DStv Basketball Final Eight Playoffs: Mark Mentors beat Kano Pillars to clinch championship trophy
Mark Mentors Basketball Club of Abuja emerged the national champions of the 2015 DStv Premier League Basketball season after an impressive performance to unseat the defending champions Kano Pillars, 79-66.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Mark Mentors had lost to Kano Pillars in the finals of the 2014 edition, played with a lot of determination to to rattle the former champions.
The new champions took the first and second quarters, 25-16 points and 41-33 points and undoubtedly showed better skills and understanding to end the first half in their favour.
Mark Mentors Abdul Yahaya, Stanley Gumut, Victor Koko and Moses Daudu exceptional performances ensured that Kano Pillars never had a chance to play their kind of game.
The quartet scored 24, 13, 16 and 10 respectively to claim the championship trophy for the first time in their four years of existence.
An elated Abdul Yahaya told NAN after the match that it feels great to be champions and achieved it through hard work.
”We had our game plans and all we needed to do was keep our focus and continue the way we began.
”We did not play with pressure, we were confident from the onset that we were going to achieve this and we are happy to do that in the end.
”The next thing for us is to prepare well for a successful outing in the continental championship,” Yahaya said
Yahaya received the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award for his role in emergence Mark Mentors as championship.
Kano Pillar’s forward player, Abubakar Usman, however expressed disappointment over their defeat by Mark Mentors and blamed it on poor preparations.
”We were not well prepared for the championship; the way we played all through was very obvious that something was just not right.
”We struggled in all the games we played and we are lucky to even reach the final, indeed it is a big lesson for us,” Usman said.
NAN also reports that both teams automatically qualify to represent the country in the Afrobasket Continental Club Championship coming up later in the year.
Meanwhile in the third place match, Gombe Bulls beat Union Bank Basketball Club of Lagos, 63-53 to win the third place trophy.
Dodan Warriors of Lagos, Kada Stars of Kaduna, Nigeria Customs of Lagos and Lagos Islanders came fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth in the classification matches.
The final eight championship playoffs was played at the National stadium, Lagos.
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