Jerusalem gets by Eilat 82-74, Cornelius + Carrington star as Reds head to WINNER Cup Semis

Sep 23, 2022 | Holyland Hoops

Hapoel Jerusalem got by a pesky Hapoel Eilat 82-74 as Or Cornelius and Khadeen Carrington led the way to help the Reds advance to the Winner Cup semifinals. Both squads went back and forth over the course of the first thirty minutes but Carrington with important baskets in the paint and Cornelius’s outside shooting paced Aleksandar Dzikic’s team to the win.

Carrington led the way with 27 points, Cornelius added 21 points while Oz Blayzer scored 13 points and Speedy Smith dished out 10 assists in the victory. Eric Griffin scored 19 points and Jared Terrell added 12 points in the loss.

“During the summer where we were preparing the preseason opponents and Eilat was the first game we played,” Jerusalem coach Dzikic began. “I have a lot of respect for this team and coach because Eilat is tough. We decided to stay here and play as many games as possible to play Israeli teams as the competition in the domestic league here is different.”

Aleksandar Dzikic – Photo Credit: Yehuda Halickman

“We have nine new players who are playing here and for now it’s been a good move that we are playing in Israel and didn’t go abroad. I don’t mind if we would lose as I’m looking at the big picture. All the teams that we played in the preseason are different and this one was physical and played switching defense. I liked the fact that every game for us someone else steps up. I’m not sure why some people underestimate Eilat they are a very good team, physical and tough.”

“The first three quarters we played well, the last frame we fell apart and we were a bit tired,” Silat bench boss Beit Halachmi said. “We had 10 turnovers through three quarters and 6 turnovers in the last quarter and it was without a dominant ball handler. We are doing nicely but we still need another week to get the players really into the swing of things.”

Or Cornelius- Photo Credit: Yehuda Halickman

The game MVP Or Cornelius looked back at the game, “Eilat is a very strong team, we knew what it was going to be despite them not having three very important players. We have to keep working and improve. We have a deep squad and any day another player can lead us in scoring.”

Eilat big man Nate Grimes also spoke about the contest that was, “We played good as a team until the fourth quarter and we missed a lot of key rebounds and the defense wasn’t there. I don’t want to call it fatigue but we work hard every day at practice. I thought I could contribute more.”

Nate Grimes – Photo Credit: Yehuda Halickman

Hapoel Eilat got busy early as Nate Grimes hit his shots from the outside and the inside while Jared Terrel also filled the basket but Hapoel Jerusalem received nice play from Or Cornelius with a pair of 3-pointers to keep the Reds close as the Red Sea City squad took a 22-18 lead after ten minutes of play.

Jerusalem came back strong in the second quarter as Khadeen Carrington paced Aleksandar Dzikic’s squad topping off his play with a nifty bucket off a nice pass from Siim Sander Vene while Eric Griffin got busy for Ariel Beit Halachmi’s team with points of his won as the half ended all knotted up at 36-36.

Khadeen Carrington – Photo Credit: Yehuda Halickman

Levi Randolph started to pick up points in the third quarter while Cornelius hit a pair of triples as Speedy Smith distributed the ball with authority, but a fine frame by Netanel Artzi and Amit Gershon gave Eilat a 55-54 lead after thirty minutes of action.

Carrington scored in bunches to get the fourth quarter underway but Terran Petteway hit a pair of 3-pointers to even up the score at 65-65 midway through the period. Carrington out down a dunk, Cornelius drilled home yet another one from deep while the duo each scored again to wrap up the victory.

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