This regular GB Men's preview looks ahead towards this weekend's action in the NCAA, the UK and in Europe.
GB's Ovie Soko looking to hit the 1000-point mark in NCAA
6'8 forward Ovie Soko continues to notch up the points for Duquesne. The former GB Under-20, who was named to the GB senior men's preliminary squad in 2012, is currently averaging 18.4 points per game for the Pittsburgh-based college. Wednesday night's game at Richmond saw him put up a game-high 21 points, the sixth successive game in which he's scored more than 10 points.
Soko, born in London, was one rebound away from a double-double with nine in all. Soko and Duquesne are a lowly 2-8 in the Atlantic-10 conference and travel to similarly ranked Rhode Island tomorrow, with both sides looking to end four-game losing streaks. Soko enters the game with 987 career points (565 at University of Alabama and 423 at Duquesne) and will be hoping for at least 13 points to hit the 1000-point career high.
Also on Saturday, England U18 captain Luke Nelson is in action for the University of California - Irvine. The shooting guard has been named Big West Conference Player Of The Week and will be eager to show why when UC Riverside come to Orange County. Nelson is averaging 12.5 points per game and is contributing defensively, as he did in the win over UC Davis on Saturday February 8th (61-59). The freshman defended against UC Davis top scorer Corey Hawkins ensuring UC Irvine held out for the win.
In the BBL, Nick Lewis, a veteran of last summer GB's Under-20 team continues to impress. Lewis, who averaged 12.3 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, helped GB to a first promotion to Division A of the European Youth Championship and the 6'3 guard has shown some of that form this week. On Saturday February 7th, Lewis scored 16 points while adding six rebounds for Sheffield Sharks in their defeat to Newcastle Eagles (59-69). Lewis looks likely to start against Durham Wildcats on Sunday, when the third-placed Sharks hope to reduce the deficit on the second-placed Eagles.
There is a doubleheader weekend in store for Great Britain's two internationals at Glasgow Rocks. Alex Marcotullio and Gareth Murray head to the BBL leaders Worcester Wolves tonight, then continue further South West to Plymouth for a Saturday night meeting which could well feature Plymouth's former GB U20 player, Louis Sayers. Murray played all forty minutes of the Rocks' defeat to Newcastle (66-74) on Sunday February 9th, while contributing 10 points and four rebounds.
Experienced GB international Pops Mensah-Bonsu continues to score highly in the Turkish league for Galatasaray. The 6'9 power forward averaged 10.8 points per game and was up to his average in last Sunday's Istanbul derby with Besiktas, scoring 10 points in addition to three rebounds. Galatasaray take on CSKA Moscow tonight in the EuroLeague, with Mensah-Bonsu likely to figure. The Londoner could also feature on Sunday when they face bottom club Aliaga in the league.
It could be a pivotal weekend for Giessen 46ers and GB's Myles Hesson in the German ProA league. Hesson, who scored 11 points and won five rebounds in the 72-94 defeat at Essen on Saturday February 8th, should be part of the team who host third-from-bottom Cuxhaven tonight while second-placed Crailsheim come to Giessen on Sunday.
Andrew Lawrence hopes to help Croatian side Zadar off the bottom of the Adriatic League table this weekend. The Great Britain international guard, who featured in the 2013 EuroBasket Finals, will possibly be looking forward to facing Bosnians Igokea again as he scored 26 points on November 9th when the two sides met previously.
Cremona can continue their recent run of good form with the help of GB guard Kyle Johnson, with victory over Sassari in Serie A on Sunday. Three wins out of their last five games have helped Cremona climb to third from bottom, with Johnson contributing off the bench since joining the team in December. Elsewhere, 6'1 GB point guard Justin Robinson will be hoping that his Hungarian club Falco KC can return to winning ways with victory on Saturday at NYKK.