Broke Power end gloomy season

KIU Titans fans were happy to send Power home. PHOTO/ISMAIL KEZAALA 

What you need to know:

Regular season top scorer Innocent Ochera was the only player to score in double figures with the season on the line but his 15 points were not enough to help Power force a decider.


Sunday night marked the end of the National Basketball League season for Power. The five-time league champions fell 70-57 to KIU Titans in game two of the quarterfinals to lose the series 2-0.

Power found themselves in a win or go home situation after losing the opening fixture of the playoffs 68-59 and when the pressure was high in game two, the side crumbled to see their season come to an end in the first round.

Regular season top scorer Innocent Ochera was the only player to score in double figures with the season on the line but his 15 points were not enough to help Power force a decider.

Guard Elvis Ssentongo gave as much as he took from the team with six turnovers accompanying the eight points he registered on a poor night for the 2011 champions.

Geoffrey Soro and Isaac Afidra, the most experienced duo on the team, combined for 16 points while new recruits Robert Tasire and Benjamin Bonza left zero in their points column.

Playing without the injured Francis Kasinde and in the absence of head coach Bernice Ankunda, it was always going to be tough for Power against the Titans.

“It has been a tough season,” Afidra said after the game.

“You have to give credit to these players for what they have been able to do this season,” the skipper added.

Tough season it has been indeed. Power players have not received any salary throughout the season and have had to depend on handouts to survive throughout the campaign.

The exit of former lead sponsor Betway from the Ugandan market left the club limping financially and the season has come to an end with no new partner on board.

Towards the end of the regular season, players came to terms with the fact that there is no money coming and all focus was on winning games in front of them to finish the season.

Tough Titans

But, in the Titans, Power found a much better team in all aspects. The university side was able to make new additions to the roster after the first round and has been well facilitated.

Isaiah Mabeny was the Tusker Lite Player of the Game yet again with 12 points and five rebounds. The guard had registered 19 points and five rebounds in game one and still did the damage to close out the series.

Michael Othieno and Fidel Okoth contributed 12 and 10 points respectively to send the Titans to the next round. With Namuwongo Blazers leading KCCA Panthers 1-0 in the other series, it is expected that Stephen Nyeko’s charges will progress to face off with the Titans in the semi-finals.


National Basketball League Playoffs

Results

Power 57-70 KIU Titans (KIU win series 2-0)

UCU 47-52 Stormers (Stormers lead 1-0)

Nabisunsa 48-82 JKL (JKL win series 2-0)

Angels 63-72 KCCA (Series tied 1-1)

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