River Lions take down Honey Badgers to lock up 2nd place, solidify CEBL playoff picture
Shooting Stars defeat Growlers to grab bye to quarter-finals along with Niagara
The Niagara River Lions avenged their Friday loss to the top-seeded Hamilton Honey Badgers with an 83-79 victory on Sunday afternoon, locking the 2022 Canadian Elite Basketball League playoff picture into place.
Niagara will host the lower-seeded winner of Thursday's play-in games, which will feature the fourth place Fraser Valley Bandits against the seventh place Guelph Nighthawks at 7:30 p.m. PT, and the fifth place Saskatchewan Rattlers taking on the sixth place Edmonton Stingers at 8:00 p.m. ET.
The Honey Badgers (14-6) will get 11 days off, drawing back into action in the semifinals against host Ottawa BlackJacks on August 12 to kick off the CEBL Championship Weekend.
All games will be streamed live on CBCSports.ca, CBC Gem and the free CBC Sports app.
IT IS SET 🔥.<br>8️⃣ Teams.<br>7️⃣ Single Elimination Games.<br>1️⃣ CEBL Champion.🏆<br><br>Who will it be?<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CEBLPlayoffs?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CEBLPlayoffs</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LetsBall?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LetsBall</a> <a href="https://t.co/W97Wm9EliS">pic.twitter.com/W97Wm9EliS</a>—@CEBLeague
The CEBL's scoring-leader Khalil Ahmad capped a tremendous campaign for the River Lions, finishing the game with 21 points, nine rebounds, seven assists and five steals.
Hamilton, who entered the day locked into a first place finish, kept all players under 30 minutes of game time.
Guard Christian Vital led the Honey Badgers in all five major statistical categories with 20 points, eight rebounds, four assists, four steals and two blocks.
You can feel the excitement through the screen<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LetsBall?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LetsBall</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/HHBvsNRL?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#HHBvsNRL</a> <a href="https://t.co/HvFOLJBhYs">pic.twitter.com/HvFOLJBhYs</a>—@CEBLeague
Shooting Stars top Growlers, secure quarter-final spot
The Scarborough Shooting Stars finished their first-ever season strong with a 95-88 win over the Newfoundland Growlers on Sunday.
By virtue of the River Lions victory, the Shooting Stars will take on the higher-seeded winner of Thursday's play-in matches.
Scarborough was powered to victory by forward Teddy Allen, who finished with 22 points on 10-of-16 shooting, including a dramatic finish to reach the target score of 95.
Teddy Allen with the tough finish to take the W for the Shooting Stars 💫<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LetsBall?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LetsBall</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NFGvsSSS?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NFGvsSSS</a> <a href="https://t.co/8sJc3MW7Bx">pic.twitter.com/8sJc3MW7Bx</a>—@CEBLeague
The Growlers (6-14) dropped their final two games of their inaugural season, but showed resiliency in the second half of the year, posting a 6-4 record after dropping their first 10 games of the year.
Centre Nysier Brooks led the way for Newfoundland, finishing with 18 points on a stellar 80 per cent shooting, while guard Shaquille Keith finished with 20 points.
The 2022 CEBL regular season will come to an end on Monday when the BlackJacks host the Montreal Alliance at 7:30 p.m. ET.
WATCH l CEBL: Niagara River Lions vs Hamilton Honey Badgers:
WATCH l CEBL: Scarborough Shooting Stars vs Newfoundland Growlers: