Glasgow Rocks thrashed Worcester Wolves 100-84 to end 2010 in third place in the British Basketball League.

Making his first start in two months, American guard Brice Fantazia seized his opportunity to hit 22 points to inspire the hosts to a sixth straight BBL win as the Kelvin Hall outfit took advantage of the short-handed visitors, who fielded just six players.

Sterling Davis’ men shook off the absence of Mike Copeland – and three weeks of enforced inactivity to race 13-3 in front and although Worcester hit back to close the gap to a single point, Glasgow surged once more to build a 53-40 half-time lead.

With recent signing Mike Kingma hitting 10/11 from field-goal territory to add 21 and Moses Murabarak a perfect 6/6 from 3-point range, the Rocks survived a three-point barrage in the third quarter from the Wolves. A decisive 17-3 run opened up a 81-63 cushion at the outset of the fourth and although the impressive Scott Russell fouled out, Davis was able to hand a debut to Scottish youngster Jack Burgess with victory long since secured.

Aleksas Zimnickas hit a game-high 28 points for Worcester, who were without Justin Dobbins and Daniel Gilbert who – like Copeland – remain stranded across the Atlantic.

Toppert exits after leading Plymouth Raid

Plymouth Raiders moved into the playoff places as they ended 2010 in style with a 116-106 victory over the Guildford Heat.

Cody Toppert set the tone for a high-scoring encounter as he hit nine three-pointers on his way to 41 points to lead all scorers. However it is set to be the American guard’s last game for the club after it was revealed he has invoked an escape clause to join Italian club Forli on an initial one-week trial.

“It is a real shame to see him leave, but upon his request, I have agreed to let him transfer to Italy, as it has been an ambition of his and is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said Riders coach Gavin Love. “I couldn’t stand in the way of that.

“We have really begun to play great basketball as a team and this is obviously a blow, but I have started looking for a replacement and am involved in discussions with a number of players. Cody leaves with my blessing, and the door is always open to him if he wishes to return to Plymouth and the Raiders.”

The Raiders led 59-50 at half-time but both teams kept the scoring rate high in the third as the triples continued to pour in.

Anthony Martin and Toppert made two each in the opening four minutes of the third quarter, with the latter’s second getting the Heat back to 69-64. The teams exchanged blows throughout the quarter, until Martin and Janusauskas scored consecutively to get the Heat within striking distance at 80-76 inside the last minute of the period, only for Toppert to make his seventh three-pointer of the game with the last play of the quarter 83-78.

The teams were cagey at the start of the decisive period, as Martelle McLemore’s three-pointer narrowed the deficit to 90-88 after three and a half minutes. The Heat still had it at a one possession game at 95-92 going into the final five minutes before Toppert and Chez Marks sealed the game for the hosts in a 7-0 surge, with Toppert’s ninth triple making it 102-92 to effectively seal the tie.

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