Neigh luck for Rocks in Leicester

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BBL Championship

Leicester Riders 87 (23,41,72) (Downing 23, Couisnard 21, Hassan 19)
Glasgow Rocks 79 (20,43,55) (Johnson 20, Northern 20, Urli 14)

Leicester Riders maintained their pursuit of a top two finish with an 87-79 home victory over Glasgow Rocks.

The defeat leaves the Rocks outside the play-off places but strengthens Riders position in the table ahead of their match at fourth placed One Health Sharks Sheffield on Sunday.

Anthony Downing led Riders’ scoring with 23 points while Chris Johnson and Daniel Northern had 20 each for Glasgow.

Leicester built a 17 point cushion (72-55) with just the final period to play but saw their lead whittled down to 85-79 with one minute 15 seconds remaining before two Downing free throws sealed the win.

Riders began well to race into a 17-8 lead with Jay Couisnard scoring the last four points of the run. However, Rocks responded well and used two Johnson threes to take a 20-19 lead. Riders finished the quarter the stronger though with the final four points to go 23-20 ahead.

Glasgow scored the first six points of the second quarter and extended their advantage to 32-26 on a Northern two. A 9-4 Riders burst handed the home team back the lead at 37-36 but Gareth Murray’s three sparked a 7-4 finish to the half to give Rocks a 43-41 lead at the interval.

Two Johnson free throws opened the third quarter for Rocks but after that the Riders dominated. Downing levelled the match at 45-45 and Leicester piled on the points to eventually lead by 18 (70-52) on another Downing two.

A Johnson three stopped the rot for the Rocks but two Jose Calvo free throws gave Riders a 72-55 advantage heading into the final quarter.

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