Bnei Herzliya downs Hapoel TLV, Maccabi devastate Haifa, Nes Ziona clips Holon: Highlights, Recaps, Quotes & More!

Bnei Herzliya dunked Hapoel Tel Aviv 98-86 in a game that was never that close as Coty Clarke helped lead Sharon Drucker’s squad to the victory. Herzliya’s attack was lethal throughout the first half as they went into halftime up 58-45 which included 22 points from Clarke as the club went 12/18 from beyond the arc over the opening 20 minutes while also dishing out 18 assists to help the visitors cruise to the win. Yam Madar starred for the Reds but his fine performance wasn’t enough to will his team to the win.

Clarke scored 25 points and dished out 9 assists, Max Heidegger and Terrell Parks added 15 points each while Abdul Gaddy scored 13 points in the win. Madar led the way for the Reds with 25 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists and Reggie Upshaw scored 19 points in the loss.

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Winning coach Sharon Drucker was very content with his team’s performance, “This was an important game. We knew what we needed to do after the last game and we came to play aggressively. We began the season with an 0-7 and we are doing a good job recovering now. When they were trying to come back we made good decisions on offense and we played with a good flow. We need to play hard and aggressively. I’m very proud of the players.”

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“Everything happened in the first half,” began Hapoel coach Ioannis Kastritis. “We should be more solid and this made Herzliya more comfortable, they finished the first half well offensively we let them feel comfortable. We need to do something extra. The game in Eilat was a game where we really proved how Hapoel Tel Aviv can be this season. Losing la player like JP Tokoto at the last moment before a game is never easy.”

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The star of the show Coty Clarke was all smiles after the game, “I prepared even smarter and even better coming in here tonight in what was a major win. We were able to get things done and we are taking it one game at a time.”

Tel Aviv forward Jonathan Mor also spoke about the game from his point if view, “Herzliya scored with amazing percentages in the first half and when they score like that it’s tough. They rightfully beat us today.”

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Bnei Herzliya came out strong to begin the first quarter as Terrell Parks and Cory Clarke scored inside while Israelis Isaiah Eisendorf and Avitam Zelikowitz found points from the outside as Hapoel Tel Aviv countered with buckets by Yam Madar to take a quick 12-7 lead midway through the frame. Clarke and Parks continued to find the basket and Abdul Gaddy scored a 3-pointer as Madar with a turnaround jumper in the paint and a triple by Jonathan Mor tried to keep the Reds in the game but went down 28-16 after ten minutes.

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Hapoel forward Reggie Upshaw and Madar tried to cut the lead, Clarke and Elijah Thomas countered but Daniel Koperberg with a pair of baskets and a Gabe York bucket pulled Ioannis Kastritis’s squad to within 33-30 with 6:48 left in the second quarter. Max Heidegger nailed a pair of triples, Yair Kravitz added points from downtown while Thomas score easy buckets inside as Clarke drilled home two more 3-pointers to raise his game total to 22 points and give Sharon Drucker’s team a 58-45 advantage at halftime.

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Upshaw scored a layup and drained a 3-pointer from the elbow for Hapoel to get the third quarter underway as Raz Adam also found nothing but net from downtown as the Reds chipped away at the lead, 61-53 midway through the period. Heidegger nailed a triple, Kravitz added a layup and a 3-pointer while a slew of free throws gave Herzliya a 79-65 lead after thirty minutes of play.

Madar scored a layup to begin the 4th quarter, Upshaw and Mor added points inside but Heidegger drilled home a corner triple to keep Herzliya ahead 87-72 with 4:43 remaining in regulation time. Thomas put down a dunk and Gaddy scored a 3-pointer for Herzliya while Madar tried in vain to guide his team to a comeback that wasn’t meant to be as Herzliya polished off an overmatched Hapoel Tel Aviv 98-86.

Maccabi Tel Aviv pounded Maccabi Haifa 95-60 as the Yellow & Blue took an early lead and never looked back. Angelo Caloiaro led the way with 13 points which were scored all in the first half, Oz Blazyer added 12 points while John Dibartolomeo scored 11 points as did youngster Dori Sahar in the win. Michael Cobbins scored 17 points and Michael Brisker chipped in with 13 points in the tough defeat.

“The most important thing from this game was that we were serious and put the stamp on the game early,” explained Maccabi coach Ioannis Sfairopoulos. “The best thing was that I was able to give the three young guys a lot of time to play and have them ready to be able to help the team as well.”

Losing coach Daniel Seoane discussed the precarious situation that his club is in, “We see the standings and we are at the bottom, our short term goal is to get out. We still have many games and most are at home. We have a chance to recover our injured players and have some time off. I’m confident when they we will be back.”

“Since I came up to the first team, the club has given us everything in order to succeed and play,” said Sahar. “I come every day to work hard and I come to compete.”

Nes Ziona downed Hapoel Holon 92-90 on the road to take a hard earned league victory thanks to balanced scoring from Brad Greenberg’s squad how just returned to Israel after having advanced to the FIBA Europe Cup Round of 16. Patrick Miller, Jerome Meyinsse and Tal Dunne all scored 18 points to lead Nes Ziona to get win while Isaiah Miles with 19 points, CJ Harris with 15 points and Chris Johnson with 14 points led Stefanos Dedas’s team in the loss.

It was a great game for the guys and we led for a good potion as well,” began Brad Greenberg. “We showed a lot of grit down the stretch to pull it out and we are playing pretty good basketball now.”

“We had some moments where we didn’t play so smart to kill they game and we paid,” said Dedas following the game.

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