Kangaroos Mechelen cheers against Bergen after one extension and takes three out of five

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Kangaroos Mechelen triumphed on the seventh match day of the BNXT League and after one extra period versus Bergen. For the Maneblussers, who still have two make-up matches to go, immediately a 3 out of 5. For the vice-champion, the second loss of the season (5 out of 7). Okapi Aalst won the second match on Saturday-evening against Leuven Bears 68-57. For the Onions the third win in a row.

Patrick Ceulemans

Bergen missed Pasalic (ankle sprain and four weeks out), but Emmanuel Nzekwezi recovered. The Dutch center missed the European midweek match due to administrative matters. In a balanced first quarter, Kangaroos Mechelen countered an early break from Bergen (2-8). First Myles Stephens and then Jonas Foerts guided the Maneblussers to a 13-13 score after the first quarter. The start of the second slide was for the Hainauts. Igor Mintogo and Marcus Tyus quickly provided a 20-25 bonus. Kangaroos’ Nate Grimes didn’t give up. The American picked rebounds and scored important points. After a 7-0 intermediate sprint, the Maneblussers took the lead again: 27-20. Domien Loubry scored and sprinkled with assists and Jonas Foerts dropped no less than 4 out of 5 bombs in the first half. That made Kangaroos systematically further away after 30-26. The Mechelen also dominated the rebound (24-19) in the first half and squeezed after a 38-31 score and after an impressive blockshot by Nate Grimes on Emmanuel Nzekwezi it went to a 43-35 lead halfway for Kangaroos Mechelen.

Myles Stephen immediately dropped a bomb at the beginning of the second half (46-35), but Kangaroos Mechelen then fell silent. David Nichols, Adjin Penava and Emmanuel Nzekwesi made the connection after 46-40: 50-49.

X-factor Myles Stephens

Myles Stephes, however, was the x-factor at Kangaroos Mechelen. The American made block shots, defended tightly and scored. Together with a again frisky Domien Loubry, who unpacked important bombs, Kangaroos Mechelen took a 66-59 lead after three quarters.

The final quarter brought a lot of sloppy basketball and thus nervousness, including some questionable decisions by the trio of referees. Bergen had opportunities but only grabbed the momentum after 68-59 and 71-66 and so deep into the final quarter. Signed Marcus Tyus who made it 71-71 with two minutes and eleven seconds left on the clock. Zaccharie Mortant dropped a three-pointer and at 71-74 the 0-10 Hainaut intermediate sprint was a fact. Domien Loubry answered with a bomb (74-74) and in the pressing final phase, Bergen had possession ten seconds from the end. Bergen did not prepare anything so that an extension was a fact. Overtime brought a rollercoaster of emotions and three-pointers; Kangaroos Mechelen was in the lead: 77-74 and 79-78 with a dunk by Myles Stephens. David Nichols made the connection with a bomb: 81-81, but Wen Mukubu also dropped a three-pointer: 84-81. Nate Grimes retired from the Maneblussers with five errors. David Nichols made the connection again at 86-86. The referees came back on their decision ten seconds from the end and after a fight after a rebound phase gave the ball advantage to Kangaroos. Domien Loubry scored the winning basket for Kangaroos Mechelen at one and a half seconds from the end: 88-86

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