23 September 2006
SEYCHELLES : Falcons back among elites
POINTE LARUE FALCONS are back in the men’s top flight and they have done it in just two seasons. Men division two winners in 2005, they have finished as Men division 1B champions this year.
It’s a good achievement considering the fact that the team disbanded in 2002 only for the players to regroup and register with the Seychelles Basketball Federation (SBF) and play in structured competitions in 2005.
After finishing the 2005 season unbeaten in the lowest league, Pointe Larue have 11 wins and one loss this year for 23 points.
Team manager Nichol Gabriel told Sports Nation that “2006 has been a fruitful and competitive season. We enjoyed it. Now that we have been promoted to Men division 1A, we’re going there to stay. We’re very serious about it.”
It must be noted that Falcons played in the country’s old first division from 1989 to 1995 before being relegated to the second division. After three years struggling in the second tier league, Falcons won promotion to the top flight in 1998 before making the drop again in 2002. That same year, the team disbanded and it was only with the return to Seychelles of manager Gabriel that the players decided to revive the team.
Ex-Champs will finish as runners-up following their 61-58 victory against third-placed Anse Etoile over the weekend.
In the Men division 1A, both Premium Cobras and PLS Hawks collected convincing wins and they did it in style.
With assistant coach Clifford Joubert in the stands and his name not even on the score-sheet, PLS Hawks overcame the absences of big men Barry Baron and Rodney Lozé (serving automatic suspension after being disqualified in the recent defeat to Baya) to beat Angels 106-74.
Ugandan Stephen Omony top-scored for coach Tony Juliette’s PLS Hawks with 27 points and Nigel Annette came off the bench to add 26, including four 3-pointers.
Clearly missing influential skipper Steven Servina who is pursuing his studies in China, Angels went to Daniel Dodin for scoring and he finished with a game-high 28 points.
SMB Razorbacks thought they could stop a two-game losing skid on Sunday as they reduced the deficit to three points mid-way through the fourth quarter against Premium Cobras, but when the leaders pressed a little harder on the accelerator, coach Pascal Fostel’s team just could not react. A 63-88 loss is the third consecutive for SMB Razorbacks and they need to become more focus to put an end to the losing sequence.
Premium Cobras got balanced scoring with four players in double digits. Danny Bertin connected on a season-high seven treys – four consecutive in the fourth quarter – for a team-high and game-leading 26 points. Nigerian power forward Reuben Kolawole added 24 and he joined Tanzanian Abdallah ‘Dulla’ Ramadhan (15 points) in the dunking show. Christopher Camille added 13 points.
For SMB Razorbacks, Nigel Cafrine scored 17 points and Jean-Paul Camille netted 14.
In the women’s League, there were easy wins for Anse Etoile Stars, Bel Air and Mont Fleuri.
Bel Air walked over Juniors and this coming Friday, they are to play Mont Fleuri who defeated bottom team Hackers 87-24.
Williana Dubois top-scored for Mont Fleuri, while S. Sophie contributed 14 points, more than half of Hackers’ total.
Anse Etoile Stars lost skipper Simone Malbrook with five fouls but this happened after they had already sewn up the game against inexperienced Cadettes, winning 86-15.
Dinah Louis got 29 points including four treys, Malbrook added 24 points and Lucia Souffe made a 14-point contribution to the win.
Kathleena Pouponneau scored eight points for Cadettes.
It is unfortunate that Sports Nation cannot bring its readers the positions of the teams in the other divisions as it did not receive the updated league tables by the time of going to press.