KUWAIT CITY, April 10: Datu scored 25 points after a rough shooting start in the first quarter for Warriors to beat Marina Vikings 70-59 Friday afternoon as the KPBA fifth conference basketball continues at the Sultan Centre gym within the Qadsiya Sports Club.
The all-star guard also had 9 assist including one to Ferrer for a wide open dunk that put Warriors ahead for good in the final minute. Romeo had 19 points and six assists to lead Vikings in their defeat.
Warriors jumped to an early lead in the first eight minutes of the opening half on the backs of Yhel and Datu who alternated in the barrages to script an 18-17 first half run. The Vikings side were gripped by early game jitters despite their coach calling a timeout. They fell behind 11-8 just three and a half minutes into the game. The timeout paid off as they rallied to a near standoff at the break of halftime.
Datu’s glittering performance started early in the third round as he simply blew through open lanes to the basket repeatedly as his team mates set up around the 3-point line. The Vikings at that point had no reply to that. The wily point guard finished with a game-high 25 points with George adding 18 and six rebounds.
A Datu three-pointer, his second in the game, further sent Warriors ahead 5 points clear four minutes into the third but Vikings stepped up their defense to regain control and, with Catacutan finding his range from beyond the arc, entered the fourth with a 14-17 score line that clawed back some of their deficit.
But Warriors appeared unfazed and continued to tighten their grip on the game, Ferrer pouring in another three-pointer and then grabbing a steal off a poor Rye pass for a layup to hand his team a 51-42 cushion.
But again the Vikings hit back, an unbroken 4-2 run trimming Warriors lead to 68-56 before a spectacular Datu three-pointer, with less than one minute left, brought the scores to 70-56.
But Romeo responded with a three-pointer of his own to reduce Warriors’ lead to 70-59 with barely a second left and Warriors held on to survive the Vikings onslaught to maintain their 11 point lead at 70-59 at the buzzer.
Meanwhile, Harley dominated the field to beat Osik 70-56 in the second game of the conference. Osik who had a poor start to their campaign, trailed by 2 points at the close of the opening round, 12-14.
But a rally in the second ignited by Mark Evans saw the Osik scores edge up, even as they continued to be bombarded from the field by Harley’s Regy and his crew.
A 12-point fourth quarter play by Osik’s Evans was followed by 2 more in the round, capped by a series of dunks down the stretch to claw back the deficit.
Harley’s Nice got the final four points of the fourth quarter, making a pair of free throws after he was clobbered intentionally on a breakaway by Osik’s Liam, and then banking in a jumper that made it 70-56 to close the game.
There was Zumba exercises prior to the commencement of the basketball games, featuring ladies drawn from all over Kuwait. The exercise normally lasts about two hours on Fridays.
Also in the third game, Sumague and Tan each had 24 points, Sumague scoring nine of his 24-point haul in the final quarter as Bisdak overcame a first round inertia to beat IFSI by 3 points, 60-57 in Game 3 of the series.
Batino, Bendito and Casula combined for 49 points to pace their side’s loss.
By Iddris Seidu – Arab Times Staff