Photo: Stav Gertz

Postgame Report: Maccabi Hunter Haifa 70, Maccabi Ashdod 77

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Maccabi eliminated from the State Cup Tournament

Maccabi Hunter Haifa hopes of advancing in the State Cup were dashed after falling to Maccabi Ashdod, 77-70, at Romema on Sunday night.  Zach Graham made his debut for the Greens, scoring 14 points on 4-of-7 from three-point range in the loss.  Reggie Buckner tallied 17 points and 9 rebounds, and Angel Rodriguez added 16 points and 4 assists.

Brad Greenberg’s Ashdod team was paced by Cameron Long who recorded a game-high 21 points, followed by Zek Henry who added 15 points.

Ashdod started off well from the get-go, grabbing an early 11-3 run, and finished with a 17-8 lead at the end of the first frame.  Graham netted two quick 3-pointers in the beginning of the second quarter as Maccabi ensued on a 14-0 run.  Former Haifa center Alex Chubrevich tied the game at the free throw line, and a 3-pointer by Ashdod gave the visitors a 31-28 lead at halftime.

Maccabi’s Willy Workman got into foul trouble in the third quarter, limiting his minutes.  Guni Israeli scored two as Haifa took a 53-50 lead at the end of the third frame. The contest remained tight, but Ashdod managed to build an 8 point advantage in the final period.  Maccabi didn’t give in with buckets from Graham and Buckner keeping them in the game.  But, poor decision making on offense and a lack of aggressiveness on defense, eventually allowed Ashdod to seal a 77-70 victory over the Greens — eliminating Maccabi from the state cup for the second straight season.

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Offer Rahimi: “We made too many mistakes and we were soft on too many possessions on defense, so I am very disappointed with the results of the game. We will have to work hard the next two weeks — basketball and mentally. We have a new player that we need to get into the rhythm, since he is not in the flow yet.”