Buzzing Cheshire Phoenix will attempt to put one foot in the BBL Cup final on Sunday when they host London Lions in a big last-four first-leg clash (5.30pm tip-off).
But first up for the Nix is the second part of their BBL Championship double-header against Leeds Force tonight (Friday, 7.30pm tip-off).
Cheshire head to the Carnegie Sports Arena on the back of a thrilling 100-94 home victory over Leeds at the weekend.
And coach Ben Thomas has insisted it is vitally important that the Nix repeat that result going into the first of two huge showdowns against the Lions.
Thomas said: “We just have to take it game by game. If we overlook the Leeds game, and just focus on Sunday against London, then a tough game will become even tougher.
“We have to use Leeds on Friday as preparation for Sunday. If we perform well and get the win, then we’re only going to benefit.
“If we overlook it, we will struggle on Friday, and in turn we will struggle on Sunday, too.
“So that’s why I say we have to take it game by game. We’ve talked about this being an important period for the club and, in important periods, you want to get some form.
“We’ve got some by winning at the weekend and now we just have to take that into the next two or three big games before Christmas.”
Cheshire trailed by 16 points going into the final seven minutes of last Sunday’s encounter with Leeds. But, roared on by a partisan crowd, they staged an incredible late comeback.
And Thomas has called on the Nix faithful to deliver a similar level of backing in this Sunday’s semi-final first leg with the Lions.
He said: “The crowd were unbelievable, especially in te fourth quarter. They add something you can’t train for.
“The crowd give you that energy, I know our players feed off it and absolutely love it, and we’re definitely going to need that again on Sunday because it’s going to be a very hard game.”
Thomas also hailed his players for the character they showed against Leeds.
“We never said die, we stuck with it and, with the crowd really getting behind us, everything clicked,” said Thomas.
“The team chemistry that we talk about a lot, and having a group of guys who want to work hard for each other, all those little things came together.
“We started playing team basketball at both ends of the court and it was a massive result for us.”
Malcolm Riley and CJ Gettys were named in the BBL All-Star Five as reward for their performances in the win.
Riley finished with 26 points, nine rebounds, two assists and two steals while Gettys grabbed 20 points and 10 rebounds.
Meanwhile, Andrew Bachman has left Cheshire in order to join up with a team in France.
Bachman joined the Nix in the summer from Worcester Wolves.