23rd Jul, 2019

Wolves have point to prove

Correspondent 21st Mar, 2019

BASEMENT side Worcester Wolves will look to avenge their single-point defeat to Manchester Giants in a double overtime thriller earlier this season when they tackle the north west side at the University of Worcester Arena.

Wolves take on the Giants on Friday (tip off 7.30pm) and the combatants will take to the court again with the Wolfpack hoping the home side can avenge the agonising 124-123 defeat last month.

Tony Garbelotto’s men came out on the wrong end of an up-and-down encounter to drop to a 92-79 defeat at Glasgow Rocks on Sunday.

Wolves put an error-strewn first-quarter behind them to take a 45-38 half-time lead before once more digging a hole that was this time too deep to climb out of.

By four minutes into the afternoon Glasgow were 9-2 ahead, with Worcester having already given up a trio of turnovers. By the end of the opening period that tally of gifts to their opponents had more than doubled, contributing to a 19-12 Scottish advantage.

But the second quarter saw a change in fortunes. Once Darell Combs had debuted on the scoresheet he then found his every touch turning to gold as he scored 15 pre-interval points.

After Robert Crawford was dragged to the floor by his defender he got up to sink the awarded foul shots. From the next possession Combs drove powerfully to the hoop to tie matters up at 28-28.

Deshawn Freeman produced a one-handed dunk to finalise a 16-4 explosion and have his team striding confidently to the locker-rooms.

However, any Worcester swagger disappeared following half-time. Shot-clock violations, players stepping out of bounds, spurned free throws and an embarrassing airball had the visitors reeling.

Rocks held sway at 70-57 entering the final quarter. A brief flurry of scoring from Crawford and a Freeman breakaway slam closed the gap to 78-70 with four minutes remaining.

That flicker of resistance was extinguished by a smooth double of three-pointers from Glasgow’s Great Britain forward Gareth Murray.

Crawford and Combs led Wolves’ scorers with 20 and 17 points respectively. Freeman on 15 points and Lester Prosper on 12 were the only others to break into double-figure scoring.

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