16 April 2013

SEYCHELLES : Fight takes gloss off Rockers’/Hawks’ show

Seychelles’ basketball doesn’t need another relentless stream of bad publicity after the remarkable progress made by the players on the court, but there are still those who continue to shoot first and then ask why they’ve done it.
The Victoria Gymnasium looked like a battlefield on Saturday night as a fight broke out between PLS Hawks and MBU Rockers players and supporters at the end of their first division encounter and the fighting continued on the parking outside the gym as the Seychelles Basketball Federation had apparently not made any provision for police presence during and after the game.
When police officers arrived at the scene, the fight was over and some of those who had been fighting seemed to be making peace with each other. At least this was something good to see!!!
The ugly incident shouldn’t be news at all – it's something that happens across all sports and because female and male athletes’ energy drive are intense, it's bound to spill over occasionally and something must be done to prevent it from happening.

PLS Hawks 91 … MBU Rockers 83

It wasn’t a nice scene for local basketball, especially after an entertaining encounter between PLS Hawks and MBU Rockers – the second time the two teams met inside a week after the Hawks had luckily edged the Rockers 96-91 in the Curtain-raiser tournament final after trailing in double digits for long spells.
Again on Saturday, the Rockers looked like shooting down the Hawks for the first time in over a year as they carried the game to the defending champions, who somehow found the way out with a big fourth-quarter 24-12 performance for a 91-83 win thanks to their vast experience and Nigerian all-rounder Alao Solomon once again top-scoring with 28 points. Skipper Bernard Bristol and Jean-Paul Desaubin were the only other hawks in double figures with 12 and 11 points each.
The Rockers won the first and third quarters 25-22 and 29-23, while the Hawks also took the second on a 22-17 score.
While the Hawks should be congratulated for showing that they still have the ability to prey on their opponents and are looking forward to enjoy another good season after staying unbeaten last year when they made a clean sweep of all the titles – curtain-raiser, league and SBF Cup – the Rockers should also be commended for their persistence and team play as they got balanced scoring with five players finishing in double digits – playmaker and captain Nigel Sinon (27), centre Daniel Hoareau (15 before fouling out cheaply early in the fourth quarter), Pascal Bibi (14), Selwyn Tambo (11) and Brian Morel (11).
Without a coach on their bench to guide them on how to run down the clock especially when boasting double-digit leads and not to rush their shots in crunch time, and having the right players on the court when the game is on the line, the Rockers again proved that they have the qualities to trouble any of the so-called ‘big teams’.
But once again they had themselves to blame for the defeat as they shot themselves in the leg before this coming weekend’s encounter with Baya whom they beat 87-80 (77-77 normal time) in overtime in the Curtain-raiser semifinal.

Baya 66 … RC Dynamics 43
Centre Timmy Adam came off the bench to carry Baya’s scoring load with 24 points including a 3-pointer in a 66-43 win over RC Dynamics.
Fellow centre Alex Baron finished with 14 points, the same total as Steve Denis who like Adam started the game on the bench for Baya who won all four quarters – 11-6, 18-10, 17-16 and 20-11.
Veteran Emmanuel Jupiter top-scored for RC Dynamics with 14 points and he was helped in offence by Terrence Sirame with 12 points.

Beau Vallon Heat 89 … Drifters 68
After trailing by four points – 20-24 – Beau Vallon turned the heat on Drifters in the remaining three 10-minute periods (23-14, 29-18 and 17-12) to earn an 89-68 win on the back of a game-leading 34 points from centre Robert Léon who is enjoying a new lease of life after falling out with the Baya management last year and not playing for almost the whole year.
Jean-Paul ‘JP’ Camille, who like Léon and playmaker Giovanni Laval joined the Heat from Baya, drilled in three treys for nine of his 18 points, while Christopher ‘Toto’ Camille added 14 and Laval got 11.
Ervin Agathine got 23 points, while Arnaud Arrisol banked three shots from downtown and finished with 14 points for Anse Boileau-based Drifters.

Angels 63 … Premium Cobras 66
Amadou Sylla scored 19 of his team-leading 24 points in the second half as Premium Cobras overcame a 10-point (23-33) half-time deficit with a 43-30 second-period performance for a 66-63 win against Angels.
Dominique Françoise had the hot hands for Anse Boileau-based Angels with 27 points and Barry Dubignon added 19 but their efforts went in vain as their team, captained by Steve Antat, lost a close match.

Meanwhile, in the women’s league, HotShots got 17 points from Sheriffa Agathine and 12 from Samia Asba in a 57-40 victory against Juniors whose top scorers were Laura Françoise with 19 points and skipper Sarah Rose with 13.

In the men’s division two, AAP Brothers beat Anse Etoile 54-46 and Cascade Bullets earned a 54-44 win against Razors.

G. G.

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