14 December 2015

KENYA : KPA, USIU-A revive playoffs final hopes

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Basketball fans will have to wait for at least another day to know finalists of the men premier league playoffs final that begin on Wednesday.
On Sunday, Nairobi City Thunder and Ulinzi Warriors who were highly tipped to qualify for the final lost their games.
That handed a lifeline to United States International University- Africa (USIU-A) and Kenya Ports Authority (KPA).
Despite a stoppage of about two hours due to teh usual leaking roof at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium, KPA went on to beat Ulinzi 80-74 in game three and force game four to be played on Monday.
At the time of stoppage, KPA was leading 74-69 with 2:30 to play in fourth quarter. KPA started off with a 7-0 lead in first quarter and had the biggest lead of eight points at 13-5.
They went on to win the quarter 22-14. In second quarter, the dockers extended the lead to 11 points at 25-14.
Point guard Eric Mutoro then led Ulinzi’s comeback with 11 points from three three-pointers and a basket taking scores to 28-27 in favour of KPA.
The game tied 29-29 but KPA took the lead 32-29. Tiberius Menya fired a three-pointer to tie 32-32 then Ulinzi took the lead 34-32 and won the quarter 26-12 to lead 40-34 at halftime.
The soldiers continued dominance in third quarter and led by 11 points at 47-36 as KPA seemed to be falling out of contention.
KPA won the quarter 19-18. With 7:06 to play in fourth quarter, KPA took the lead 61-60 and never surrendered to the end winning the quarter 27-16.
Victor Bosire scored 16 straight points in first quarter to top score for KPA with 20 points and Evans Letting scored 20 as well including 12 free shots.
For Ulinzi, Mutoro top scored with 27 points including five three-pointers while Ancette Wafula added 23.
USIU overcome Thunder 
In the second semifinal, Thunder came into game four leading 2-1 but USIU-A held their nerves to tie the series with a 73-65 win.
They will now play in the winner-takes-it-all game five on Monday. It was not an easy win for USIU-A. Captain Kevin Kigotho scored six straight points to help the students take a 9-2 lead in first quarter.
Griffin Ligare replied for Thunder with eight straight points as the game tied 12-12. USIU-A then led 14-12 and went on to win the quarter 16-15.
Inside second quarter, the teams tied 18-18 then USIU-A led at 21-18 and Thunder at 27-25.
Thunder won the quarter 22-14 for a 37-30 halftime lead and went on the offensive in third quarter to lead by 13 points at 49-36.
Alvin Nyangweso scored eight points to lead a comeback for USIU-A, winning the quarter 20-14 and trailed by a point at 50-51 going to the homestretch.
Ligare played for seven minutes of fourth quarter with four fouls which limited his defensive play.
With 4:10 to play, the scores tied 59-59 then USIU-A led 61-59 before a 63-63 tie.
The students took the lead 65-63 and never looked back to win the quarter 22-14. Nyangweso scored 19 points for USIU-A, Derrick Juma had 15, Kigotho added 14 and Alex Ramazani had 13. Ligare scored a game high 34 points for Thunder.
KCA into Division one final  
Kenya College of Accountancy- University (KCA-U) booked their place in division one final with a 55-52 comeback win over Trailblazers in game four to take the series 3-1. Trailblazers took a 9-0 lead in first quarter to win 18-9 and the second 10-9 for 28-18 at the breather.
Lawrence Wandera scored 11 points in third quarter to help KCA-U win 25-12 and take a 43-40 lead. Fourth quarter was a 12-12 tie and Wandera top scored for KCA-U with 15 points. Alex Oguso scored 22 for Trailblazers and Ishmael Nyamache added 16.
Barclays Bank pushed Upper Hill to game four in the other semifinal clash after winning game three 67-65 in overtime.
Upper Hill was a pale shadow of the team that won the first two games and never led until the closing moments of fourth quarter when they tied 57-57 through a basket from Riak Machuol with 24 seconds remaining.
In overtime, they tied again 65-65 but Isaiah Ater handed Barclays the advantage after fouling Franklin Delano with the buzzer sounding. He scored two free shots that made all the difference.
The students trailed by 20 points at halftime with scores reading 33-13. At the onset of third quarter, they went for a 10-0 scoring run to cut the deficit to 43-23.
Riny Riny made two three-pointers to help Upper Hill win the quarter 22-8. In fourth quarter, Ater scored nine points including two three-point shots for a 21-15 win but lost 8-10 in extra time.
Delano scored 8/10 for Barclays in overtime to top score with 22 points. Ater hit four three-pointers for Upper Hill to top score with 17 points; Machuol added 12 while David Ouma and Riny scored 11 each.

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