DEFENSIVE frailties meant Worcester Wolves slipped to their fourth British Basketball League defeat of the season as they lost 102-79 to Cheshire Phoenix in Ellesmere Port on Sunday.
Danny Huffor opened his scoring account against his former club to help Wolves to a 30-22 lead with two minutes remaining in the first quarter, but by this point Marek Klassen had been forced off after picking up two personal fouls and Phoenix were then able to pin their visitors back at 32-30.
Within a minute of Klassen returning to the court in the second period he was whistled for a third infraction, leaving him once again out of the action.
A speculative triple on the half-time buzzer from Cheshire guard Marcel Mosley then helped the hosts to a 55-49 advantage.
In Worcester’s opening two possessions of the second-half, both Trevor Setty and Alex Navajas were called for travelling with the ball, aiding Phoenix to stretch their lead going into the third quarter.
Cheshire’s Josh Wilcher made sure there would be no comeback when he made a simply-executed bucket to gain firm control for his team at 80-63.
Deondre McWhorter and Jermel Kennedy led the scoring for Wolves with 17 points apiece.
Assistant coach Alex Radu said: “Our defence let us down. Against Surrey we had problems defensively, but our offense bailed us out. We misfired in both areas against Cheshire.”
The loss followed a 90-82 victory over Surrey Scorchers on Friday night at the University of Worcester Arena as Andrew Bachman floated home four three-pointers at the death to gift Wolves the win.
The Wolfpack host Newcastle Eagles this Friday (tip off 7.30pm), where a fund-raising event will be held in aid of ‘Smileforjoel’, a charity set up in conjunction with Victim Support following the death of University of Worcester student Joel Richards, who was just 19-years-old when he was killed in the Tunisian terror attack of June 2015.