Sheffield Sharks snap Leeds Force’s streak to win first Yorkshire derby of BBL season

Kwan Waller top-scored for Leeds Force with 23 points, but it couldn't prevent defeat to Sheffield Sharks.

Kwan Waller top-scored for Leeds Force with 23 points, but it couldn't prevent defeat to Sheffield Sharks.

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SHEFFIELD SHARKS ran out 85-71 winners in the first Yorkshire derby of the season as Leeds Force lost their last home game of the year.

Jerrold Brooks was the star of the night, scoring an incredible 33 points with five rebounds and five assists.

Kwan Waller wasn’t far behind Brooks as he had a stand out performance for Leeds, scoring 23 points with a 57 per cent average within the arc.

The Sharks asserted early dominance in the first quarter as they started and finished on top.

Brooks racked up 10 early points as the visitors went on two, six-point streaks that saw them pull away from the Force.

A Louis Sayers’ three from the corner saw the Force take the lead but it only lasted a matter of seconds as Brooks drove down the court to restore the Sharks lead.

Sheffield never let the lead slip again in the game as they started to pull away from the Force as the rest of the team got points on the board to end the quarter 23-13 up.

The Sharks started the second even better than the first as they scored 12 points in the first three minutes.

A two from D’Andre Bullard sandwiched in the Sharks run was the only highlight in a disastrous spell for Leeds.

Waller and Bullard chipped away at the Sharks lead which sat as high as 22 to end the half 18 points behind last year’s BBL League runners-up.

A strong performance in the third from the Force halved the Sharks deficit to just nine going into the last.

The Force came out raining three-pointers with Sayers, Bullard and Waller all scoring.

Waller scored 13 points in the third as the Force got themselves right back into the game as they took the game to Sheffield.

The Sharks tried to kerb Leeds’ momentum with Brooks and Robinson sinking baskets, but the Force maintained the pressure - a triple from Waller on the buzzer cutting the deficit to seven points going into the fourth.

But the Sharks had other ideas as they went on an eight-point streak early on in the final quarter.

Triples from Sayers and Bethune late on weren’t enough for the Force as the lead created by their Yorkshire neighbours was just too much.

The foul count shot up as the Force grew frustrated, which allowed the Sharks easy points from the free throw line.

In the end the Sharks were too strong, leapfrogging the Force in the table.

Leeds Force coach Matt Newby.

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