Kenya/Morocco: Morans Bid Bye to AfroCAN Basketball After Loss to Morocco in Quarters

Nairobi — The national men’s basketball team have been knocked out of the ongoing AfroCan Basketball Tournament in Luanda, Angola after losing 55-46 to Morocco in their quarterfinal tie on Thursday afternoon.

Morans began the game on a bad note, losing 17-10 and 17-12 in the first and second quarters before recovering to win 15-9 in the third quarter.

With the scores at 34-22 in favour of the North Africans, the home boys came out guns blazing and pinned the opponents of the wall thanks to a two-pointer and three-pointer in quick succession by Ulinzi Warriors’ Eric Mutoro.

Victor Bosire added another 3-pointer to bring the scores to 35-30, right after Morocco’s Kevin Bruno Franceschi had scored one of his two free throws.

A couple of turnovers and fouls by the Kenyans, however, allowed their opponents to regain control of the match and extend their lead to 42-30 before a jump shot by Fidel Okoth reduced the parity between the two teams.

With two minutes to the end of the penultimate quarter, Mutoro scored another two-point jump shot and a three-pointer to bridge the scores to 43-37 and swing the momentum in Kenya’s favour.

They did well to run the Moroccans close in the fourth quarter as Bryan Sivachi converted both of his free throws and Bosire scored another three-pointer to make it 45-42.

However, the ghosts of turnovers came back to haunt the Kenyans as they severally missed out on chances to catch up to their opponents and nick into the semi-finals.

Two turnovers in a space of one minute allowed the Moroccans to extend their lead courtesy of a two-point jump shot by Ali Lahrichi.

United States-based Derrick Ogechi resuscitated Kenya’s hopes with a three-pointer right after Lahrichi had converted a free throw to put the scores at 48-45.

Sadly, the Morans’ challenge seemed to wilt from this point as the Moroccans took charge and ran away with the tie.

Bosire scored a last-second half-a-basket to save face for Kenya as the game ended at 55-46.

Coach Cliff Owuor’s charges were looking to emulate their exploits in 2019 when they reached the final of this continental showpiece before losing to Democratic Republic of Congo.

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