Knights disperse Flames in WBA Elite League opener
The Knights, behind 15 points from Daniel Mal-colm in the first game of the highly anticipated start to the Western Basketball Association (WBA) Elite League, rallied to defeat Lucea Flames 60-45 on Saturday night at the Montego Bay Cricket Club.
Julian Walker was the Flames' best shooter, netting 15 points, seven rebounds, two assists, and four steals in an all-round effort.
However, he was upstaged through the sheer determination of the Knights' back court players, led by guard Antoniel Watson.
Watson added 12 points, seven rebounds and two steals for the Knights, as he and Malcolm stole the show, following a very competitive start (9-8) to the first quarter by the Flames.
The Knights, however, came fighting back in the second, although the Flames held their own, going on to own the lead (23-19) at half-time. They would also dominate the second half, to earn the very impressive win.
Sheldon Myrie supported well for the Flames. He had 13 points, three rebounds and three steals in a supporting role to Walker, but it was never enough.
In the night's second game, two of the league's top-rated clubs clashed. Granville Jaguars and Knibb Thunders tore into each other, but it was the Jaguars - led by star point guard Levar Rose with his 14 points and good all-round game - that made the difference, as the Thunders fell 68-47 in surprising fashion.
Rose got help from Michael Johnson and Dwayne Hart, who combined for 23 points and 14 rebounds, while for the Thunders, Martin Belnavis top scored with 19 points, 14 rebounds and two steals for the season's first double-double.
Daniel Henry chipped in with 13 points, five rebounds and four assists for the Thunders, who will next play Lucea Flames on Saturday April 18.
Meanwhile, in the Champion-ship, the lone game at Montego Bay Community College ended in a loss for the home team, which lost 45-52 against Sav Elite Titans.
The Gladiators started positively, but faded soon after, with the Titans looking to punish them through Curtis Anderson, who ended with a double-double - 13 points and 10 rebounds - to add to his five assists and eight steals in a display that would earn him the Man-of-the-Match accolade.
Anderson was most impressive in the third quarter, where he scored the bulk of his points, but it was his defending that took the Titans to victory.
Orville Ennis had a strong game, inclusive of 16 points, eight rebounds and two steals, that threatened to pull the Gladiators to an unlikely victory.