BBL Trophy: First Round
Plymouth City Patriots 105 – 53 St Mirren Saints (21-12, 47-32, 86-38)
(Patriots: Bell/Simons, 16; Brandon, 15; Hawthorne Jr., 13 – Saints: Cleary, 18; Allahverdi/Carroll, 10; Harte, 9)
Plymouth City Patriots wowed fans at the Plymouth Pavilions, beating Scottish side St Mirren Saints 105-53 in the BBL Trophy opener on Saturday night.
Troy Simons launched the Patriots’ Trophy campaign in style with 16 points, eight rebounds, five assists, and five steals.
Despite the finish, St Mirren were a force to be reckoned with in the opening quarter as powerful big Chris Cleary got the first points on the scoreboard, and Chris Carroll followed with a thumping three.
In response, Plymouth City turned up the intensity, evidenced by their seven-point run, while St Mirren could not contain Simons, who cleaned up the defensive rebounds and scored at will at the other end of the court.
Saints’ Ali Allahverdi proved to be a one-person wrecking crew, making a handful of strong moves to the basket, finding himself and others open to knock down shots.
After a tiresome start to the opening quarter, the Patriots capitalised, going on a 14-0 spree to round up the opening period, emphasised by a confident dunk from rookie centre Sam Keita.
More of the Plymouth City Patriots rotation saw generous minutes as the game evolved into a runaway victory.
Patriots youngster and hopeful for the future Will White took the floor and immediately made an impact, drawing a foul from beyond the arc and putting away all three free throws awarded to him.
As the first half reached a close, Allahverdi and Cleary managed the bulk of the load for St Mirren, but James Hawthorne Jr. made it a habit of pulling offensive rebounds down, grabbing three in quick succession.
Plymouth’s 21-2 second-half frenzy pushed the game well away in their favour, while St Mirren fought hard to make a comeback despite being outnumbered.
Isa Brandon poured in back-to-back triples, while Markedric Bell was equally effective above the rim and beyond the arc.
Having outscored the Saints by 33 in the third period, the hosts sealed the win and advanced to the next round.
Six Patriots players scored double figures – an awe-inspiring feat.
St Mirren played valiantly to their credit, with Cleary coming away with 18 points and 10 rebounds in an impressive double-double display.
Catch all of the BBL Trophy games on the official BBL YouTube channel.