Stingers vs Rattlers in final



Senior Sports Reporter


It was revenge time for the Sunland Baptist Stingers against their Grand Bahama arch-rivals Tabernacle Baptist Falcons, but it was all about earning the respect of the homecourt advantage for the CI Gibson Rattlers against the other Grand Bahama team, St George’s Jaguars.

In the final four of the prestigious Hugh Campbell Basketball Classic last night at the Kendal Isaacs Gymnasium, Sunland Baptist clobbered Tabernacle Baptist 66-55 to avenge their defeat in the Grand Bahama Secondary Schools Athletic Association to the Falcons to secure their berth into tonight’s final.

The Stingers will now play CI Gibson, the Government Secondary Schools Sports Association champions, who eliminated the third Grand Bahamian team St George’s, 66-62, to set up the much anticipated Grand Bahama versus New Providence showdown in the final which is scheduled to begin at 8pm.

Rattlers 66, Jaguars 62: Tashon Butler and James Delia provided a 1-2 punch with 17 points apiece to help lift CI Gibson into the final and a chance to win their first Hugh Campbell title since they last did it in 2014.

Butler also had three rebounds, three assists and a block and Delia added three rebounds with two assists and a steal. Dieunel Joseph chipped in with 12 points and 11 rebounds and Gerrad Rolle nine points and 10 rebounds.

“It feels real good. It was a hell of a game. I know the fans enjoyed it,” said CI Gibson’s coach Kevin ‘KJ’ Johnson. “St George’s is a very good team, very good shooting team. We didn’t underestimate them. We watched them all tournament and so we knew they were going to be tough to beat.

“But we wanted it a little more in terms of our defensive end. There’s some things we need to clean up in terms of our offensive end and be sharper. Number 21 (Shamar Davis) is a freak of an athlete. They played extremely well. Hats off to coach (Calvin McIntosh) and St George’s.”

In a losing effort for St George’s, who put up a gallant effort, Devorne Rigby had a game high 25 points with seven assists, five rebounds and three steals. Shamar Davis finished with 17 points, 11 rebounds and a pair of assists and steals and both Leon Evans and Kevaro Russell helped out with seven.

“We have to prepare tomorrow (today),” said Johnson as they get ready for the final. “Sunland (Baptist) is also a very good team, so we have to be prepared for a fight.”

Stingers 66, Falcons 55: Tianno Roberts exploded for a couple of slam dunks and five three-pointers for a game high 25 points to power Sunland Baptist back into the final, having won the last Hugh Campbell title. He also had seven rebounds and two steals.

Jordan Saunders added 11 points with five assists, three rebounds and three steals and Uriel Delancy had 10 points with 19 rebounds. De’Nage Kelly had nine points and six rebounds.

“This was a revenge game for us. We knew that we were the number one team in Grand Bahama until we lost in the championship,” said Sunland’s coach Jay. “We went back to the drawing board, regrouped, fixed some things and we came back. The guys executed very well. So I am very proud of these guys.”

The Stingers led coast-to-coast as they opened a 19-16 first quarter lead. They extended it to 37-28 at the half and pushed it to 51-37 at the end of the third. They also out-rebounded the Falcons 40-31 and had two less turnovers with an 18-20 advantage.

In a losing effort for Tabernacle Baptist, Noah Bain led the way with 15 points, four assists and four steals. Aiden Miller and Joshua Williams both had 13 points with six and five rebounds respectively. Bradleon Miller added eight points, nine rebounds and a pair of block shots.

After having their undefeated winning streak snapped during the final, Jay said they are now looking forward to going all the way in the Hugh Campbell tourney and right now the only team standing in their way is the Rattlers.

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