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WATCH: David Aliu on Cheshire Phoenix win over Durham Wildcats

Phoenix on fire as they overpower Durham at the Northgate Arena to claim 91-58 success

Tougher challenges lie ahead on court for Cheshire Phoenix this season but their emphatic 91-58 triumph over Durham Wildcats on Sunday night will have done no harm to their confidence heading in to the post season.

The Nix put visiting Durham to the sword with a devastating final quarter where they poured in 21 points and allowed just three, the lowest amount of points scored by a team in any quarter this BBL Championship season.

In truth, the Nix never looked like losing a contest they bossed from the start, with four players reaching double figures in points scored and they set the tone as they opened up the contest with back-to-back threes.

John Coffino's Cheshire side are now locked into fourth spot in the BBL and have two games left to prepare for their tilt at play-off glory and sterner examinations of their credentials will be had when they face a Friday trip to league champions-elect Newcastle Eagles before hosing in-form Sheffield Sharks, a possible play-off opponent, on Sunday (5.30pm).

"To describe this game I would say balanced," said Coffino. "Everybody contributed, the minutes were contributed well, the points were contributed well, we had 25 assists which means we were sharing the ball. It's good to have these habits late in the year.

"But we are not at the top of our game, we have a tough one on Friday going to Newcastle and that is going to be on our mind all week.

"They are a different team, they have some injuries and they might clinch (the title) against Manchester (Giants) on Wednesday but either way they are going to play their best and they don't ever want to lose a game and neither do we. We felt like we didn't give them our best last time we were there but we have refocused ourselves since to the two-game season."

Demond Watt, who received his fourth Molten BBL Player of the Month Award prior to the game, led the way in points scored for Cheshire as he hit 18 but the home side weren't overly reliant on their talisman and to a man, the Nix roster can be pleased with their performances.

Club captain David Aliu (17 point, 10 rebounds) was superb as he registered a double-double while Adrien Sturt grasped his opportunity of increased minutes as he also grabbed a double-double (12 points, 10 rebounds).

Taylor King hit 16 points and came up with seven assists and got the Wildcats in foul trouble while Paul Sturgess and Martyn Gayle both put in impressive shifts on the court.

Lee Davie's Wildcats side were paced by 12 points from Panos Mayindombe off the bench, but were simply overpowered inside as the hosts scored 46 of their points in the paint while the visitors connected on just 32% of their shots.

With two tough games coming up in the next seven days and the end-of-season play-offs on the horizon, Coffino says that the team are in a good place heading into the business end of the campaign, highlighting the strength of their bench.

"Our guys are in good spirits and there is good harmony in the locker room," added Coffino.

"We are not going to go anywhere without a bench. We cannot play the likes of Demond Watt, Taylor King and David Aliu for 38-39 minutes a game. We need the Martyn Gayles', the Paul Sturgess', the Simeon Naydenov's and the Adrien Sturt's to contribute, and not just to give them a breather but to contribute and they did that today and I'm really, really pleased with that.

"(The next two games) These are play-off type games and hopefully we can continue this confidence and go to Newcastle and believe we can beat them."

Cheshire Phoenix scorers: Watt (18pts), Aliu (17pts), King (16pts), Sturt (12pts), Gayle (11pts), Salisbery (9pts), Sturgess (6pts), Naydenov (2pts)


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