Eagles have a mountain to climb

First published in Sport

NEWCASTLE Eagles must overturn an 11-point deficit against Leicester Riders tomorrow in their quest to reach the BBL play-off final.

The pair, who contested last year's showpiece final that the Riders won, met on Thursday night in Loughborough with the hosts overcoming three regular season defeats against the Eagles to beat the league champions 90-78 in the first leg of the play-off semi-final.

It was Eagles’ first defeat in 14 after picking up the BBL Championship, but despite being 86-64 down at one point, some crucial points from Paul Gause near the end closed the gap to give Fab Flournoy’s men a chance going into tomorrow’s second leg at Sport Central (4pm tip-off).

Flournoy was named Molten Coach of the Year for the fifth time in his career last week.

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