Tuesday night is the closest this year’s MTN-Fuba League playoffs have come to delivering overtime so far. The last part of DMark Power-Miracle Eagles was deservedly watched standing at YMCA Court.
The curtain fell with Power edging Miracle Eagles 65-63 to level the five-game series at 1-1. Miracle’s Colin Mukiza thought he had delivered five extra minutes only for a review by the match commissar to rule out his lay-up.
The buzzer had gone before Mukiza’s attempt as the champions held on. Mukiza (9) was only rescuing an air ball from Norman Blick, who struggled with his shot on the night. The ex-Power star sunk only two of 11 attempts from downtown.
The emotions swung endlessly. With 35 seconds to play, Miracle led 63-62. It wouldn’t have come to this. Steely defence and quickness compounded by poor execution from Miracle had given Power control with entertainment aplenty.
They won the first period 15-7 and grew a 16-point lead at the interval. When Miracle started the third quarter by committing four straight turnovers, there was every reason to leave. No one did.
“We made it hard for ourselves,” Power coach Bernice Ankunda said. Stephen Omony led the revival with a game-high 23 points and 13 rebounds.
Norman, the architect of the Game One 80-65 victory three days prior, was a near-villain. His 13 points came with nine turnovers. Ben Komakech dropped a team-high 14.
Power will look back at making only four of 14 from the foul line. This series looks destined for a decisive game five unlike the women’s one in which KCC took a 2-0 lead with a 60-38 crushing of KIU Rangers. Leopards now need one more victory to make the final