Report: Plymouth Raiders 86-68 Bristol Flyers
Sunday, October 28th 2018
A shorthanded Flyers suffered an early exit in the BBL Cup, following a 86-68 defeat to Plymouth Raiders away from home.
Without Justin Gray or Panos Mayindombe, Flyers were led by Fred Thomas with 16 points, whilst Raiders’ Joonas Jarvelainen had a huge 29 points off the bench and Donte Nicholas added a 16 point, 16 rebound double-double.
Flyers went behind early with Nicholas opening the scoring and Raiders’ Captain Zak Wells following with a lay-up. Flyers were able to take their first lead behind a Thomas three and the two sides kept it close through the bulk of the first period.
Lewis Champion brought energy from the bench making a three. Devontavious Payne committed an unsportsmanlike foul to halt Marcus Delpeche on the break but Delpeche missed both foul shots. Champion followed up with a strong drive and lay-up. Raiders put together an 8-0 run to close out the quarter, putting them ahead 25-21.
Champion remained hot through the quarter break with a fast-paced driving layup. Delpeche made another lay-up, but from then on Flyers struggled to score and Raiders grew their lead to ten points.
Champion picked up a foul on Zak Wells and Coach Kapoulas was given a technical for protesting the decision. Flyers reacted with elevated defnsive intensity, holding Raiders scoreless for three minutes and cutting the lead to three.
Delpeche made a big play to tip-in an offensive rebound to start the Flyers’ 9-0 run. Payne was assigned a second unsportsmanlike foul and ejected from the game. Raiders regrouped and headed into the locker room with a 44-38 lead.
Flyers came out of half-time lacking energy. Thomas was given a technical foul for flopping as Nicholas drove into him. Nicholas made the free throw and then Denzel Ubiaro scored a lay-up on the subsequent possession.
Plymouth were able to complete a 6-0 run with a Josh Wilcher three-pointer to force an early timeout from Coach Kapoulas. Lewis Champion sank back-to back three-pointers to cut the deficit to seven points. Flyers managed to earn further stops and Tevin Falzon muscled in to convert a lay-up, but Jarvelainen answered with back to back three pointers of his own to force a second Flyers time out.
Jarvelainen remained Flyers’ biggest problem, making a lay-up through contact from Falzon and converting the free throw for another three point play. Raiders continued to draw fouls and Wilcher and Jarvelainen made trips to the line to extend the lead to 18 points. Falzon was able to crash the offensive glass and draw a shooting foul of his own, making both free throws. A big block from Delpeche released Thomas for a fast break lay-up to take the score to 66-52 at the end of the third.
Raiders continued to get second chance possessions with Nicholas scoring after collecting his own miss. Jarvelainen was able to complete another and-one play after a Flyers turnover. Nicholls then lost the handle on his dribble next time down resulting in another fast break score for Raiders and Coach Kapoulas was forced to use his last time out with Flyers down 73-52.
Both teams seemed fazed with a series of missed shots over the last few minutes until Wilcher broke the drought with a fast break lay-up. Thomas answered, but another unsportsmanlike foul called against Champion sent Nicholas back to the line for two more foul shots.
A shooting foul on Thomas led to Ubiaro picking up a technical and Thomas made one of the three resulting foul shots. Falzon returned to the game with under two minutes to go and made a pair of three-pointers. A late five points from Thomas cut the deficit back below twenty, Flyers falling 86-68.