24 November 2006
SEYCHELES : PLS Hawks draw first blood against MBU Rockers
PLS HAWKS had three of their starters score in double digits in their 22-point Seychelles Basketball Federation (SBF) Cup game one semifinal win against MBU Rockers on Wednesday November 22 at Victoria Gymnasium.
Coach Tony Juliette’s PLS Hawks built their 74-52 victory in the second quarter which they won 21-9 after having been outscored 12-16 by MBU Rockers in the opening 10-minute spell.
Defending champions PLS Hawks, who won last year’s edition of the competition by sweeping Premium Cobras 2-0 (78-76 and 73-63) in the best-of-three final when being short-handed to achieve a second League and Cup double in four years, also won the third and fourth quarters 17-16 and 24-11 of Tuesday’s game.
Once again, Ugandan all-rounder Stephen Omony, who missed a number of league matches after being tied up in his home country trying to solve some personal matters, led PLS Hawks in scoring with a game-leading 17 points.
Veteran power forward Jim Domingue netted 13 points and centre Barry Baron added 12 to help PLS Hawks’ starters outscore those of MBU Rockers by two points – 44-42.
PLS Hawks’ bench also outscored that of MBU Rockers 32-10.
Roddy Fanchette and skipper Nigel Sinon got 13 points apiece for MBU Rockers and they are expected to once again guide their team in game two on Sunday to even the series and force a decisive game three.
Speaking to Sports Nation, MBU Rockers’ assistant coach Paul Denis said:
“We need a win to stay alive in the competition. To get the win, we have to step up in defence and remain concentrated on what we have to do. Losing game one has made us understand that we have to work harder. I believe that if my young team had won game one, they would have grown overconfident and it would have been a difficult situation against an experienced PLS Hawks team.”
Still without a cup to show for their efforts this year, PLS Hawks are aiming to win the SBF Cup to salvage their season and coach Juliette told Sports Nation that “the semifinal series against MBU Rockers will be over by Sunday.”
It is to note that playmaker Thomas Collie isn’t expected back in PLS Hawks’ line-up soon after having already missed two matches because of a finger injury.
Meanwhile, the first match of the other best-of-three semifinal is scheduled for tomorrow at 5.15 p.m. at Victoria Gymnasium when Premium Cobras will meet Baya.
So far this season, Men’s division 1A League champions Premium Cobras have lost three times to Baya in five meetings.
While Premium Cobras want to win the SBF Cup to complete a League and Cup double, Baya are aiming to add the second most important trophy in local basketball to the Men’s division 1A Top-of-the-table crown they won after beating the same Premium Cobras in the final.