M: Miracle 70-79 Warriors
W: Stormers 60-53 KIU
Today at YMCA
M: Power v Nkumba (7.30pm)
W: A1 v Nabisunsa (5.30pm)
Ridersv Kings (3.30pm)
Shooters v Ssaku (1.30pm)
UPDF v Stone (9.30am)
The Malinga brothers – Henry and Eric – reminded everyone who came to YMCA court on Friday night that they remain the toughest dyad to stop when they find their sweet spots in the paint.
A dominant performance from the pair gave Kyambogo Warriors a 79-70 victory over Miracle Eagles to finish the MTN-Fuba League first round with an enviable record of 8-1.
It looked like the old days when they led 7UP Falcons to multiple championships, the last having coming four years ago.
Totally unbeatable when in tandem, Eric’s hot hand got him 19 points with Henry scoring 18 and five assists to provide the difference in a close game watched by a capacity crowd.
“We needed to stop their transition – it was killing us. The experience of the Malingas proved crucial too,” a satisfied Mandy Juruni, wearing his widest smile in months, said.
Miracle, buoyed by a rare appearance by club patron, Pastor Robert Kayanja, had their noses in front taking the first period 20-16 but Warriors took the next three 17-16, 18-17 and 28-17.
There was little to choose between the two as the biggest lead was only nine points which Miracle held mid-way through the third quarter but it also ended as the losing margin.
Stephen Omony, Francis Tumusiime and Norman Blick scored 18, 17 and 13 points respectively to have respectable footnotes for Miracle who are now 6-2.
Warriors, wearing a new dark blue jersey with an orange strip in the sides, had an anti-dote in opting for size whereas Miracle lost it in the ultimate three minutes fouling Ivan Enabu. He made eight of 10 free throws, six of which came inside the final two minutes, for 11 points and 11 assists.
“It was our game but we lost it at the very end. We had a time-out and opted to foul Ivan and it didn’t work,” Omony said. He missed one crucial mistake – Miracle doesn’t have a Malinga and could have done with Ronnie Kasewu’s 11 points and 11 assists for Warriors.
In the early game, Magic Stormers stunned KIU Rangers 60-53 in the biggest shock of the women’s league thus far. Rukia Meme scored a game-high 28 points.
Today former champions Power face Nkumba Marines in the big game of the night.