Cawmere take out Lodge
Revenge is definitely a dish best served cold.
Just ask Cawmere.
Kiserian Adams and David Walkes, combined for more than 50 points as the title favourites, avenged a knockout final loss to The Lodge by routing their rivals 89-69 in Wednesday’s Massy United Insurance Basketball League semi-finals at Waterford.
It proved more than sweet payback for Monday’s gut-wrenching defeat against the same opponents in the Pine, where Combermere dropped their first game of the season in a thriller.
But the hosts didn’t leave this one to chance, closing the contest on a 21-6 run while holding Lodge to just two points over the final four and a half minutes
This was after the visitors had threatened to steal this game too by rallying from an 18-point second-quarter deficit (44-26) to pull within five (68-63) midway through the fourth.
Combo guard Makaari Jones promptly ended the run, though, going coast to coast for a spectacular layup right before Walkes converted a drive of his own.
Adams then went one better with a nifty Euro step around multiple defenders to restore Cawmere’s double-digit advantage (74-63).
Yet Lodge threatened again, as Rachad Hall scored quick back-to-back layups off a baseline reverse and an even prettier step-through when he split two defenders off the dribble.
However, Adams was there to squash that, too, returning with a deft lefty finish at the ring and a layup off of a turnover after Jones went the full length of the court for another fast-break finish.
Hall and big man Tre Ward subsequently fouled out, allowing Combermere guard Nicholas Hoyte to close out the game in transition with six quick points.
The result put the pre-season favourites into a much-awaited finals matchup with an equally-loaded Samuel Jackman Prescod Institute of Technology side that booked their berth last week.
And Cawmere appeared well on their way from early after holding Hall in check for the most part while attacking the rack with reckless abandon at the other end.
With Lodge struggling to keep Adams and Walkes out of the paint, Cawmere went on a 27-10 surge spanning the first and second quarters that transformed a slim 17-16 cushion into one big 44-26 rout.
The visitors didn’t do themselves any favours either, as twin towers Ward and Kemar Benn either missed point-blank layups or brought the ball down too low enabling Jones to steal.And the speedy Combermere guard duly converted each misgiving into quick baskets in the open floor.
But Lodge started back the half with a fast 5-0 run before Benn and Ward took advantage of Adams’ foul trouble by dominating the offensive glass.
Lodge got within ten (63-53) towards the end of the third quarter and then trimmed that lead to single digits following a long jumper from Kurt Lambert.
Benn quickly added a pair of put-backs before Michael Tannis drilled a long triple (68-63) to suddenly make the contest a two-possession game. However, Jones stripped Benn again for another fast-break score to all but end Lodge’s hopes.
Adams finished with 28 points, Walkes scored 26 and Jones added 14, while Benn led Lodge with 18 points. Inniss and Hall ended with 13 and 12, respectively. (JM)