USIU Flames, Eagle Wings clash for semi-final slot

Champions USIU-A Flames play Eagle Wings in Game Two of the Kenya Basketball Federation women’s Premier League play-off quarter-finals at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on Saturday.

Flames, chasing a third straight title, won Game One of the best-of-three series 67-42 last weekend. A win for coach George Mayienga’s team will see them reach the play-off semis on a 2-0 basis.

Regular season leaders Kenya Ports Authority and Equity Bank got a direct ticket to the semi-finals. Eagle Wings, who finished sixth in the regular season with 24 points, will be seeking to lock the series 1-1 to avoid an early exit.

FOUGHT HARD

Flames battled hard to defeat KPA 3-2 in last year’s hotly-contested play-offs final to retain the championship. Flames, who won their first league title in 2014, will look to experienced Sarah Chan, Cynthia Irankunda, Georgia Odhiambo and Melisa Akinyi for points.

Eagle Wings, coached by experienced Everline Kedogo, are capable of pulling off a major upset. Lucy Machuma has played a major role for the self-supporting Eagle Wings and is expected to team up with Volnet Wanyama and Eunice Ouma to get themselves back in contention for the title. Should Eagle Wings draw level, the teams will play the decisive Game Three on Sunday.

In the men’s Premier League quarter-finals, Kenya Ports Authority face an uphill task in their seek to recapture title they last won two year’s ago when they host USIU-A Tigers in Game One in Makande.

KPA were not at their best in the regular season which saw them struggle to qualify for the play-offs. KPA were made to work hard to beat Lions 81-61 and Trailblazers 88-31 in their last two second leg matches to reach the play-offs. Game Two and Three will be played in Nairobi.

Blades had threatened to deny KPA a chance in the play-offs but USIU-A Tigers dashed their hopes by beating them 54-47. Blades completed their 22 outings in seventh position with 35 points failing to make the top six.

KPA, who were eliminated 3-1 by Ulinzi Warriors in last year’s semi-final, bounced back to finish in fifth spot with 36 points to book a date with Tigers.

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