Leopards into Final Fours again

13:00 17 April 2014

Andre Lockhart attacks the basket for Leopards (pic: Paul Phillips)

Andre Lockhart attacks the basket for Leopards (pic: Paul Phillips)


Big Cats beat Bristol in tense clash

Leopards reached their fourth straight Final Fours with a 65-57 victory against Bristol Academy Flyers at a tense Brentwood Centre.

Robert Youngblood’s team will now travel to Manchester on Saturday April 26 to face Leeds Carnegie in the semi-final, with the final taking place the following day.

Howard Crawford again led the Big Cats with 23 points and eight rebounds, but it was guard Andre Lockhart who took the game by the scruff of the neck down the stretch on the way to a 19 point game.

Kris Clark finished with 11 points and five rebounds, while Shaun Durant had 11 boards to go with his six points.

Ultimately it was an 11-0 run in the fourth period sparked by Lockhart which sealed the game as the visitors were held scoreless for almost six minutes,

The home side started slowly with Roy Owen and Greg Streete giving Bristol a 3-0 lead, but a Clark trey started a 9-2 run with Crawford hitting back-to-back baskets.

Four straight Streete free-throws levelled the score at 9-9, but Crawford took his tally to six, and a Courtney Van Beest basket sent Leopards into the first break with a 17-12 lead.

That advantage quickly evaporated as Duane Lautier-Ogunleye buried a three in a 6-0 start to the second period from the visitors, and although baskets from Clark and Durant broke the run, it was only poor foul shooting from the Flyers that kept Leopards in touch.

A Crawford and-one cut the deficit to a single point, but the Flyers went into half-time 33-30 ahead as Jordan Rankine beat the buzzer.

Streete – who along with Lautier-Ogunleye led his side with 15 points – made it a five-point game with the opening shot of the second half, but straight Lockhart points put Leopards 39-38 ahead with three third period minutes left.

A pair of Owen baskets put Bristol ahead again, and although Lockhart’s and-one gave Leopards a one-point lead, treys from Streete and Tomas Okros sent Bristol into the final break 50-47 up.

Lautier-Ogunleye opened the fourth period scoring before Lockhart and Crawford pulled Leopards within a point, and Doug McLaughlin-Williams scored their final field goal of the game as he sunk a three with 7:24 on the clock to put his side 55-51 ahead.

Lockhart halved the deficit but after a 90-second lull in scoring Crawford sunk a single free-throw to make it a one-point game.

A Crawford dunk off Clark’s assist gave Leopards’ the lead with 4:06 to go before a massive block from Durant on Streete brought the crowd to its feet.

Clark made it a three-point game with a pair of foul shots and Crawford dunked off his assist before the game was effectively sealed with 99 seconds left as Crawford blocked McLaughlin-Williams’ three-pointer, grabbed the rebound and fed the ball for Clark to dunk and put Leopards 60-55 ahead.

Clark made it a seven-point game before Lautier-Ogunleye ended Bristol’s drought from the foul line, but Crawford slammed another massive dunk down before Lockhart wrapped up the win at the foul line.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Romford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Romford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Romford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Romford Sports News

41 minutes ago

Urchins manager praises squad after downing Towners

Elliot Justham of Dagenham & Redbridge kept a clean sheet against Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Ned Keating provides player ratings following the 1-0 National League win at home to Aldershot Town

Slaven Bilic at his Press Conference at Rush Green

Hammers manager Slaven Bilic is expecting a big London derby against the Blues

Corey Whitely of Dagenham & Redbridge is congratulated after scoring against Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

Daggers boss overjoyed with how season is progression following Shots victory

West Ham legend Tony Cottee

Our West Ham columnist says the police must be there to protect supporters inside the London Stadium

Leon McKenzie netted a hat-trick in Hornchurch's win at Enfield Town (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Enfield Town 1 Hornchurch 4

Yesterday, 21:38
Corey Whitely of Dagenham & Redbridge and Idris Kanu of Aldershot Town (pic: David Simpson/TGS Photo)

National League: Dagenham & Redbridge 1 (Whitely 80) Aldershot Town 0

Yesterday, 19:00
NBA Crossover is a cultural exhibition in London displaying the convergence of the NBA and popular culture through the ages (pic: Pitch).

Steve Nash will make an appearance at free event in Shoreditch to show support for exhibition in partnership with NBA 2K17 and Foot Locker

Breaking News

There is queuing traffic on the A13 after a crash between two cars and a van.

There is queuing traffic on the A13 after a crash between two cars and a van.

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport


Show Job Lists

News from your area


Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.


£3,000 goes a long way at Boots

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now