Newcastle Eagles 120 Leeds Force 68: Early hope gives way to the inevitable

Leeds Force head coach, Danny Nelson.
Leeds Force head coach, Danny Nelson.
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A second defeat in as many months on Tyneside condemned Leeds Force to a 20th consecutive BBL loss of a catastrophic campaign, slumping to a 120-68 defeat against Newcastle Eagles, WRITES SEB GIGNER.

The new-look Force looked to make their numerical advantage pay against an ailing Newcastle in the initial stages – bursting into life seconds into the contest behind a smart George Brownell basket and a timely treble from British-American threat Adrian Kuyinu.

Facing a lack of options through injury, the depleted Eagles began to lean on deadly American duo Saah Nimley and Jaysean Paige to decimate a vulnerable Leeds defense.

The US marksmen mercilessly sank a quick-fire flurry of trebles to prise open a double-digit Newcastle lead and emphatically halt Force’s first-quarter momentum.

Leeds’ impressive first period effort was soon diminished by a nightmarish second segment, as Newcastle ramped up the pressure and stamped on the gas pedal to shatter Leeds’ hopes of claiming a surprise victory.

A barren pointless run heading into half-time left Force at the mercy of the Eagles – as Newcastle comfortably powered into a decisive 25-point lead.

Kuyinu’s spinning finish and an impressive solo shot from new-signing Aiman Rezk looked to have offered Leeds a lifeline to open the third, before the clinical Eagles inevitably tightened their talons.

Newcastle showcased their pedigree in a dominant penultimate period, pouring in 37 points.

A series of fancy finishes from Kuyinu restored some pride for the fatigued Force.

Debutant Force duo Morakinyo Williams and Vytautas Kamarunas proved the shining lights late on.

Leeds Force's Isaac Mourier.  Picture: Bruce Rollinson

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