Gazelles close in on Afrobasket ticket

Ritah Imanishimwe (L) drives past an Egyptian player. PHOTO/JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

Brenda Ekone and Hope Akello led the Gazelles with 14 points each while Jannon Otto added 13.

South Sudan presence could be felt in and around the Lugogo Indoor Stadium way before tip off of their Fiba Women’s Zone V Afrobasket Qualifiers game with Uganda Thursday night.

But what looked like it would be a contest midway through the game turned into a comfortable victory for the Gazelles.

You didn’t need to be in the Gazelles’ team talk before the game to tell what the plan to beat South Sudan was.

Rebound the ball, outlet and get into quick transition against a much bigger South Sudan team.

Brenda Ekone and Hope Akello led the Gazelles with 14 points each while Jannon Otto added 13.

The victory puts Uganda in line for Sunday’s decider but that will still depend on results from other games.

Kenya’s games with South Sudan and Egypt can still have a bearing on Uganda’s chances.

But after that opening loss to Kenya, the Gazelles will feel they have given themselves a chance by taking care of what was in their control.

Brenda Ekone drove to the hole and got fouled on the team’s first possession.

The JKL Lady Dolphins shooting guard once again started ahead Ritah Imanishimwe.

The Gazelles started the game with an 8-0 run but Teny Nyamuoch and Rose Akon shot quick threes to get South Sudan going.

Hope Akello had already registered 10 points by the time Ritah Imanishimwe hit a jumper to end the first quarter with Uganda leading 23-15.

A 6-0 run to start the second quarter for South Sudan got South Sudan back to within two points (23-21).

Alberto Antuna’s charges took a six-point advantage (37-31) into the halftime break.

The lead stretched to 10 points midway through the third frame.

Flavia Oketcho led from the front with good defense throughout the game but also did some damage on offense.

Her three-pointer to end the third frame gave Uganda a 19-point lead.

When the lead grew to 27 points in the fourth frame, Antuna rested his players and exhausted his bench.

Shakirah Nanvubya, Shilla Lamunu, Leticia Awor, Sarah Ageno and Bridget Aber constituted the the last unit on the floor.

Fiba Women’s Zone V Afrobasket Qualifiers 

Thursday results 

Kenya 69-58 Rwanda

Uganda 74-53 South Sudan

Playing Friday 

Rwanda vs. Egypt -5pm

South Sudan vs. Kenya -8pm


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