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Masaku Sparks dimmed by Strathmore Swords

Masaku Sparks’ six-game unbeaten run was halted by Strathmore University Swords on Sunday courtesy of a 40-33 win in their Eastern Conference encounter at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium.


Strathmore completed a double over Masaku adding on to their 48-47 win in first leg.


The students put up well coordinated offensive play to outscore Masaku and caught them severally on fast breaks to score easy points.


Masaku started with key players Pamela Sinda and Michele Otinda on the bench while Strathmore unleashed their key trio of Susan Manya, Rachel Opinya and Mollete Achieng.


Felmas Odhiambo shot Masaku top with a basket but Opinya and Achieng replied for Strathmore with a free shot and two baskets respectively. The game was tied at 6-6 before Masaku led 7-6 and Strathmore 8-7. The students dominated from that to win first quarter 16-7.


After 5:50 of action in second quarter, Masaku had matched up Strathmore as the combination of Sinda, Betty Kananu, Felmas and Otinda clicked.


Felmas scored 8-points from four free shots and two baskets while Sinda scored 3 as the scores tied 18-18.

Susan Manya managed the only basket for Strathmore in the period as they struggled to win possession.


With 1:05 to play in the quarter, Sinda made a free shot to break the tie at 19-18 but Vanessa Lubira gave Strathmore a 20-19 halftime lead with a basket.


Strathmore took only two minutes of third quarter to open a 9-point lead at 28-19 through two baskets from Manya and a basket each from Opinya and Achieng.


Second half substitute Bianca Nyambura made two crucial steals from Kananu to help Strathmore stretch their lead to 12 points at 32-20. Kananu who is Masaku’s leading scorer had a bad day in office finishing the game with 9 points and 10 turnovers.


She was guilty of losing possession easily in third and fourth quarters at a time Masaku was chasing a comeback.


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