Friday turns thump-day for KIU as NBL action returns

By D'zyre Derekford Mugumisa

JKL Lady Dolphins and UCU Canons were the executioners as both Kampala International University teams that play in the National Basketball League suffered heavy defeats on Friday at the Lugogo Indoor Stadium.

First on the floor were the KIU Rangers who were looking to cause an upset against the ladies' league outright title favorites, JKL Lady Dolphins.

The Rangers started as the better side, going 4-0 up in the first exchanges, but that didn't last long as the Lady Dolphins quickly took a 5-4 lead before locking out the 1st quarter 25-11.

The JKL Lady Dolphins, who have an unwritten target from their management to score at least 25 per quarter in a bid to keep the team competitive, went on to win the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quarters 33-10, 22-5 and 13-25 respectively, to hand the KIU Rangers a 39-105 thumping.

That was the JKL Lady Dolphins' 5th century of the season, this time playing without 2 of their forwards, Stella Oyella and Muhayimina Namuwaya who are playing with the Netball She Cranes at the 2019 Netball World Cup.

Jamila 'Zama' Nansikombi scored a game-high 23 PTS, with rising star Evelyne Nakiyingi scoring 18, both players starting off the bench. But it was starter Hope 'Axie' Akello's double-double of 19 PTS and 15 REB, contributing to her 34 EFF, that stood out most, earning her the Player of the Game accolade, her 4th of the season.

Hope Akello player of the game

In the second and final game of the day, the KIU Titans, having been the only team that managed to stop the high-flying UCU Canons (64-58) in the first round, suffered an embarrassing 76-33 reversal when the two sides met in their second round tie.

The KIU Titans best was far from good enough

With the passing on of his father, KIU Titans' Etienne Kazungu missed the game, along with fellow key players Michael Bwanga and Denis Balungu, leaving the Kansanga-based side heavily depleted.

The Titans managed just 19 points in the first half, before scoring a misely 14 in the second. Of the 14 second half points, only 4 were scored in the 4th quarter! Sudi Ulanga was the team's top scorer, managing just 8 PTS.

The KIU Rangers next play Nkumba Lady Marines on Sunday 14th July at 3pm at Lugogo Indoor Arena, while the Titans will next be up against the Falcons on Saturday 20th July at 2pm at the YMCA, Wandegeya.

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