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Joel Osborne

Joel Osborne writes

Posted Tuesday, April 10th 2018

Vigor helps Scotland to Commonwealth Games semi-final

Mike Vigor had 12 points off the bench to help Scotland to a 61-66 victory over Nigeria in the qualifying final of the Commonwealth Games.

Led by Gareth Murray’s 17 points, Scotland will now face hosts Australia in their semi-final encounter - the winner guaranteed a silver medal with the loser advancing to the bronze medal game.

BOX SCORE

WHAT HAPPENED

Murray broke the deadlock with a triple to give Scotland an early three point advantage.

The Scots took an early six point lead before Nigeria responded with a 6-0 run to tie the score a nine points apiece.

Neither team were able to establish a real defensive presence early on, with Scotland shooting the lights out from deep, going 5/5 from long range on their way to 23 first quarter points.

Vigor was introduced to the game and quickly notched his first points of the night to give the Scots a five point lead, 14-19.

The Flyers’ captain finished the running floater to give Scotland a seven point lead at the end of the first period, 16-23.

Nigeria opened the second with five unanswered points to cut the gap down to just two, 21-23.

Kieran Achara scored his first points of the game with the lefty finish, which was shortly followed by a triple from Callan Low to restore Scotland’s seven point advantage, 21-28.

Ali Fraser capped off a 10-0 run from Scotland to give them their largest lead of the game so far at 12.

Vigor knocked down his first three-pointer of the game to get his personal tally up to seven, extending Scotland’s lead to 14 points, 24-38.

At the end of an entertaining first half, it was Scotland who led 28 points to 40.

Scotland improve to 4-0 at the Commonwealth Games
Nigeria opened the third with a huge alley-oop slam, but Bunyan steadied the ship with the running floater to keep the Scottish lead at ten.

Scotland scored just two points in the opening six minutes of the third as Nigeria continued to make their move, narrowing the gap to six, 36-42.

Nigeria went on a 16-4 run to tie the game at 46 points apiece, ensuring it was still all to play for heading into the final ten minutes.

A goaltending call gave Vigor the opening points of the fourth, which was shortly followed by a layup from Fraser Malcolm to push Scotland ahead by four.

Nigeria took their first lead of the game with eight minutes to play before Vigor quickly responded for Scotland with the triple.
Some excellent defence from Rob Beveridge’s side forced a 24 second violation, giving Scotland a chance to extend their lead once more.

Jonny Bunyan sunk the mid-range jumper to restore Scotland’s four point lead, 51-55.

Fraser came up with the goods from long range to cap off a 10-0 Scotland run and extend the lead to 51-60. The Glasgow Rocks' forward came up big down the stretch for Scotland, his side leading by six with two minutes to play.

Nigeria halved the deficit to just three points with 31 seconds remaining, to force Coach Beveridge to call for time. 

A well executed offence straight from the timeout resulted in a wide open dunk for Murray, which ultimately put the game to bed.

The result sets up a semi-final clash with Australia to be played on Saturday, April 14th.

Photo credit - 5or6