BCM Gravelines beat Hapoel Migdal Jerusalem 75-91 on the road Tuesday evening at Goldberg Arena in the Israeli capital to improve to 3-0 and secure sole possession of first place in Group A. Although the visitors led from start to finish, Hapoel fought back from a 41-53 halftime deficit to reach 57-59 midway in the third quarter. But whenever the hosts got close, Gravelines had the answer, especially from downtown, where it doubled the home team’s output by hitting 14 triples. Rudy Jomby led Gravelines with 19 points, including 5 of 7 from beyond the arc, while Andrew Albicy added 18 points and Juby Johnson scored 12. Hapoel was paced by DJ Strawberry, with 20 points, Brian Randle scored 15 and Jarvis Varnado tallied 12 points, 11 rebounds and 2 blocks. Hapoel slipped to 1-2 with the loss.
Gravelines ran out to a 2-11 lead to open the game on triples by Jomby and Albicy. As soon as Luke Jackson answered from downtown for Jerusalem, Jomby drained another to set the score at 5-14. The score moved ahead on free throws before Varnado put in a layup and Strawberry hit 5 consecutive points to pull the hosts to 14-17. After Jackson buried a triple and Pape Sy hit a two-pointer, Johnson ended the quarter with a bomb from downtown to put Gravelines up 17-22. Johnson found the range again from deep to open the second to extend the margin to 17-25, then a flurry of points by both teams pushed the score to 21-27. Gravelines bumped the lead to 23-33, the first double-digit margin of the night, on two-pointers by Yannick Bokolo and JK Edwards. Hapoel ended the Gravelines run on a jumper by Dan Grunfeld and dunk by Randle, then Grunfeld answered Dounia Issa’s layup with a triple to slice the lead to 30-38. The team exchanged points to push the score to 34-43. Randle battled hard inside, scoring Hapoel’s next 7 points, but Jomby came up with a triple to keep the hosts at arm’s length, 41-48. The final points of the half belonged to Albicy, who hit free throws and a three-pointer to put Gravelines out front 41-53.
Hapoel cut the lead to 45-53 to open the half on a layup by Varnado and jumper by Strawberry, but Cyril Akpomedah drained a triple to restore the visitors’ double-digit lead, 45-56. Jerusalem kept battling and scored the next 7 points, capped by a Strawberry laser from downtown to close the gap to 52-56. After Albicy pushed back with a triple of his own, Hapoel answered with a free throw, and two-pointers each by Randle and Yuval Naimy to get closer, 57-59. Then Jomby came up big again, putting in a layup and knocking down a triple to give Gravelines breathing room again, 57-64. After Varnado and Jackson scored for Hapoel, Jomby hit another from downtown to maintain the lead, 62-67. Edwards and Albicy added two-pointers for Gravelines, then Strawberry hit 5 straight to end the quarter, including a triple, to keep it close, 67-71. After Naimy opened the fourth with a jumper, the next 5 points belonged to Gravelines on two-pointers by Bokolo and Sy, putting the score at 69-76. Strawberry countered with free throws, but then Johnson hit a free throw and triple to open a 71-80 gap with four minutes to go. The visitors added to the margin as Edwards hit a layup and Albicy produced in 5 straight points, inflating the lead to 73-89 with a minute left and wrapping up the win.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011