Stingers top Regulators in NPBA championship series opener


Senior Sports Reporter


THE PJ’s Stingers blew an engine, but they had enough reserve in the tank as they held off the Patron Regulators to take game one of the New Providence Basketball Association’s best-of-seven championship series at the AF Adderley Gymnasium last night.

After relinquishing as much as a 21-point lead in the first half, the Stingers eventually pulled away from a 102-102 tie at the end of regulation to take a 116-114 victory to snatch a 1-0 lead in the series that is slated to continue with game two 8pm Wednesday.

“They had great defence,” said Able Joseph of the attack that the Regulators mounted once their intimidator Gamaliel Rose arrived in the gym after missing the entire first half. “When he showed up, they got their energy and it was a totally different game. They played a whole lot better when he came.”

Unfortunately for the Regulators, the Stingers were not going to let Rose spoil their show. When they needed it most down the stretch, Joseph and Kemsey Sylvestre provided a 1-2 spark that enabled the Stingers, coached by Lavardo Bowleg and Moses Johnson, to shake of their disappointment in the fourth quarter as they got the job done in the extra five minutes.

Joseph, playing about 40 minutes, finished with a game high 35 points with 12 assists and 10 rebounds to lead the Stingers. Devon Ferguson and Batchelette LaFleur both kept PJ’s in the game in the fourth quarter as they finished with 19 and 14 points respectively. Ferguson also had 12 rebounds. Sylvestre helped out with eight points and 12 rebounds, while Vernon Stubbs had 13 points and Jervonne Atkins added 10.

Kenneth Pratt and Cruz Simon, who both connected on a couple of big three-pointers, had 23 and 17 respectively to lead the Regulators. Pratt also had 11 rebounds, seven assists and five steals. Carlos Thompson had 21 points, eight assists and four rebounds, Cordero Thompson had 17 points and 12 rebounds, Robert Missick and Fabian Lightbourne both had seven points - Missick with 10 rebounds and Lightbourne with six.

Despite coming to the game late, Rose ended up with nine points, nine rebounds and four block shots, all with four fouls at the end of regulation.

“The fellows have pride. We came out sluggish and without Gamaliel at the beginning, we just didn’t play. There was no excuse for the way they played,” said Regulators’ coach Don ‘Robo’ Dorsette.

“At the half, I impressed upon them about the importance of playing much better and they responded. I told them that this is a long process, 40 minutes of basketball.”

Dorsette said he knew sooner or later Rose would show up and once he did, they would make their run. But he said they can’t afford to fall behind again like that in game two and still expect to get back into the game against a running team like the Stingers.


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