Combined Schools wins title in thriller

Marcian Calderon of VBCC Warlords (foreground) was the Tournament  MVP of the National Basketball Premiere League Division.

Marcian Calderon of VBCC Warlords (foreground) was the Tournament MVP of the National Basketball Premiere League Division.

It was a thrilling basketball finale at the Beausejour Indoor Facility on Saturday, when the curtains came down on the 2013 National League with a Division One game three Final between Combined Schools and the ISE Academy.  A carnival atmosphere graced the Indoor Facility with loud cheers and support from a large group of in camp Windward Islands Schools players serving as an added boost for their Combined Schools team.

Combined Schools won the game three decider in exciting and nail biting fashion, forcing overtime with clutch down the stretch shooting from Lance Louis and great poise exhibited from Troy Louison. He converted two late free throws with two seconds left in regulation. Louison finished 13/19 from the free throw line.

In the overtime, both teams lost key players through foul trouble-Rawlstan Mitchell for ISE and Pakel Gumbs for Schools. Baskets were exchanged early in the overtime before Combined Schools spurred on by their fans gave one last surge to seal the win and the Division One title. A still unhealthy Gabriel McFarlane activated himself into the lineup for the decider and was a big boost for his team but proved not enough, as Combined Schools defeated ISE and crowned champions of Division One Basketball with a 67-65 final score.

For ISE Academy, Gabriel McFarlane top scored with 24pts and 8rebs. Combined Schools were led by the eventual MVP of the Division One Finals Troy Louison with 21 points (pts), eight rebounds (rebs), seven steals and five assists.

Congratulations to Combined Schools and their organization for their first championship of any kind in local basketball.

Meanwhile, the curtains came down on a successful 2013 National Basketball League with the individual awards ceremony and trophies presentation immediately after the Division One finals on Saturday.  The list is as follows:

Division One League Individual Winners: Most Points, Linzel Alcee (Soufriere); Most Rebounds, Pakel Gumbs (Combined Schools); Most Assists, Rawlstan Mitchell (ISE Academy); Most Blocks, Arthur Tisson (Bois D’Orange Lions); Most Steals, Troy Louison (Combined Schools); Sixth Man of the Year, Tevin St Jean (Soufriere); MVP of the Finals, Troy Louison (Combined Schools); MVP of the Tournament, Linzel Alcee (Soufriere).  Alcee was first in most pts, second most rebs, third in most assists, fifth in most steals and ninth in blocks.

Premier League Division Leaders: Most Points, tie between Marcian Calderon (VBCC Warlords) and Desmond Vidal (Dennery); Most Rebounds, Marcian Calderon (VBCC Warlords); Most Assists, Leonard Emmanuel (Babonneau Dynasty); Most Blocks, Marcian Calderon (VBCC Warlords); Most Steals, Keegan Preville (Courts Jets); Sixth Man of the Year, Andre Louison (Courts Jets); MVP of the Finals, Ron Dumurville (Courts Jets); MVP of the Tournament (Marcian Calderon) who was tied for most points, first in most rebs, first in most blocks, fifth in most steals.

The St Lucia Basketball Federation (SLBF) takes this opportunity to thank all stakeholders for making this, yet again a successful 2013 National Men’s Basketball League including the media, affiliates, referees, officials, committee and teams. Special thanks goes to all the sponsors who made this year’s event possible and have continued to stand with the SLBF in all its initiatives and developmental plans for the sport on island.

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