Fab Flournoy has been rewarded with the BBL coach of the month award for March after leading Newcastle Eagles to a perfect seven wins from seven games during the period.
The flawless run by the Eagles has seen the player-coach take his team to the brink of the BBL Championship title and they are now potentially three wins away from finishing top of the pile.
They opened up their March campaign with a comfortable 94-74 home court success against Plymouth Raiders – thanks largely to 18 points each from Darius Defoe and Paul Gause.
The Eagles then faced successive games against defending BBL champions, and big rivals, Leicester Riders.
It was Flournoy and co who emerged victorious – although it could not have been any closer, after they secured back-to-back wins by a single point. First they claimed an 84-83 win on the road at the John Sandford Centre, surviving a late rally by the home side to hold out for the win. They then triumphed 97-96 in front of the Eagles faithful inside Sport Central, who were treated to an overtime classic as Malik Cooke delivered a 28-point MVP performance.
After a decidedly more comfortable 95-67 win on their own floor against London Lions, Flournoy then masterminded three away wins in a row to finish the month perfect.
Although it was far from straightforward against a trio of play-off chasers, who all pushed the Eagles hard and forced them into once again demonstrating their ability to grind out tight wins.
The Eagles produced a fine shooting display to get past old foes Glasgow Rocks 89-84 at the Emirates Arena and that took them to within touching distance of getting through March unbeaten.
Last weekend saw them pitted against a resurgent Manchester Giants and they had to dodge a last second bullet to take a precious 83-82 win, with Cooke once again very much the star of the show. Finally, concluding their most productive period of the entire season to date, they fought off some stiff resistance against North East rivals, Durham Wildcats, to prevail 99-95.
Flournoy bagged the award this month, seeing off Worcester Wolves’ head coach Paul James, who won the accolade last month. James and his Wolves picked up four wins from five games during March.
And they memorably sealed an historical BBL Trophy final win against Glasgow Rocks in front of more than 5,000 fans at the Emirates Arena.