(ThePapare Basketball Championship 2017, Colombo, Sri Lanka) Gateway College (GCC), advanced into the ‘A’ Division semi-finals as they beat Presbyterian Girls School (PGS), 51-45.
Coach of Gateway College speaking to ThePapare.com said, “This is the first time we are playing in the ‘A’ division so we are trying our best to give our maximum strength and play a very balanced game throughout the entire match”
Coach of the Presbyterian Girls’ School speaking to ThePapare.com said, “We are mainly focusing on our defensive aspect in this match and we are trying our best to get the maximum benefits when implementing offensive strategies as well”.
GCC acquired maiden possession after the traditional jump ball start. GCC went on to draw first blood taking advantage of an unsettled defense from PGS inside the first couple of minutes of the game. GCC maintained a prime defense according to their game plan hence it was a difficult for PGS to add points. The pressure transferred from the GCC defense inside the perimeter was not handled well by PGS as they trailed at the end of the 1st quarter 12-05.
PGS started the 2nd quarter off well as Dilakshi Navodya and Ishadi of scored basket after basket through three pointers and reverse lay ups. GCC`s offense started to crumble as many passes were intercepted by PGS and turned into points on the other end. PGS cut down the deficit to three points into half time, 23-26.
PGS continued the same momentum into the third quarter as they started drawing fouls and converting them at the charity strike. GCC missed out on many attempts as the shots were rejected by the hoop. PGS led the game by 4 points as the quarter concluded.
Coming into the final ten minutes of the match GCC had to get back the form that they lost in the previous quarter to make inroads into the match. It was the fouls, 3 point shooting and GCC`s pace that turned the game in the end. PGS managed to secure rebounds but failed to convert the second chances. GCC started halting PGS`s offensive possessions, intercepting the passes during the last couple of minutes and took the lead. GCC sealed the semi-final spot, winning the game 51-45 at the final whistle.
Coach of the winning team speaking to ThePapare.com said, “It was a tough match but since we did our fundamentals properly we were able to face the challenge successfully. It was mainly the fouls that led to increase our score in the last few minutes and we are looking forward to play better than this in the next match”.