10 December 2012

KENYA : Coop slay Lions to qualify for Basketball finals

Michezoafrika file picture
Michezoafrika file picture

Updated on 09/12/12 | By BRIAN AYIEKO

Kenya Basketball Federation Premier League defending champions Co-op Bank were in a class of their own on Sunday afternoon when they managed to beat fellow bankers and arch rivals KCB Lions 74-58 to earn a well deserved spot in the finals of the play-offs. The two teams were meeting in game 3 after they were level 1-1 in the best of 3 series with KCB taking game one 67-59 last Sunday but Co-op Bank managed to bounce back with a 59-51 win to take game two.
Co-op Bank kicked off the third match with a resounding 20-8 win in the 1st quarter holding on to a tight defense that the Lions could not simply cut through. In the 2nd quarter the Lions had a strong come back with Tobias Onyango and Ancent Wafula who missed Saturday’s match pulling the strings in KCB’s attacks and they managed to take the quarter 21-15. This put the half time scores at 35-29 in favor of Co-op Bank.
In the 3rd quarter Co-op Bank clearly showed their intentions of retaining their title when they completely dominated their opponents with fast pace and sublime attack from Titus Musembi who at the end of the day had 9 points to his name, took the quarter at 24 points against the Lions’ 9 points.
Morris Shitsama’s KCB tried to rally a comeback once more in the last quarter and they succeeded with a 20-15 win over Co-op but the Champions had already sealed their fate and took the day. Ancent Wafula was the match top scorer with 24 points followed by Victor Ochieng’s 14 points. Brian Busu was Co-op’s top scorer with 13 points to his name.
This means Co-op will face it off against USIU Tigers in the finals of the play-offs after the students beat Mombasa based KPA 70-59 in their game 2 on Saturday at the KPA Gymnasium.
Speaking after the match Co-op Bank coach Carry Odhiambo was elated with the win and states that his side is going all the way to retain their title, "we had a good game. Our plan was not to allow them penetrate the D and this worked to our advantage. USIU is a good side with a lot of individual brilliance and we shall have to counter that and hopefully retain our title."
In another match played at the same venue USIU Flames beat Co-op Bank ladies team 52-48 to earn a spot in the ladies finals. Flame’s Hilda Indasi had an outstanding 26 points in the match followed by Cynthia Irakunda who had 9 points. Linda Alando gave the bankers 13 points while Carol Auma and Celia Asila each had 10 points.
The finals kick off from Wednesday.

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