Lyceum International School Wattala triumphed over Gateway College Colombo in a thrilling game in the Girls’ final of the Inter-International Basketball Championship. Fortunately for Lyceum as the final whistle was blown the score was in their favour 43-41.
The game was started off by Lyceum as they drew first blood. Lyceum took a big risk starting off the game with their injured skipper Pawani who had a broken hand, whilst on the other side of the court the girls from Gateway had a few chances at shots from the line through which they scored their first basket. Throughout the quarter Lyceum was trying their luck from around the perimeter but none of these shots connected leading to a lot of turnovers and making it a slow quarter for Lyceum.
First Quarter: Gateway College – 11 Lyceum International School Wattala – 4
The second quarter was started off with Pawani scoring first after a few missed shots. Lyceum switched to a half-court press and soon levelled the score as one of their attempts from beyond the perimeter finally connected and Gateway lost their edge. However Gateway was playing a good team game as the point guard Kiara Ekanayake was setting up the plays and passing the ball to the open player while Yischelle Foenander did a great job at securing the rebounds for Gateway allowing them to stay in the game and go into lemons tied but they missed a lot of opportunities at the line which could have given them the lead.
Half Time: Gateway College – 14 Lyceum International School Wattala – 14
The third quarter was started off by Gateway with a shot from downtown but once again it was the injured skipper who replied to it with another shot. Lyceum decided to move up to a full court press early on in this quarter to try and stop Gateway in their tracks and score before they make it to the other side of the court. Both teams were well matched and due to that, it was difficult to see one team having the clear advantage as both teams’ defenses didn’t allow either side to have possession for longer than 20 seconds. 30 minutes into the game the tables had turned and Lyceum was leading into the final 10 minutes.
Third Quarter: Gateway College – 25 Lyceum International School Wattala – 29
During the final quarter, Gateway got back into the game levelling the score in the first minute but Lyceum didn’t give in either as all the practice of taking 3’s in the first quarter had paid off as they scored from around the perimeter maintaining control of the game. It was a thrilling 10 minutes as both teams were fighting hard to obtain a lead of more than 2 points. Gateway decided to opt for a man to man defense during this quarter to reduce the shots taken by Lyceum as they preferred to take jumpers than drive into the rim. With 30 seconds remaining after the final shot by Lyceum Gateway was looking for one more basket to even up the score and head to overtime but they ran out of luck as the final whistle blew when the ball was in possession of their opponents.
Full time: Gateway College – 41 Lyceum International School Wattala – 43
The coach of the winning team of Lyceum Wattala shared his thoughts on the match with ThePapare representatives: “It was definitely a difficult match considering how the semi-final match injured our captain as two of her fingers were fractured. It was also difficult since 2 of our key players switched schools to Gateway leaving us with fewer people to play with but fortune was in our favour this evening as we won the match by a basket.”
The coach of Gateway shared his thoughts on what he thought went wrong during the match: “It was definitely a difficult match and even though we led during the 1st half the second half is the deciding one and I think we slowed down on our defense a little allowing them to get that one extra shot more than us.”