It’s advantage Sheffield Sharks in the semi finals of the BBL Trophy after Atiba Lyons’ side drew 79-79 in the first leg at Leicester Riders.
Sharks have put themselves in position to close out the tie at the EIS Sheffield this Wednesday, and set up a final clash with Newcastle Eagles.
The first quarter started slowly, with just nine points being scored in the opening three minutes. However three pointers from Jerrold Brooks of Sharks and Tyler Bernardini of Riders sparked the game into life, and further scores by captain Mike Tuck and TJ Robinson ended the quarter at 19 points a piece.
Neither team was able to hold any sort of substantial lead throughout the second quarter. Superior three point shooting from Trayvonn Wright and Andrew Sullivan saw Riders develop a four point lead with three minutes of the quarter to go. However 18 points from Sharks leading scorer Robinson and four out of five successful three pointers by Brooks saw them swing the game back in their favour. Sharks closed out the quarter with a 46-47 lead going into halftime.
Riders quickly gained control of the third quarter with points from Jamell Anderson, and held that lead all the way into the fourth quarter going into the last ten minutes with a 65-60 lead. Sharks fought to keep the game close with points from Mike Tuck and Kyle Odister, however main scorer Robinson was unable to add any more points to his tally this quarter.
Riders continued to hold their lead going into the fourth and final quarter, with back and forth scoring resulting in a six point advantage for Riders going into the last five minutes. They led all the way up until the last 30 seconds, when with the score at 79-77, Sharks star TJ Robinson scored a two point jump shot to make it 79 all and finish the game as a draw.
Sharks MVP of the evening was Jerrold Brooks, who put in a fantastic performance with 24 points and five assists to keep Sharks in the game throughout.