Sports — 25 February 2017 — by Bernard Wagner
NEBL “In the Paint”

Western Ballaz searches for consistency as they host Bandits

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Feb. 23, 2017–It has been a rollercoaster season so far for the Western Ballaz (2-2) basketball team.  Their season goes like this:  win… loss… win… loss.  A tale of inconsistency, so to speak.

Nevertheless, hopes are running high as they host the visiting Bandits tonight at the Sacred Heart College Auditorium.  They obviously will be looking to gather some consistency from the players that get time on the court, particularly from the Leslies, Troyers and Nolbertos.  In their last outing, they were able to overcome a 7-point fourth quarter deficit to record the 63-56 win against No Limit.  It is apparent that this year’s team is not as explosive offensively as in years past; and, when coupled with a team defense that is right in the middle of the bunch, certainly bares true and validates their inconsistency as a team.

Richard-Troyer,-Darwin-Lesl

On the other hand, the visiting Bandits (3-1), led by their floor general Edgar Mitchell, is looking at the prospects of propelling themselves into first place with a win tonight.  They are currently riding a one-game winning streak, and they are anticipating that, with momentum clearly on their side, they should be able to pull out the win, despite the fact that traditionally they have not done well against the Ballaz, with the latter winning four of the last six meetings since 2014.

In the Paint pick:  Belmopan Bandits

GAME NIGHT MATCH-UP STATS

Western Ballaz 69.2PPG 37.2RPG 10.0APG
Belmopan Bandits 79.0PPG 36.5RPG 16.5APG

 KEY PLAYERS

Darwin Leslie Western Ballaz 18.2PPG 3.3RPG 3.0APG 37.0 F/G%
Edgar Mitchell Bandits 10.7PPG 5.2RPG 7.7APG 39.0F/G%

 Dream Ballers / No Limit – Two teams hoping to build momentum following last week’s wins!!!

After a season that can best be described as up-and-down for both the Dangriga Dream Ballers and Belize City No Limit basketball teams, both teams are hoping that huge wins over the Tiger Sharks and the Hurricanes, respectively, last week, could establish momentum coming into this season-defining weekend.

The Dream Ballers stunned the Tiger Sharks last week, as they exhibited their team’s formula for success – tough defense and rebounds domination.  They are the #1 rebounding team in the league at almost 57 per game, and when combined with a stingy team defense of 66.5 points allowed per game, evidently is their team’s DNA.  This, conventionally speaking, is, and has been a proven winning formula for championship bound teams.

Not to be outdone, Belize City No Limit is riding optimism, after their enormous victory over the defending champs, Hurricanes, last weekend in front of their home fans.  More so, though, the talk in camp this week has been about the stimulus provided by the big guy in the middle, American import Kenny Brown.  He obviously paid early dividends for No Limit, giving them something they have never had – a presence in the middle. Dream-Ballers'-Davis-Guzman

With youngsters Marcus Lewis and Lincey Lopez continuing their buy-in to manager turned coach, David Alamilla’s system, No Limit is poised for a major run.  After all, they have been in all of their last three games, losing the two previous (before last week) by only an average of 6.5 points.  They are banking that the Lincey Lopez (10 pts 5 rebs 8 asst 7 stls) of Saturday night is not a mere mirage, but more a constant.  His hard-nosed quality, blended with Marcus Lewis’ consistency and the inside play of Kenny Brown, gives No Limit a formidable tandem and one that believes they can “play with anybody.”

In the Paint pick:  Dangriga Ballers

GAME NIGHT MATCH-UP STATS

Dream Ballers 67.5PPG 56.7RPG 14.0APG
No Limit 69.6PPG 40.6RPG 16.2APG

KEY PLAYERS

Dillmore Conorquie Dream Ballers 13.2PPG 6.7RPG 2.7APG 23.0F/G%
Lincey Lopez No Limit 7.4PPG 5.0RPG 5.4APG 46.0F/G%

Orange Walk Running Rebels visit Tiger Sharks territory – pursuing winning formula

The San Pedro Tiger Sharks (4-1) will be looking to bounce back when the Orange Walk Running Rebels comes to the island on Saturday night.

Last week, the Ballers from Dangriga put a stranglehold on the Tiger Sharks offense, holding them to almost 30 points under their team average (81.5 ppg) prior to that game.  While the final score was only a five-point differential, the final statistics tell a narrative of absolute domination in all facets of the game.  League leading scorer, San Pedro’s George Williams will obviously have to up his game to another level, while ensuring that other players are involved in the game, and involved early and often.  Kurt Burgess (7.8 ppg 11.8 rpg), as well as Ashton Edwards (15.4 ppg 2.2 rpg) will need to be engaged, both on the offensive and defensive end, in trying to contain the explosive Running Rebels backcourt of Roger Reneau (18.3 ppg 4.6 rpg 6.3 apg) and Randy Usher (11.6 ppg 4.3 apg), as well as inhibiting the inside play of the league’s second leading scorer, James Ewing (19 ppg 11.0 rpg).

This Running Rebels trio is a dangerous trio, and should get even more so, as reliable inside reports are that the Rebels are very close to inking a contract with former Tiger Shark and Belizean American, Gene Myvett, who last year averaged 10.7 ppg 7.7 rpg and 4.1apg, while shooting a remarkable 54% from the field.  If this is so, this acquisition should inevitably turn the Rebels outlook from mere pretender to now contender.

In the Paint pick:  OW Running Rebels

GAME NIGHT MATCH-UP STATS

Tiger Sharks 75.6PPG 41.6RPG 15.0APG
Running Rebels 75.0PPG 25.3RPG 22.0APG

KEY PLAYERS

George Williams Tiger Sharks 23.2PPG 2.4RPG 5.0APG 55.0 F/G%
Roger Reneau Running Rebels 18.3PPG 4.6RPG 6.3APG 54.0F/G%

 

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