By Johnny Askounis/ email@example.com
Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv was crowned champion in Israel for the fourth straight year after defeating Hapoel Gilboa Galil, 73-67, and winning the Winner League Playoffs Finals best-of-three series 2-1.
Scottie Wilbekin led the charge scoring 16 of his side’s 42 points in the first half. The explosive guard cooled off after the break at the packed Menora Mivtachim Arena but with three late free throws sealed a game-high 19 points and the W.
A 22-point lead narrowly stayed in double-digits entering the fourth quarter of Game 3 and was shrunk to three points down the stretch. The hosts held on as Othello Hunter and Chris Jones paired for all the points of title-clinching 7-0 run.
Jones finished with 10 points, while Hunter had six points and five rebounds. Angelo Caloiaro chipped in ten more points. On the losing end, Amit Gershon hit a team-high 14 points.
The team coached by Giannis Sfairopoulos clinched the 55th domestic league championship in team history. The Greek head coach himself landed his third Israeli title to go along with his two previous domestic championships with Olympiacos in 2015 and 2016.
Maccabi extended its dominating display in Israel after capturing both the Israeli Cup in May and the League Cup in December. It was the first perfect season since 2014.
Photo Credit: Winner League