16 November 2015

UGANDA : KIU Titans draw first blood against UCU | NBL Playoffs

Francis Sokoroza (2nd L) scored KIU's game wining 3 pointer Photo Credits: kiutitans.com Francis Sokoroza (2nd L) scored KIU's game wining 3 pointer
M: UCU Canons 63-64 KIU Titans (KIU lead series 1-0)
W: UCU Lady Canons 52-41 A1 Challenge (UCU lead series 1-0)
The five games spread semifinal series between university sides UCU Canons and KIU Titans promised to be interesting and a close affair.
Game 1 of the series was just that as KIU Titans edged UCU Canons 64-63 on Sunday night at YMCA to the disappointment of UCU’s Coach, Nick Natuhereza who described as their worst of the season performance wise.
There was not much to separate the sides and it was KIU that started strong to an 18-13 first quarter. The Canons responded with a 15-13 second and trailed 28-31 at the half.
The second half was a sea saw with neither side taking full control of the game until the final horn.
With the game tied at 61 with under a minute to play, Steven Wundi drove through KIU’s traffic for a go ahead lay-up.
KIU’s coach, Hamza Nyambogo was forced into calling a time out on return the ball was inbounded to Francis Sokoroza. The guard took a couple of dribbles to his left and asked Henry Malinga to set up a screen for him to lose his defender – Wundi.
With Wundi lost in Malinga’s screen, Sokoroza got a meter off to bank a big 3-pointer with 9 seconds to give KIU a 64-63 lead.
Natuhereza then called for a time-out and on return, Ivan Lumanyika’s mid-range jumper drew steel and Norman Blick picked the rebound and protected the ball as time ran out.
Sokoroza netted game high 18 points off the bench to lead KIU, Henry Malinga contributed 14 points and picked 11 rebounds. Chris Omanye and Blick scored 9 points apiece.
Innocent Odur the only Canon to log double figures had 11 points. Desmond Owili, Ivan Lumanyika and Jonathan Egau had 9 points each. Lumanyika hauled in 21 rebounds.
Natuhereza associated the loss to terrible free throw shooting, foul trouble and poor offense.
“We missed free throws, easy opportunities and had foul trouble down the stretch” he told Kawowo Sports. “When you hold a team to 63 points should be good enough to win but we shot 2-of-10 from the the 3 point line and 23-of-47 on the line”

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