastle lead, before Babalola and Flournoy sealed it from the charity stripe.