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July 15, 2020

Lewis to lead SIGA Task Force

Brian Lewis, president of the T&T Olympic Committee (TTOC), will chair a new task force…
July 13, 2020

Bach says cancelling Tokyo 2020 would have been easier option for IOC

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach has said it would have been easier to…
July 13, 2020

Lewis wants Olympic medallists to receive Olympic Order

THE LIFETIME ban imposed on former American Olympic track and field medallists Vince Matthews and…
July 12, 2020

Athletes Are Fighting the Olympic Ban on Protests

At a time of global uprisings, the Olympic ban on political dissent is under renewed…
July 12, 2020

CANOC urging sports associations in the Caribbean to be innovative

BRIAN Lewis, president of the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees (CANOC), believes that sport…
July 11, 2020

First black Miss Universe became a national icon in Trinidad

When Janelle “Penny” Commissiong became Miss Universe in 1977, the world sat up and took…
July 10, 2020

SIGA CREATES TASK FORCE ON RACE, GENDER, DIVERSITY, AND INCLUSION

Following the successful SIGA-Soccerex Webinar on the topic, “Football For All,” the Sport Integrity Global…

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Tuesday, 14 July 2020 03:07
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UPCOMING OLYMPIC GAMES

T&T OLYMPIC TEAM TTO PARTNERS

Chevy Lon­don emerged as Strak­er Nets’ se­cret weapon in help­ing them win game one of the Men’s Pre­mier Di­vi­sion Best-in-three se­ries fi­nal in the Bar­ry Stew­art Bas­ket­ball League on Thurs­day night at the Jean Pierre Com­plex in Mu­cu­rapo, Mu­cu­rapo.

Lon­don scored a team-high 23 points to lift Strak­er to a 75-69 vic­to­ry over De­tour Shak At­tack in the fea­tured match of a dou­ble-head­er pro­gramme. In the open­ing match, De­fence Force de­feat­ed Sto­ries of Suc­cess (SOS) Bas­ket­ball Acad­e­my, 105-92 to fin­ished third in the com­pe­ti­tion.

Lon­don did every­thing right, from steal­ing balls, forc­ing the op­po­nents to com­mit er­rors, pick­ing up loose balls, be­ing in the per­fect po­si­tion for re­bounds on both ends of the court to en­sure his team kept an un­blem­ished win record which has been ex­tend­ed to 15-0.

“I am hap­py with my per­for­mance. It was great hav­ing the sup­port of the team. It is all about the team, we sup­port each oth­er,” said Lon­don, mod­est­ly. “It was a to­tal team ef­fort.”

His out­stand­ing per­for­mance came in front of the one of the biggest crowd for the sea­son. Fol­low­ing the in­tro­duc­tion of play­ers from each team, T&T Olympic Com­mit­tee (TTOC) pres­i­dent Bri­an Lewis did the un­of­fi­cial jump ball. This af­ter Lewis and mem­bers of the league’s dis­ci­pli­nary com­mit­tee in­clud­ing Roslyn George, FI­BA com­mis­sion­er Kei­th Clement and for­mer De­fence Force coach Mervyn Jack­son met with play­ers from both fi­nal­ists.

When the match did get on the way, it was Shak At­tack win­ning the jump but strug­gled to con­nect a bas­ket, miss­ing four at­tempts to be ex­act with the cul­prits be­ing Kurt “Ko­to” Chris­t­ian, Miguel Williams, Shawn Lawrence and Reynold Hospedales, re­spec­tive­ly.

Strak­er used the op­por­tu­ni­ty to gain an ad­van­tage, lead­ing 4-0 be­fore Shak At­tack re­gained its com­po­sure and went on a 17-0 run, to lead 17-4, even­tu­al­ly clos­ing the first half up, 18-9.

It was in the sec­ond quar­ter that Lon­don came alive on both of­fence and de­fence, en­sur­ing that his team stayed com­pet­i­tive but Chris­t­ian, who al­ways comes good for Shak At­tack, was in great scor­ing form and kept his team ahead, hit­ting a three-point­er to main­tain his team’s lead at half­time, 38-32.

Coach Bar­ry Stew­art and his as­sis­tant Wayne “Con­crete” Sandy did well in analysing the first half and on the re­sump­tion, their Strak­er play­ers fol­lowed their in­struc­tions in ramp­ing up their de­fen­sive ef­fort, forc­ing a num­ber of turnovers which they con­vert­ed to points, main­ly from Lon­don, for­ward Jef­frey Har­ris (14) and post-play­er Mori­ba De Fre­itas (10). This led to Strak­er re-es­tab­lish­ing a com­fort­able 56-48 lead at the end of the third quar­ter, outscor­ing Shak At­tack 24-10.

Play re­mained in favour of Strak­er in­to the fourth quar­ter as Shak At­tack through the con­tri­bu­tions of Chris­t­ian, who end­ed with a match-high 27, and Lawrence (14) fought hard to di­min­ish their team’s deficit. How­ev­er, their ef­forts were side­tracked when their team­mate guard Or­lan­do Mapp was called for an un­sports­man­like foul.

Ref­er­ee Michael Wat­son in was in the per­fect po­si­tion to see Mapp step­ping on De Fre­itas, who had fall­en to the court af­ter just be­ing called for trav­el­ling while pen­e­trat­ing along the base­line. De Fre­itas went to the line and hit one of two to put his team ahead 64-56 with five min­utes and 17 sec­onds, re­main­ing in the match.

Shak At­tack had a num­ber of chances to re­duce its deficit in the dy­ing mo­ments of the match, get­ting to the free throw line but missed way too many free throws which coach Gor­don Fe­lix ad­mit­ted hurt them in the end.

“We have to fin­ish our free throws. Our free throws were poor tonight (Thurs­day),” said a dis­ap­point­ed Fe­lix. “It took the game away from us and if we could have closed it with the free throws We came back good but it didn’t hap­pen. Next game we have to play a lit­tle tougher and for­get the ta­ble of­fi­cials and the ref­er­ees.”

Tonight’s match will jump off at 7 pm at the same venue and if the se­ries goes to a de­cider it is set for to­mor­row. A win by Strak­er will see them crowned cham­pi­on of the sec­ond edi­tion of the league.

“The win was ex­cel­lent. It proves that our team could with­stand what­ev­er pres­sure the op­po­nents give. Shak At­tack has a tech­nique they nor­mal­ly use when they re­alise their backs against the wall, they go phys­i­cal” said Sandy, fol­low­ing the match. “We run them out of the court and next game we will do the same.”

Ear­li­er in the play­off match for third place, and im­pres­sive 30 three-point­ers were scored in the com­pet­i­tive af­fair but it was the army/coast­guard com­bi­na­tion team, who had the sup­port of na­tion­al se­nior foot­ball coach Den­nis Lawrence, a for­mer mem­ber of the De­fence Force, that pre­vailed with the 13-point win.

Lead­ing the way for De­fence Force were De­r­ick Box­hill (22), Ker­ry McMil­lan (20), Kens­ley Sandy (17) while twin broth­ers Ah­keel and Ah­keem Boyd were best for SOS with 25 points each.

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