Report: Bristol Flyers 98-94 Cheshire Phoenix (2OT)
Saturday, February 1st 2020
Bristol Flyers prevailed through double overtime to see off the visiting Cheshire Phoenix.
Gentrey Thomas led all scorers with 32 points adding 16 rebounds, and five assists, whilst Levi Bradley totalled a season-high 27 points off the bench, including a trio of clutch free throws to force the extra period.
Daniel Edozie was hot to start the game, hitting Flyers first five points of the night. With the team’s leading scorer Fred Thomas sidelined with a wrist injury, Bristol needed the rest of the side to pick up his workload.
Gentrey Thomas was next out the blocks, opening his account with a three-pointer. The Flyers guard showcased his offensive skill-set with a second chance score through contact, sending Cheshire guard Parker Jackson-Cartwright to the bench with an early foul and completing a three-point play from the line.
Flyers built an early lead with Cheshire unable to match their scoring output. Marcus Delpeche punctuated the first period with a dunk off a Gentrey Thomas assist. Flyers finished the first with a 22-15 lead.
Bradley took over the scoring in the second quarter, scoring in the paint and at the foul line. Jackson-Cartwright checked back into the game and was effective in re-energising the Cheshire offence, getting to the foul line and finding good looks for his team mates.
Gentrey elevated for a one handed dunk, but Jackson-Cartwright swiftly answered with a driving lay-up, signifying the start of a game-long duel between the two guards. Phoenix were able to tie the game as half-time neared, but Bradley kept up his assault on the Phoenix defence, scoring with a signature hook shot and connecting from outside the arc. A spot up three-pointer from Daniel Edozie made it 44-39 at the break.
Flyers started the third quarter strong, with Raphell Thomas-Edwards driving in for a score despite being fouled by Demonte Flannigan. A cold spell for Flyers allowed Cheshire to retake the lead behind a 13-0 run. Thomas-Edwards ended the drought with a putback lay-up, but Cheshire led 56-59 at the end of the third quarter.
Gentrey ensured Flyers kept it close with a pair of scores to open the fourth. Thomas found Lewis Champion cutting to the basket for a lay-up and then sank a tough turnaround jump shot.
Thomas-Edwards hit a timely three, but Jackson-Cartwright answered right back with a triple of his own. A huge three from Gentrey made it a one possession game again. Flyers locked in on defence down the stretch, securing multiple stops.
A timeout from Coach Kapoulas saw Gentrey locate Bradley in the corner and the Flyers forward was fouled on a three point attempt. He calmly knocked down all three free throws to tie the game 75-75. A final defensive stop by Flyers sent the game into overtime.
Flyers fell behind early with Jackson-Cartwright getting to the foul line and Louis Sayers connecting from long range. Gentrey splashed a huge three to keep it close, but Sayers’ was heating up from outside and responded with another triple. Another Gentrey three followed and then he found Thomas-Edwards under the basket for a game tying lay-up to force a second extra period.
Josh Rogers broke the game open for Flyers with a clutch three-pointer. Thomas followed with a drive to the basket, assuredly sinking a lay-up through a foul and hitting the resulting free throw.
Cheshire Coach Ben Thomas called his last time-out to draw up a play and Flyers were able to force a Jackson-Cartwright miss but not prevent a second chance score from Mike Ocherobia. Bradley was fouled as the last seconds ticked away and he once again showed composure under pressure to make both shots and seal the victory.
Images courtesy of JMPUK.