Hapoel Tel Aviv put on a dominating performance in coach Ioannis Kastritis’s debut to take a 91-80 win over Jerusalem in the Capital City. The Tel Aviv Reds were in control from the get go as Mark Lyons (23 points/11 assists), Latavious Williams (21 points/8 rebounds), Jordan Hamilton (19 points) and Tomer Ginat (17 points/9rebounds) made sure to head back home with the victory. The closest Jerusalem came was when they narrowed the gap to 66-62 in the fourth quarter thanks to 8 straight points by Tashawn Thomas (23 points) but it wasn’t enough to send Oded Katash’s squad to their second Israeli league loss in a row and three out of their last four.
Hapoel Tel Aviv started the game strong as Latavious Williams inside while Tashawn Thomas did the same for Hapoel Jerusalem in the early going. Mark Lyons, Jordan Hamilton and Tomer Ginat got to work midway through the first quarter for TLV while Nimrod Levi tried to keep Oded Katash’s squad close as they ended the frame down 21-17 to the visitors.
Mark Lyons continued his hot hand from yesterday outside and Hamilton scored on the inside as Ioannis Kastritis’s team increased their lead to 30-22 with six minutes left in the second quarter. Williams kept finding the bottom of the basket as did Hamilton while Lyons went from deep once again but a 3-pointer, floater and jumper from J’Covan Brown kept the Capital City Reds hanging around as Tel Aviv took a 41-35 advantage into halftime.
Hamilton opened the second half with a triple but Shelvin Mack came back with a reverse layup, however, Lyons put in a layup of his own over big man Idan Zalmanson as Hapoel Aviv bumped us their lead to 48-39 midway through the third quarter. Willams put down his second alley-oop of the game and Lyons glided two a pair of layups but Tamir Blatt hit back to back triples plus free throws, however Hapoel Tel Aviv maintained the upper hand 64-54 after thirty minutes.
Thomas scored eight straight Jerusalem points to pull the Reds to within four, 66-62 but Tomer Ginat hit a corner three to relieve some of the pressure early on in the fourth quarter. Ginat continued to score from outside and Lyons sliced his way into the paint to put Hapoel Tel Aviv in the drivers seat with a 78-66 lead and 4:28 remaining in regulation. Ginat sent another triple into the Arena buckets and Williams did the same from the paint as the Tel Aviv Reds took home a 91-80 win.