Wolves start life at Arena with memorable win - The Worcester Observer

Wolves start life at Arena with memorable win

Worcester Editorial 7th Oct, 2013 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016   0

WORCESTER Wolves made the perfect start to life at their brand new home after earning a brilliant hard-fought victory against reigning BBL champions Leicester Riders.

A sold-out University of Worcester Arena crowd of more than 1,500 fans witnessed Paul James’ side make it two league wins out two following their win at Surrey United last weekend.

On a memorable night (Friday) for the club, Wolves laid down an early marker for what could happen this season by impressively pulling away from last season’s treble-winning side to win a tight contest 73-61.

A close-fought first quarter between the sides saw former Leicester star Zaire Taylor impress as he helped his new side take the lead following Andrew Sullivan’s high dunk which began the scoring.

Trailing 18-13 at the start of the second quarter, the Riders pegged Wolves back thanks to the athletic skill of Great Britain captain Sullivan. A three-pointer from guard Jay Couisnard put the visitors back ahead forcing Paul James to call a time-out.

Leicester remained ahead but Wolves were given a huge boost just before half time when new signing Disraeli Lufadeju thrilled the crowd with a super long-range effort which dramatically hit the backboard before finding its way through the net.

Jamal Williams levelled the scores at the start of the second half before consecutive triples from Caylin Raftopoulos and Will Creekmore helped the hosts return into the lead at 44-39.

But their lead was reduced to just a single point later in the third period when Connor Washington hit home a three-pointer for Leicester to set up a thrilling final quarter of play.

But it was to be Wolves’ day when Taylor struck vital points when it mattered to give his side a cushion of a lead which proved too big for Leicester to handle.

Alex Owumi and Stefan Djukic also contributed late on to seal a memorable win for Wolves on a special day in the club’s history.

After the game James said he was delighted with his team’s display as well as the crowd’s brilliant support.

“I’m thrilled with how we performed, especially defensively, holding back last year’s champions,” he said.

“I could see the staff at the arena were pulling out extra seating just before the tip off and the fans created a fantastic atmosphere.

“The way everything turned out was a fitting start for the Wolves in a great new venue.”

Wolves return to league action on Thursday evening (October 10) when they face the London Lions at the Copper Box – one of the venues of last year’s London Olympic Games.


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