By Trevor Wabwire
The Uganda Christian University (UCU) Lady Canons have been crowned as the undisputed Champions of the 2021-2022 Federation of Uganda Basketball Association in the women’s category.
This follows their eye-catching dominant performance last night at the MTN Arena in Lugogo, where they completely outplayed the JKL Lady Dolphins, defeating them 75-67. The Canons are now eight-time winners of this coveted prize, having previously won it in 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, and now 2022.
After losing the first two series of this seven-series playoff final, all odds seemed to be stacked in favor of the JKL Lady Dolphins, but the Lady Canons were not to be underestimated. They did their homework, putting on a series of masterclass performances leading up to the final.
Samuel David Lukaire, the sports administrator at UCU, was more than overjoyed given the strong and spirited performance posted by his side.
“I think this is a sweet victory for us as a team. The girls played like they meant it and I am very happy about this,” said a jubilant looking Lukaire.
“She was the best performer of the night. I felt like she carried us through the night. She was shooting very well tonight and I am very proud of her,” assured Samuel.
The Lady Canons dominated the first quarter, scoring eight consecutive baskets with no response from the Lady Dolphins and establishing a remarkable 15-point difference between the two teams, 18 to 3.
The Canon’s scoring spree continued into the second quarter, bringing the fans numerous times to their feet as they jubilated and danced while chanting “UCU”.
Halftime came fast for the Lady Dolphins, who went off trailing by 20 points to the revitalized UCU Canons, who looked unstoppable with 44 to 24 points.
The third quarter saw the two sides scoring successively, with the Canons seeking to increase their advantage and the Dolphins to halve the deficit, and by the end of the quarter, the difference was just 16 points with a score line of 62 to 46.
The fourth quarter saw strong resistance from the seemingly frail defending champions, who for one moment made a scare of a comeback, but these thoughts were quickly cleared away by Millicent Otieno, who made a three-pointer right at the buzzer that made it well clear that new champions were to be crowned. The Lady Canons posted a 75-67 victory.
“We are grateful to the university for the support and everything they do for us as a team and as an organization. They have stood with us and have made our programs stand out over the years,” asserted Samuel.
The Canons have been rewarded with a five million Uganda Shillings cheque from the sponsors, Tusker Light, and the Dolphins have been consoled with a two million Uganda shillings cheque as the second-best side.
Meanwhile, in the men’s final, the Namuwongo Blazers were heartbroken after losing to the City Oilers by two pints, 64 to 66, in their inaugural season.