Cheshire Phoenix head coach John Lavery reserved praise for point guard Sedale Hanson-Young after the 19-year-old played a key role in helping his the Nix to a 93-72 success at Leeds Force in the BBL.
Hanson-Young emerged from the bench to hit five points and register two rebounds and three assists as the Nix extended their winning run to three while ending Leeds’ best-ever home run in the league, which had stood at three.
As was the case in the victory over Worcester Wolves a week previous , Cheshire put on an efficient shooting display, connecting with 60% of their field goal attempts (36-60), something that the Force, who beat the Nix a fortnight earlier at the Cheshire Oaks Arena , could not live with.
Akeem Ellis and Kinu Rochford both led the way for Cheshire with 23 apiece, with Ellis hitting five of his nine from three and three from four from inside the arc to continue his hot streak.
Jeff Dirkin put in a superb display at both ends of the court, shooting 77% from the field, including two of his three from downtown, to help him to 16 points. Jordan Williams also had a solid offensive game as he accounted for 15 for Cheshire, who were without the influential David Aliu through injury once again.
But it was the mature performance from Hanson-Young that really caught the eye for Lavery, whose side are back in action tomorrow night when they welcome Manchester Giants to the Cheshire Oaks Arena for a 5.30pm tip.
“We knew what we were getting with Sedale when he joined us in September and is performance in Leeds was a real mature one,” said Lavery.
“We think we are just scratching the surface with him at the minute.”
Leeds made a slow start at the Carnegie Sports Arena before a 15-0 first-quarter run brought them back into contention, but Phoenix, who had lost five in a row before last weekend, were soon in control once more and outscored their hosts in each of following three quarters to push them out to a comfortable 21-point lead at the final buzzer.
Lavery was even able to hand some valuable playing time to Phoenix academy players Ben Goodacre and Max Jones, with the former getting on the board with a free throw and the latter hitting three with a two and one from the charity stripe.
Match Report by Dave Powell for the Chester Chronicle. Photo courtesy of Adam Day Photography.