Cheshire Phoenix moved up to fourth in the BBL after they secured their fifth and sixth wins of the league season at the weekend.

John Coffino's men continued to show improvement and their development as a team since the start of the season with a win at Bristol Flyers on Sunday and a gutsy triumph over visiting Plymouth Raiders at the Northgate Arena on Sunday night.

The Nix had to do it the hard way on Saturday night and needed a huge second-half turnaround to claim an 86-73 success, with Taylor King the high-point man for the visitors with 27 points.

At the WISE Basketball Arena, the Nix were slow out of the blocks in the first two quarters, with the Flyers leading the contest and heading into the locker room at the half-time break with a 12-point advantage at 47-35.

The Flyers came out of the locker room at the beginning of the third quarter in bullish mood and extended their advantage to 55-38 and looked to be in complete control with three minutes gone.

But nothing is a given in basketball and the home side suffered an almighty collapse as the Nix found renewed strength and vigour to put together a superb 24-6 stretch with some sharp shooting from King and Mike Di Nunno, while Demond Watt owned the glass at the other end.

 

The Nix headed into the final quarter with a one point advantage at 62-61 and, having overturned a 17-point deficit in a matter of minutes, the Nix capped a fine comeback to ease themselves to a comfortable success that had looked highly unlikely at the beginning of the third quarter.

King had a double-double of 27 points and 12 rebounds for Cheshire while Di Nunno posted 21 points and Watt 19 points, 10 boards and six steals.

Former London Lions forward Joel Barkers made his debut from the bench after the 6ft 6ins ace joined Coffino's men the previous day. Barkers had been plying his trade most recently in the NBA Summer League on behalf of the Denver Nuggets and holds a British passport.

On Sunday, another bumper crowd at the Northgate Arena witnessed the Nix put in a gritty display to register a 104-98 success over Jay Marriott's Plymouth Raiders.

The Nix led for much of the contest, with King's big dunk on the buzzer at the end of the second quarter sending them into the locker room with a five-point advantage at 51-46.

Raiders refused to lie down in the third with Pierre Hampton and Nick George impressing for the visitors, who took the lead at 96-95 with 2:14 remaining on the clock, leaving Nix fans hanging on their nerves as the game closed out.

But the Nix responded in the right fashion with Di Nunno coming up with back-to-back steals to swing the contest once again in the home side's favour and seal an important triumph.

Di Nunno finished with 25 points, Watt 21 points and the impressive Julius Hodge, in his most accomplished performance for the Nix to date, draining 20 points and contributing nine assists, as well as shooting 83% from the field.