Baya win on Biko’s big night THEY let him roam around the arc unguarded and he caused them all sorts of problems with his accurate shooting for a game-leading 27 points, including three treys, as Baya celebrated a 63-49 game-three win for their first Seychelles Basketball Federation (SBF) Cup triumph.
On-fire captain Steve ‘Biko’ Denis led by example on Sunday at the Palais des Sports, Cobras’ James Beier loses the aerial battle as Baya’s Hendricks Denis and Michael Cupidon soar higher for the SBF Cupsticking up the threes, rallying his crew early when trailing and putting the clamps on Premium Cobras’ Nigerian forward Alao Solomon, who finished with a paltry 11 points – his team’s highest.
Cobras’ coach Guy Hall, who had boasted about getting his predictions right when his team tied the series by winning game two 72-66 to then forecast a game-three victory, was crestfallen after Sunday’s poor display.
“It was a bad day at the office for us,” coach Hall told Sports Nation.
“Baya really killed us with their fast game. This is because their players are fitter than ours. We were beaten by a better team today (Sunday),” added coach Hall who, along with assistant Lenny ‘Bad’ Aglaé, could not find a way to stop Baya, especially in the fourth quarter.
After jumping to a 10-2 lead on a Robert Léon fourth-minute lay-up, Baya, who won game one 80-76, were outscored 15-5 over the next six minutes to trail by two – 15-17 – at the end of the first quarter.
The two teams traded baskets in the second quarter, and the last time the score was tied was at 26-26 two minutes from the break. But Baya took the initiative with a Hendricks Denis trey followed by a Timmy Adam lay-up to go for the breather up by five – 31-26.
It was almost one-way traffic in the third quarter as Baya outlasted Cobras 15-10 to build a comfortable 10-point advantage – 46-36 – which they carried into the fourth.
As Cobras gave away their best opportunities by shooting air balls on open shots and missing free-throws, Baya – who were missing player of the year and sharpshooter Jean-Paul ‘P’ Camille – were all over them. They committed too many fouls and were over the limit with just 2 minutes 20 seconds (2:20) played in the fourth.
When small forward Dave Roseline made a trip to the foul line and banked both shots, Baya’s lead had shot to 14 points – 53-39. Then ‘Biko’ went to work, netting nine consecutive points out of the 14 he got in the fourth quarter, helping Baya mesmerise the demoralised and out-of-sorts Cobras, who got just 10 points in almost seven minutes of action.
The 27-13 fourth-quarter win put the icing on the cake for Baya, who also got 12 points from centre Robert Léon and 10 from Roseline.
“We wanted the win,” said ‘Biko’.
“So we came out with all guns blazing, especially after losing the league title to PLS Hawks through a very bad mistake on our part. We came to play and we delivered today.
“Our next mission is to win the Top-of-the-table tournament,” he said.