Leopards make it four on the bounce

Asante Sandiford led the way for the Big Cats at Essex Sports Arena on Sunday with a massive 34 point, 15 rebound double-double as Leopards crushed Team Newcastle 102-74.
Luke Mascall-Wright added 16 points and four assists, while Chuck Duru came off the bench to finish with 11 points and five rebounds. Findley Wood chipped in with nine points, with Lee Hodges, Sam Newman and Rory Winter adding eight points apiece.
Thomas Baker’s team were deadly from three-point territory, downing 17 of their 39 attempts, and also out-rebounding the visitors 46-29.
Newcastle started well, but an 11-0 run sparked by Hodges gave Leopards a lead they would never lose, and Sandiford took his first period tally to ten points to send his side into the first break with a 24-16 lead.
That lead ballooned to 14 as Mascall-Wright hit a pair of triples to open the second period and Sandiford also scored twice from the Land of Plenty before Andre Lavinier marked his introduction to the game with a three within a second of getting on court and quickly doubled his tally to give Leopards a 54-34 lead.
With Wood (2), Sandiford and captain Newman all draining from downtown, the third period saw Leopards steadily increase their lead as they went into the final 78-53 ahead.
Dion Easton’s basket with 100 seconds remaining saw the lead reach 100-65, and only a late 9-0 run saw Newcastle manage a measure of damage limitation as Leopards moved up to 11th in the table.
Ben Seipt led the visitors with 20 points and eight rebounds, Onekachi Nzerem finished with 14 points and six boards.