Excitement mounted at St George’s College Friday afternoon as the first team Wolves took on the Prince Edward Panthers on the basketball courts for the first match between the cross-town rivals of the season.
Both teams’ supporters kept up the momentum of lively cheers and songs to encourage their sides. The game started slowly with St George’s leading at the end of the quarter 16-12 and by a wide margin at the end of the first half 35-20. Saints’ tall duo of Tinashe Muchena and Bhunu made consistent rebounds and several key lay-ups again to maintain a more than ten point margin.
The second half started on a different note, with Prince Edward using fast breaks and accurate shooting to score 16 points against St George’s 7,narrowing the margin from 40-24 to 42-36 by the end of the third quarter.
The final quarter of the game was fast paced and it was clear the players were tiring, with lots of missed opportunities including seven missed free throws in a row by the Wolves. Prince Edward saw their moment of light and turned up the heat, outplaying a sloppy St George’s. Forward Larry-King Takura scored three in a row for the Dragons, closing the scoreline to a four point difference, 44-40 with five minutes remaining.
Prince Edward began to use all of their time outs, stopping play after every one or two minutes and frustrating their hosts. However, a Prince Edward foul converted into a free throw followed by a fast break and layup for Saints, increasing their lead to 47-40. The panthers fought back once again with three crucial goals all by T. Ngwenya to bring the score to 49-46 as the last moments became increasingly tense. A final basket on the buzzer by Muchena handed Saints the victory and the match ended 51-46.
Top scorers for St George’s first team were Muchena with 18 points, followd by team Captain, Munyati who made 14 points and Chisango with 10. Prince Edward’s high scorers for the match were and Takura who made 24 points and Ngwenya who made 16.
St George’s take on Eaglevale next Friday, as the season continues