By CAXTON APOLLO
Eastern Queens and International Christian Centre (ICC) are on top of the standings for the first time ever after the second week of the national basketball Premier League.
ICC head the men’s championship standings with five points while unbeaten Eastern Queens, who are making their first appearance in the top league, are in the driving seat of the women’s competition with four points.
After having fairly poorly in last year’s competition, ICC under South Africa trained coach Faustin Mgendi and Fredrick Omondi have approached the 2009 season with seriousness.
They beat Kenya Ports Authority 89-83 in over time after both teams had tied the scores 75-75 in regulation time on Saturday.
They followed that up with a 79-66 thrashing of Strathmore University on Sunday.
They lost 64-61 to Posta on the opening weekend but won the hearts of many fans with their exciting play to tie the match at 61-61 in the final minutes of the match before Posta’s Franklin Delano denied them the two points with dramatic last gasp three-pointer.
Strathmore University and KPA are placed with three points each following their mixed luck in their opening fixtures.
The students had a good start beating Lomboritz 61-60 before going down 79-66 to the team of the moment ICC.
KPA men lost their first tie 89-83 to ICC in over-time but quickly recovered to ambush Terrorists 68-59.
Coach Anthony Ojukwu attributed their performance to inadequate training because of the uncertainty which had surrounded this year’s league.
“My young players will no doubt catch up since the league which had been threatened with the controversies has finally started. We had no proper training programme because of what was happening’’ said Ojukwu.
Newly formed Eastern Queens handled by respected guard Abel Nson started off with a 20-0 walk-over against last year’s finalists Eagle Wings.
Boosted by experienced players from top clubs Yana and Sprite Storms, Queens proved that they are a team to watch when they defeated Flames of the USIU-A 70-51.
The four points kept them at the top.
Coach Nson said: “Our approach with the experienced players will be different in the sense that we shall not depend on individual players to win. Exprienced player such as Hilda Luvandwa never scored as usual but still we won comfortably against Flames’’.
Storms lie second with three points but their performance this season remains wanting. After beating Mennonites 52-34, they were dismissed 48-26 by champions KPA.