Plymouth Raiders travelled to Surrey Sports Park in the first round of the BBL Cup on Sunday to face the Surrey Scorchers. For the first time this season, Raiders had a full squad following international clearance for Kinu Rochford and the return from injury of Estonian Joonas Järveläinen.
Rochford started for the Raiders along with Brandon Penn and captain Zac Wells in the front court, with Neil Watson and Denzel Ubiaro making up the backcourt. Wells won the tip off and following a miss from Penn, Rochford picked up his first of seven offensive rebounds tipping the ball back to Penn for the first two points of the game. An evenly matched first period saw both teams trade baskets with Raiders edging the quarter 20 – 17.
Penn and Dylan Costello added a couple of baskets for the Raiders to start the second before a 10 – 0 Surrey run was halted by an Eddie Matthews three with 5:47 remaining in the quarter. Two successful free throws from Penn put the Raiders in front again 29 – 27 but another Surrey run to finish the half saw them hold a seven point, 38 – 31 lead going into the break.
Early in the third, Surrey stretched their lead to ten before strong play from Ubiaro and Rochford saw the Raiders pull the game back and take a one point lead halfway through the period. Both teams traded baskets with no team taking more than a four point lead for the remainder of the quarter but it was Surrey who held a 57 – 55 lead with ten minutes to play.
Ubiaro tied the game once again for the Raiders to start the fourth period but that was as close as it was to get for the Raiders. Led by eight points from Joshua Steel, Surrey took the final quarter 17 – 16 and won the game 74 – 71 to send Raiders out of the cup and set themselves up with an away tie at Sheffield Sharks in the quarter finals.
Rochford led the Raiders on his debut with 20 points and 10 rebounds supported by Watson on 12, Ubiaro with 11 and Penn also on 11 to go with eight rebounds. Surrey were led by former Raider Gerald Robinson on 18 and captain Tayo Ogedengbe and guard Tony Hicks on 14 each.
Raiders return to Championship action next week with another away game at Manchester Giants on Sunday 29 October, 17:00 tip.
|October 22, 2017||2:00 pm||BBL Cup||2017 - 2018|
|Surrey Sports Park|
|Richard Meyjes Rd, Guildford GU2 7YW, UK|
|5||Neil Watson||Point Guard||12||4||3||1||0||4||15||26.7||2||10||20.0||2||2||100.0||2||2||1||4|
|13||Louis Sayers||Small Forward||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|