Saturday, Aug 24, 2019
Homenewsletter-sportsRockets, Shockers take opening games of NPBA playoffs

Rockets, Shockers take opening games of NPBA playoffs

The JD’s Seafood Shockers and the Sun Oil Rockets have taken the opening games of their New Providence Basketball Association (NPBA) playoff series, and can close out their opponents in two game sweeps come Friday.

In division one play on Monday night, the fifth-seeded Shockers easily turned back the banged-up University of The Bahamas (UB) Mingoes, winning comfortably, 98-63. In division two, the Rockets overcame a slow start as they battled back to defeat the Triple K Stampers, 96-90. Both games were played at the A.F. Adderley Gymnasium.

Division I

Shockers 98, Mingoes 63

Down two starters, and three players in total, the University of The Bahamas (UB) Mingoes found it to be difficult to compete with the JD’s Seafood Shockers on Monday night, and as a result, they were ran out of the gym. The Shockers, who are seeded fifth, blasted the short-handed Mingoes, who are seeded fourth, 98-63.

The Mingoes actually buried their first two three-point shots, and were ahead 6-0, in the opening minute of the game. However, the Shockers then ran off 13 points in a row and never looked back. They took their first lead of the game, 7-6, on a three-point shot from William Rigby. After the Mingoes made a couple baskets, including another three-point shot, to trail just 13-11 about midway through the opening quarter, the Shockers ended the period on a 12-4 scoring run to push the lead to double digits.

The Shockers picked up their defensive intensity in the second quarter, holding the Mingoes to just seven points, as the lead ballooned to 50-22 at the half. The Shockers continued to pour it on in the third, and took a 78-45 lead into the fourth. The Mingoes never threatened the rest of the way.

The Shockers’ captain, Rigby, had a game-high 23 points on 7-for-10 shooting. He added 15 rebounds and four assists. Point guard Shakwon Lewis came off the bench to score 17 for the Shockers and added four assists. Adam Johnson had a double-double with 15 points and 11 boards, and Lenny Oscar contributed a dozen points, six assists and four rebounds.

Antwan Bevans led the Mingoes with 21 points and 10 rebounds but shot just 6-for-29 from the floor. He was the only player in double figures for the Mingoes. Prolific scorer Kemsy Sylvestre was held to just seven points on 3-for-9 shooting. He added six assists and five rebounds but turned the ball over nine times.

The Shockers shot 54 percent from the floor for the game (40-for-74) compared to just 25 percent for the Mingoes (23-for-91). They outrebounded the Mingoes, 61-52, and dished out 24 assists compared to 16 for the Mingoes.

Game two in the best-of-three series is set for 8:30 p.m. Friday at the A.F. Adderley Gym, and, if necessary, game three will be played next week Monday.

The winner of the series will move on to play the undefeated pennant-winning Commonwealth Bank Giants (16-0) in the NPBA Division I semifinals. The Giants are the defending champions.

Division II

Rockets 96, Stampers 90

The fourth-seeded Sun Oil Rockets managed to hold off a late charge from the fifth-seeded Triple K Stampers to prevail, 96-90, in the opening game of the NPBA playoffs on Monday night at the A.F. Adderley Gym.

The Stampers stayed within striking distance for much of the fourth quarter, getting within one point on one occasion, but they could never complete the comeback by surging ahead. The Rockets made four clutch free shots in the final 10 seconds of the game, after hitting a couple of key baskets late in the game, to come out on top.

Five players scored in double figures for the Rockets. Crosley Wilmore led the way with 15 points, five rebounds and two steals. Craig Gibson, Bertrum Minnis and Stephen Jones added 14 apiece to aid in a balanced scoring attack for the Rockets. Minnis had a near triple-double as he added 11 rebounds and eight assists. He also had three steals. Gibson had six rebounds and three assists. Cameron Chery dropped in 12 points and added nine rebounds and three steals for the Rockets.

Johnley Noel and Michael Turnquest paced the Stampers with 19 points and 11 rebounds apiece. Noel added five steals and three assists. Nathaniel Jean scored 17 points and pulled down seven rebounds for the Stampers, and Troy Trembley and Wilben Seraphin scored 13 apiece. Trembley matched game-high honors with 11 rebounds but turned the ball over six times. Seraphin added five boards and four assists, but also had a high number of turnovers with seven.

The Stampers led 24-21 after the first quarter, but the Rockets stormed ahead 41-36 at the half, and built that lead to double digits, 68-58, at the end of three quarters. The Stampers attempted to come back in the fourth, but fell short at the end.

Game two in the best-of-three first-round series is set for 7:30 p.m. Friday at the A.F. Adderley Gym, and, if necessary game three will be played next week Monday.

The winner of the series will move on to play the pennant-winning Your Essential Store Giants in the NPBA Division II semifinals. The Giants won the pennant with a 13-3 win-loss record.

The NPBA playoffs continue this evening with the third-seeded Aliv Buckets (11-5) taking on sixth-seeded Leno Eagles Nest (6-10) in game one of their best-of-three division two series, and in division one, the sixth-seeded Leno Regulators (5-11) will challenge the third-seeded Discount Distributors Rockets (11-5).The division two game will be played at 7:30 p.m. and the division one game will follow immediately afterwards.

The winner of the division two series between the Buckets and Leno Eagles Nest will move on to play the second-seeded defending champions Breezes High Flyers (12-4) in the NPBA Division II semifinals, and the winner of the division one series between the Regulators and Rockets will move on to play the second-seeded PJ’s Stingers (13-3) in the NPBA Division I semifinals.

The Giants and Stingers secured first-round byes in division one, and the Giants and Flyers earned first-round byes in division two.

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