13th Apr, 2021

Wolves bash Rocks to move closer to top four

Rob George 20th Mar, 2021

WOLVES righted the wrongs of their narrow defeat at Glasgow Rocks last weekend when punishing the same opponents 93-74 at the University of Worcester Arena.

An initially close contest was broken open at five minutes before half-time when Wolves produced a 17-4 outburst that propelled them to an overpowering 44-31 advantage, establishing superiority and leaving no way back for the Scottish club.

“The players responded really well today after last week’s loss north of the border,” said coach Matt Newby.

“Once we became more assertive in the second quarter we broke away. We tightened up our defence, got a rhythm going and were very selfless.

“When the loss and the reasons for it are fresh in your mind you’ll tend to be more receptive to change and have a desire to perform to your best – I thought the boys did that today.”

Brandon Anderson notched a handy half-dozen points in the early going, taking a layup, after receiving the ball from injury-returnee Jordan Williams and when slicing to the hoop.

Mike Parks similarly secured first-quarter successes, aiding a 19-17 edge for the hosts.

A to-me-to-you spell put matters at 23-23 in the fourth minute of the second period when Rocks took a timeout. By four minutes later they were again calling for a break, but now with greater alarm after consecutive right-corner three-pointers from Josh McSwiggan had put them 36-29 in arrears.

Williams stepped around Glasgow’s seven-footer Ronald Delph for his first score and Anderson carried on dancing inside to widen the gap.

McSwiggan took aim again as the second half began and was the man in the middle to accept a Williams hand-off that he in turn passed on to Parks for a 49-34 lead.

The irrepressible McSwiggan now positioned himself in the left-corner of the court for his fourth and fifth triples of the match as Wolves thumped their way to a swaggering 54-34 score-line.

The home advantage was maintained at 68-49 entering the final quarter as players jostled to impress. Micah Elan and Henry Wilkins accepted invitations to the three-point party, Anderson continued to sweep past defenders and back-up centre Daniel Johnson-Thompson profited from Williams’ assists as the evening wound down.

Anderson led the scoring with 26 points, followed by 17 for McSwiggan. Williams was a step away from a double-double stat-line after grabbing ten rebounds and supplying nine assists for his teammates.

“Josh is a pure shooter,” credited Newby. “He has a point to prove after being out of our rotation due to injury.”

Wolves are next in action this Wednesday (March 24) when they visit Manchester Giants to seek revenge for a 98-78 defeat a month ago.

“Since we last played them, they’ve hired an exceptional new coach in Lloyd Gardner and have made a very good pickup in Aaron Geramipoor,” added Newby.

“We have to make sure we continue to play selfless ball and execute our game.”

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