27 November 2008
UGANDA : A1 Challenge, Falcons bounce back strongly in play-off finals
By Charles Mutebi
MTN-FUBA Final Playoffs
Falcons 82 Power 55
Riders 74 Angels 67
A1 51 Canons 44
(All games tied at 1-1)
IF Sadolin Power had thought they would stroll to the title after whitewashing the Mogas Falcons in Game 1 of the MTN-FUBA playoff finals, they were so wrong.
Tuesday night, a Henry Malinga inspired Falcons team won Game 2 by 27 points, a bigger margin of victory than Power’s in the opening game by two points.
Still, although the numbers imply the defending champions had an easy time of it at the Lugogo indoor stadium, their victory came after spending a great effort on suffocating Power’s attack in the first half.
The Falcons restricted Power to 13 points in the first quarter to their 18 and by the half had stretched their lead to 8 points at 38-30. With Power players constantly forcing unsuccessful drives to the hoop, the Falcons stretched their lead to 16 points in the third quarter at 60-44.
The fourth quarter was only used by the Falcons to add more icing on their cake as they levelled the best of five series 1-1.
And it was also a typical Malinga night –– claiming the top scorer’s crown with 25 points and picking up multiple rebounds on either side of the court.
Two other veterans including Malinga’s brother Eric and Sam Obol finished with double figures at 12 and 15 respectively. Isaac Lugudde, who is fast becoming a crucial figure for the defending champions, chipped in 14.
Joseph IKong was Power’s top scorer with 15 points while Isaac Afidra with 12 was the only other teammate to get double figures.
In the women’s final, A1 Challenge leveled the series against the Lady Canons after a superb display from Olivia Mulwana, who scored a game-high 14 points.
Game 3 is tomorrow.