FORMER champions Tivoli Wizards chalked up their first win of the season when they held off a late burst from Linkup All-Stars to come out 70-65 winners in the 2013 FLOW/National Basketball League (NBL) at the National Stadium Courts last Thursday.The Wizards squandered big leads on numerous occasions, including a last quarter 17-point lead before surviving at the finish.It was also the Edward Marshall-coached Wizards’ first win from two outings after their humiliating defeat at the hands of defending champions Urban Knights at the opening game of the season at the UTech Auditorium.For Linkup’s coach, Dave McFarlane, it was his third defeat from as many games, and at this stage he needs to improve on his remaining matches.The principal scorers for the winners were Andy Smith with 15 points, four rebounds, three steals and three assists, and teammate Deno Hibbert with 11 points, nine rebounds and two steals.For Linkup, Jermaine Peart got 20 points, four rebounds and four steals, Garfield Cephas had 17 points and seven steals, and Aquare Ferguson scored 10 points. The quarterly scores for the winners were 20-19, 43-35, and 59-49.Meanwhile, Selassie Gardens defeated Runnin Rebels 64-52. Selassie Gardens were winning their third consecutive game from as many starts, while it was Rebels’ second loss from three outings.Principal scorers for the winners were Michael Johnson with 14 points, seven rebounds, three steals and six assists, Jermaine Jackson with 14 points, four rebounds, Roger Chisholm with 11 points, two rebounds, two steals and two assists.For the Rebels, the scorers were Kemar McLeish with 18 points, nine rebounds and two steals, Omari Green with 10 points and three rebounds. Quarterly scorers for the winners were 16-14, 36-29, and 46-40.The NBL continues today at the National Stadium Basketball Courts with Flames going up against Jamaica Defence Force at 6:00 pm, while defending champions Urban Knights take on Spartans at 7:45 pm.It will be Knights’ fourth match, while it will be the Spartans’ second game.Jamaica Defence Force will be playing their fourth game, while the Flames will be playing their second game.Meanwhile, matches that were scheduled for last Friday and Sunday were all postponed owing to the inclement weather which affected the island at the weekend.
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