Pini Gershon and his players are now 40 minutes away from winning their 46th championship. This after the 85-72 win over Ironi Iscar Nahariya in the semi final of the Final Four.
There were a lot of expectations from this evening but the outcome was disappointing. Only 6,000 spectators, a dull atmosphere and some mediocre basketball.
The first game was close and dramatic but in the second game, although Maccaboi never reached its potential they won comfortably. Only the fact that Maccabi players missed 15 free throws, gave the northerners the illusion that they have a chance.
Maccabi took an 18-10 lead but at the end of the first quarter Nahariya came back to 19-17. They even led 30-27 in the fourth minute of the second period but saw Maccabi run 9-0 and at half time Maccabi’s lead was 46-39.
Avi Ashekanazi’s team cut the margin to 53-50 but that was as close as they got. At the end of thre thir period Maccabu’s lead was 67-59 and finally the Yellows won by 13 pts.
Tal Burstein and Maceo Baston were Maccabi’s top players. Tal scored 13 pts in 62% FG (only 33% FT), pulled down 10 rbds & dished out 4 assists. Maceo scored 18 pts in 73% FG, grabbed 11 rbds; made 3 steals & blocked one shot.
Other Maccabi scorers: Parker 16 pts, 5 rbds & 7 asts, Solomon 15 pts, Vujcic 10 pts, 7 rbds & 7 asts, Green 8 pts, Sharp 5 pts.
Top scorers for Nahariya: Wells 17 & 6 rbds, Young 16 pts & 5 rbds, Hill 15 pts & 6 rbds.
Horace Jenkins scored one free throw with 0.7 to go to give Hapoel Migdal Jerusalem a 66-65 win over Maccabi Rishon Letsion. Five minutes from time Jerusalem held a 60-47 lead but in a final rush, Guy Goodes’ team came very close to an upset.