By Shannon Nicholas
Maris Stella College, Negombo and St. Joseph’s Girls’ School, Nugegoda were crowned Boys’ and Girls’ champions respectively at the All-Island Under-19 Basketball Championship 2018 held at the Sri Lanka Air Force Health Management Centre Indoor Basketball Courts in Colombo yesterday (1).
The lads from Negombo entered the final against S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia as the underdogs but were able to topple their opponents with ease with the final scores reading 46-41.
Maris Stella opened the scoring through Mineth de Croos, but the Thomians caught up soon and went to end the quarter ahead with the scores reading 11-9.
Maris Stella took a six point lead at one stage in the second quarter but the Thomians were able to add 11 more points as they led 22-18 at half time.
Ten points, including two three-pointers from Malshan Rumaiz, helped Maris Stella step up their game as they took the lead in the third quarter. S. Thomas’ were not far behind as the scores read 33-31.
In a very intense fourth quarter, the Thomians seemed to have lost it as Maris Stella kept scoring regularly.
Handling the mounting pressure brilliantly, they held on to a resounding 46-41 victory.
Malshan top scored with 18 points for the winners while Aaron Fernando scored 10 points for the Thomians.
Prior to the Boys’ final, St. Joseph’s were able to comfortably beat Holy Family Convent, (HFC) Bambalapitiya 58-46 in the Girls’ final.
St. Joseph’s took a massive 10 point lead as they ended the first quarter at 22-12. This early lead was what kept them going as the Familians never got to take the lead throughout the game.
The winners piled up 13 more points as the second quarter came to an end with the scores reading 35-22.
The scores read 45-33 at the end of the third quarter which saw the winners scoring 10 points while restricting their opponents to 11.
HFC Skipper Sandrene David played an inspiring game as she starred with 17 points while H. K. Thisari chipped in with 24 points for the winners.
Best Defensive Player: Dunal Fernando (S. Thomas’, Mount Lavinia).
Best Offensive Player: Malshan Rumaiz (Maris Stella, Negombo).
Most Valuable Player: Chenura de Alwis (Maris Stella, Negombo).
Best Defensive Player: H. K. Thisari (St. Joseph’s).
Best Offensive Player: Sandrene David (HFC).
Most Valuable Player: Taniya Perera (St. Joseph’s).