The Mercantile Basketball League continued as two ‘A’ division teams went head to head last evening at the Henry Pedris Basketball courts. DFCC played against FairFirst and took honours with a 55-43 score-line.

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DFCC took first possession of the ball from the traditional jump ball. At the onset of the game, FairFirst employed a man to man defense while DFCC opted for a zone defense. Both defensive sides did a good job at stopping the offensive plays as they struggled to penetrate and score. Both teams were very quick on their feet attacking the ring leaving very little time for the defense to recover.  Throughout the first quarter, both teams were neck to neck and neither team got a substantial lead as the first quarter ended with DFCC leading by 02 points.

First-Quarter: DFCC-13 FairFirst-11

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The start of the second quarter wasn’t good for either team with both sides struggling to make their shots count. Although towards the latter part of the quarter DFCC began to take a slight lead. This was due to them collecting more rebounds both on the offensive and defensive side as well as their tight defense which forced FairFirst to make a lot of mistakes. FairFirst, on the other hand, depended more on their jump shots and fast breaks to score points which helped them reduce the deficit slightly but they still trailed behind DFCC by 07 going into lemons.

Half-time: DFCC-26 FairFirst-19

FairFirst had a good start to the quarter scoring off a fast break and following it up with another jumper moments after the quarter began. It seemed as if though FairFirst had used the half-time well as they came back strong in the third quarter reducing the deficit to a mere 03 points in a matter of a couple minutes. It wasn’t long till FairFirst turned the tables on DFCC and took the lead. Although DFCC didn’t give up switching to a half court press and taking back the lead towards the end of the quarter. FairFirst found themselves trailing behind DFCC once again and needed to dominate the fourth quarter if they had any hopes of winning the match.

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Third-Quarter: DFCC-41 FairFirst-34

DFCC started off the final quarter increasing the already existing lead and switched to a full court press when necessary to intercept the ball off the opponent’s dribble and increase their scoring opportunities. While FairFirst never gave up on trying to turn the tables on DFCC, the DFCC defense was too tight to penetrate along with that the DFCC players continued to drive in and draw the fouls to get a few shooting opportunities at the line to maintain the deficit. Even during the final minute DFCC never slowed down and continued to attack and tried to maximise the deficit.

Full-time: DFCC-55 FairFirst-43

The coach of the winning team had this to say to ThePapare after the match:

“I think our key advantage today and the main reason we won was because of our defense. Our players did their parts well and forced the other team to make mistakes and capitalised on those to win the match. So far we’ve only lost 1 match and it will hopefully remain that way.”