28 May 2007

InterCITIES 2007 : Nairobi Teams Successfully Defend Inter-Cities Titles

Nairobi City Basketball Teams successfully defended their East Africa Inter-Cities Basketball Titles on Sunday after edging out their tough opponents at the Nyayo National gymnasium in Nairobi .

Nairobi City Team (Kenya) 86 vs. Kampala City Team (Uganda) 67

The Nairobi City Ladies team, led by national team players; Caroline “Majeng” Achieng, Eunice Ouma, Millicent Awuor, Hilda Luvandwa, Samba Mjomba and Angela Okoth, overcame a hard-fighting Kampala City Council side to register 86-67 win. The game tipped off to an explosive start, with the teams trading baskets at will, tying at 5-5, 8-8, and 12-12 before Joyce Makhungu made it 20-19 at the end of the first quarter. Nairobi team, backed by the home fans, came all fired up in the second quarter, with Luvandwa, Luchivya Angela and Mjomba Samba leading the onslaught as they extended the lead to 37-24 with 4 minute to the half. A never-say-die Kampala side replied through Agatha Bildawa and Becky Akullo who combined well to put the scores at 31-41 in Nairobi 's favour at the break. On resumption, Kampala dominated the game at all fronts and ends, with Nakiwu, Akullo and Bildawa leading the pack as they recovered to within a point (44-45) with 4:41 to go, before eventually taking over to lead 55-52 at the end of the quarter. The Kampala side maintained their offensive plays early in the final quarter, extending their lead to 57-52, prompting Nairobi city Coach: Thomas “Smatts” Olumbo to take a time-out. On resumption, the Nairobi side looked more alive and relaxed, as they ambushed Kampala City for a “Hostile-Takeover”, led by Luvandwa, Eunice Ouma, Joyce Makhungu and Caroline Majeng, to lead 70-59 with 3 minutes remaining. Both teams then traded baskets at both ends, with Flavia Oketcho leading the Kampala side, while Lulu and Majeng maintaining the Nairobi side's form. Emma Nyakweba sealed the victory for Nairobi after she sunk a 3-pointer with 17 seconds remaining for a 86-67 scoreline.

Caroline “Majeng” Achieng shot 24 points for Nairobi city, with Hilda Luvandwa adding 13 and Joyce Makhungu 13 points, while Becky Akullo led Kampala city with 17 points. Nairobi 's Caroline Achieng and Kampala Agatha Bildawa were named the Most Valuable Players.

Nairobi City Team (Kenya) 84 vs. Dar es Salaam City Team (Tanzania) 77

The Nairobi City men's team had to work-extra-Hard throughout the game before they registered a 84-77 win over Dar es Salaam City Team. Dar es Salaam were the first to draw blood, going up 4-0 early in the game after quick baskets by Gilbert Gatumbi and George Tarimo. Nairobi team settled down and recovered through Victor Odendo and Ancette Wafula to tie the game at 4-4, before combining again, this time with Dan Okwiri to lead 16-10, with 2 minutes to go, before Yoni Wanambiro made it 22-16 at the end of the quarter. Dar es Salaam came into the second quarter a rejuvenated side, pushing the home team to the limit, outscoring them 23-18 for a 40-39 scoreline at the break in Nairobi 's favour.

The third quarter was balanced, with both teams trading baskets at both ends, scoring 16 points a piece. Wafula sunk two back-to-back 3-pointers with Okwiri adding superb plays for Nairobi Team, while Dar replied through Gilbert Gatumbi and Jacob Marenga for a 56-55 score line at the end of the quarter after a late 3-pointer from Nairobi's Ben Oluoch. The final quarter saw Nairobi city Team come out a determined side, with Horace okumu, Ancette Wafula and Yoni Wanambiro putting up a combined effort to open a comfortable 80-69 lead, before Griffin Ligare made it 10-points lead (81-71) with 1:16 remaining on the clock. Wafula bagged 29 points for Nairobi , as Gilbert Gatumbi and George Tarimo replying for Dar es Salaam with 16 points each. Nairobi 's Yoni Wanambiro was named the Most Valuable Player-MVP

Info: alsaBasketball.com

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