Leeds Force 68 Cheshire Phoenix 88: Force suffer first defeat as Phoenix break duck

Rob Marsden netted his 1,000th BBL point but it couldn't stop Leeds Force losing out to Cheshire Phoenix.
Rob Marsden netted his 1,000th BBL point but it couldn't stop Leeds Force losing out to Cheshire Phoenix.
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Leeds Force suffered their first defeat of the season at the hands of the Cheshire Phoenix at the Carnegie Sports Arena going down 68-88.

Four of the five starters for the Force scored double-figure points with Jermaine Sanders at the top of the list with 23 but it came in vein as the visitors blew them away in the second half.

In the opening exchanges it was difficult to separate the two sides with both failing to open a gap wider than a basket.

Leeds then settled down nicely as Rob Marsden sank his 1,000th BBL point which sent the Force on a scoring run.

A 10-0 run opened a seven-point lead for the Force but in the last two minutes of the first quarter they allowed Cheshire to level the game at 21-21.

The Force dominated the second quarter with Sanders bagging 10 points in an 11-4 run which gave them a double-digit lead over the Phoenix.

Cheshire looked to go on another late charge through Josh Fox but the Force were not about to surrender another lead.

Clayfell Harris’ basket with two seconds left in the half gave Leeds a comfortable 12-point gap at the halfway stage.

A big comeback from the Phoenix in third blew the Force away as Marcell Mosley scored 11 points, on his way to a game high 30, for the away side to turn a 12-point deficit to a three-point lead.

The comeback came down to a 13-2 run in favour of the side from the North West as the Force fell apart.

Cheshire carried the momentum into the final quarter as they cruised to victory, winning by 20 points for their first win of the current campaign.

Andrew Hambleton.

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