Sports — 17 February 2018 — by Berisford Codd, Jr. ©
Looking ahead: NEBL Week 5 Preview

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Feb. 15, 2018– Week 4 of the NEBL is now in the books, and fans across Belize are left with more questions than answers! With a quarter of the season now complete, the San Pedro Tiger Sharks (3-0) sit atop the standings after dismantling the Belmopan Bandits (1-2), Verdes Basketball (0-3) and the Smart Belize Hurricanes (2-1). The Dangriga Dream Ballers (3-0) have been as impressive in its three games, winning by an average of 16 points per game.

After an ugly performance in San Pedro, the Smart Belize Hurricanes bounced back in a big way by defeating the Orange Walk Running Rebels 72-53. The Hurricanes finally returned to their vaunted defence by limiting the Running Rebels to only 30% shooting from the field.  While the Hurricanes shot an impressive 56% from the field, their lack of perimeter shooting was on full display yet again. Through three games, the Hurricanes have only connected on 6 of 38 three point attempts for 15.8%, a glaringly low mark that signals that teams will begin packing the paint against the Hurricanes’ size and slashing. Coach Wagner may have to locate some extra minutes at the small forward spot for young Marcus Lewis, who is responsible for half of the Hurricanes three point makes, while only playing 9 minutes per game.

With the Hurricanes out of the way, let’s take a look at this week’s action!

Verdes Basketball vs Digicell Belize City Defenders – Sacred Heart Auditorium, San Ignacio – February 16, 2018 … Tip off at 9:00 p.m. (Televised on TNC10)

Verdes Basketball (0-3) will be looking to secure its first win this Friday in San Ignacio, as they host the Digicell Belize City Defenders (1-1) in this week’s nationally televised matchup.  After parting ways with Head Coach Matthew Smiling and beefing up its roster, Verdes is looking to restart its trajectory and make a serious run towards the playoffs…

The Defenders, who play their first road game of the season, will be looking to recover from that major gut punch suffered at the hands of Luther Page and the Belmopan Bandits…

Coach Troy Gabb, Jr., who was unceremoniously ejected in the 2nd quarter against the Bandits, shall be paying close attention to his bench, which has been night (50 points) and day (9 points) in the Defenders’ opening two games. The game should be there for the Defenders taking if they can locate a consistent third scoring option!

Belmopan Bandits vs Orange Walk Running Rebels – UB Gym, Belmopan– February 16, 2018 … Tip off at 9:00 p.m.

Coming off an impressive win against the Defenders, the Bandits (1-2) will be looking to build momentum against the lowly Running Rebels (0-3). Guided by the steady hand of their Captain, Stephen “Muerte” Williams, the Bandits now seem poised to enter the conversation as a serious playoff contender…

Orange Walk faces the first must win game of the season, both for their record and the devotion of Rebels faithful. The Rebels have been blown off the court in their first three games, losing by an average of 26.33 points per game! Now under the guidance of Interim Head Coach Kheen Pelayo, the Rebels will look to re-energize their already distraught fan base…

The Rebels are definitely the most difficult team to get a read on, so let’s just see if they will play with HEART in Belmopan!

Dangriga Dream Ballers vs San Pedro Tiger Sharks – Russell “Chiste” Garcia Auditorium, Dangriga – February 17, 2018 … Tip off at 9:00 p.m.

In the first marquee matchup of the early season, the league’s two remaining undefeated teams will dance in the Culture Capital. The Dream Ballers (3-0) have shown that they are comfortable playing with big leads and managing the pressure of close games. Last week’s comeback victory against Verdes highlighted the ability of the Dream Ballers to lock in defensively and score efficiently in possession basketball. This team looks incredibly motivated and well coached, with the look of a team that believes the season will be a disappointment if they do not bring the title to Dangriga…

 After their first break in the schedule, the Tiger Sharks will look to pick up where they left off, when they easily handled the cold shooting Hurricanes in San Pedro, 73-58. The Tiger Sharks, now playing their third road game, have been beating teams by an average of 18 points, the highest margin in the league. Coach Rico Black, always a hungry and fearless competitor, will have his team ready to face the hostile crowd expected in Dangriga…

Enjoy the Clash of the Titans!!!

Related Articles


About Author

Deshawn Swasey

(0) Readers Comments

Comments are closed.