Basketball: Jets take full advantage of Eagles' injury trouble to close on Sharks

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The Independent Online

Chester Jets closed the gap to four points on the leaders Sheffield Sharks with a 103-92 BBL Championship win at the Telewest Arena last night, taking advantage of Newcastle Eagles' extensive injury problems. The Eagles were without Shawn Myers, who has a broken finger on one hand and a dislocated digit on the other, and Jeremy Hyatt, a hamstring injury victim.

Infuratingly for the Eagles player-coach Fab Flournoy, Hyatt suffered his injury colliding with a team-mate, Charles Smith, in the final minute of their defeat by Milton Keynes Lions a week ago. Smith suffered a leg injury in the collision and hobbled through last night's encounter.

Newcastle tried to compensate for their lack of inside power by launching a fusillade of three-pointers, but most missed and it was two three-pointers from Jets' Ryan Huntley which gave the visitors a 20-10 lead. Jets closed the half with an 8-3 run to lead 48-42 and maintained a single-figure lead throughout the third quarter.

TJ Walker (22 points) and Mo Robinson (21 points) carried the bulk of Eagles scoring, supported by 17 points from the Englishman Andrew Bridge .

Newcastle cut Jets' lead to 83-82 before Michael Nurse opened a seven-point lead with two "threes" and a long-range shot from Walker brought Eagles to 89-85, but no closer.