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Last Updated: Saturday, 3 April, 2004, 21:06 GMT 22:06 UK
Bears clinch BBL title
Brighton Bears 106-57 Leicester Riders

Brighton secured the BBL Championship title with a resounding 106-57 victory over Leicester at the Brighton Centre.

The Bears made sure their victory was never in doubt as they surged to a 12-0 lead in the opening four minutes and never relinquished the comfort margin.

And their nearest rivals Sheffield Sharks slipped to a 88-74 defeat by Chester Jets which made them unable to catch Brighton at the top of the table.

The Bears were presented with the trophy after the game.

"It's huge for the organisation and what we're trying to accomplish," said Brighton head coach Nick Nurse.

"This team have played so well this year that to not come away with the title would not have been right.

"I think we deserved it, certainly our players did and I'm proud of them. The fans really enjoyed it and it was a lot of fun to see them so happy and celebrate with them - there's nothing quite like it!"

It is the second time time in their history the Bears have claimed the title, having also beaten Leicester to claim the title in1992/93.

Sheffield 74-88 Chester

Sheffield's hopes of winning the title ended with defeat s at the Ponds Forge International Sports Centre.

The game was very tight throughout the first half but the Jets outscored their hosts 21-10 in a spell at the end of the third quarter and start of the fourth to build up a 73-63 advantage.

After that the home side could never trim the gap to less than nine points.

Michael Nurse top scored with 24 points, whilst Justin Phoenix's 16 was the Shark's best effort.

London Towers 108-98 Thames Valley

London Towers moved a step closer to claiming a home play-off berth with victory over Thames Valley Tigers.

Quintin Bailey's superb shooting helped the Tigers lead 23-12 after a 15-2 run but the Towers replied with a 17-2 tear of their own.

The game stayed tight until threes from Omar Sneed and Rod Brown helped Towers to eight consecutive points late on.

Bailey scored 44 points to join Jeremy Hyatt's with the top individual points tally of the season.



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