15 April 2014

KENYA : Lions fail to sparkle in League opener

  • Strathmore Mugambi Mawira and Fred Odhiambo sandwich Menonites Evans Grado during their premier league match.(Photo by Shutterspeed)
Four times champion Lions had a poor outing in the national classic league, falling to University of Nairobi’s Terrorist and Ulinzi Warriors in its opening fixtures over the weekend.
Lions, missing out of action in the opening weekend of the new season, lost 45-53 to Terror on Saturday before succumbing to a 57-81 loss at the hands of Ulinzi the following day.
The last season’s semifinalists trailed 24-31 at halftime against the students who won 15-9 and 16-15 in the opening quarters.
A weakened 9-6 win in the third quarter did little to salvage the situation for Lions as Terror won the fourth 16-12.
Moses Wanjara and Sila Awour top scored for Lions and Terror respectively with 14 points apiece.
The match was largely expected to be easy-going for Lions considering they were facing a team that played in the relegation zone last season. The students rose to the occasion denting Lions’ hopes of launching their campaign on a winning start.
In their second match, Lions was no match for the soldiers falling to a 25-42 score line going to the breather. Ulinzi won all the quarters 12-5, 30-20, 20-17 and 19-15. Victor Ochieng had a game high 32 points for Lions while William Ochieng scored 16 points for Ulinzi.
Strath edge KPA 
Kenyatta University Pirates began their life in the league with a 41-53 loss to Nairobi Aviation College.
Job Byron scored 17 points and Franklin Delano added 10 to steer Aviation to victory after leading 23-20 at the breather. Collins Wekesa top scored for Pirates with 16 points.
Aviation did not have luck in their second match of the weekend falling by a half basket to Equity Bank who won 55-54. Delano top scored for Aviation with 16 points and Brian Obimbo for Equity scoring 15 points.
Strathmore University won the honors in their high scoring clash with Kenya Ports Authority, KPA, registering 98-96 on Saturday. The students set the pace for victory with a 38-34 lead at the breather.
Strathmore won the first quarter 23-11 and KPA the second 23-15. The students ruled in the second half with 29-27 and 17-12 wins to wrap up the slim win.
Emanuel Soja led the scores for Strathmore with 19 points while Ariel Okal had 25 for the Dockers.
KPA managed to bounce back in their second tie on Sunday beating Thunder 76-64 with 26 points from Okal. Griffin Ligare scored high for Thunder with 20 points.
KPA ladies team returned home with four points winning their two assignments in the city. On Saturday, they dispatched hosts Strathmore University 54-43 helped by Yvonne Akinyi’s 14 points. Melissa Akinyi scored the highest for Strathmore with 14 points.
A day later, the Coastal side dominated and outclassed Kenyatta University Oryx 88-24. KPA scored double digits in all quarters while Oryx scored doubles in only one quarter.
With former Eagle Wings point guard Natalie Akinyi scoring 17 points, KPA won all quarters 20-8, 16-4, 12-10 and 28-2 respectively. Rachael Wandagu had 10 points for Oryx.
New boys Dankid Academy continued with their roll in division one after beating Little Prince 60-50 on Saturday.
Other winners in the league were Kenya College of Accountancy- University, KCA-U, Umoja, Trailblazers and World Hope.
Weekend Results: Saturday- KU Pirates 41 Nairobi Aviation College 53, Strathmore University 68 Mennonite 36, Lions 45 Terror 53, Strathmore University 43 KPA Ladies 54, Strathmore University 98 KPA Men 96, Parklands Baptist 58 KCA-U 62, Dankid Academy 60 Little Prince 50, Zetech College 55 Umoja 56, Barclays Bank 45 Trailblazers 49, World Hope 57 Baraka X-Treme 55; Sunday- KAA 76 Blazers 57, Equity Bank 55 Nairobi Aviation College 54, KU Oryx 24 KPA 88, Thunder 64 KPA 76, Lions 57 Ulinzi 81.

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