SDC Himalayan Hounds defeated Goldengate International College after a close battle at the ongoing Kwik’s Basketball League (KBL) 2018 to bag their second win.
Although, Goldengate were without two of their influential players, Bipendra Maharjan and Anish Shahi, who had personal matters to attend to. Not so good for the hosts, but for fans it was a great day to have two teams on a level playing field. And it showed as the score was neck and neck for majority of the time.
The two sides exchanged lead a few times before the game came to final quarter. With 2 minutes remaining on the game clock, Goldengate was leading but with just one point (71-70).
In the end it all came down to grit and determination. And Hounds proved to have more of it. They hustled well and went on to take a 5 point lead (76-71) which pretty much gave them the win. Final score: Goldengate 73-78 Hounds.
There were moments when things nearly boiled over, but they were diffused no sooner than it started.
Saurav Shrestha had a excellent day for Hounds which landed him his second Player of the Game prize. He scored 34 points, a new record for highest individual score in a single match at the KBL. Previous record was held by Rajiv Joshi who scored 33 points against Xavier International on February 22. Saurav also collected 7 rebounds.
Among others, Bijay Burja did his usual up front scoring 23 points; while, Manish KC once again got the double double (11 Points, 11 Rebounds). Mabindra managed 11 Rebounds.
On the other side, Rajiv scored 25 points and Bikram Dongol added 18 points. While, Manish Raj Rajopadhyaya was on the double double (13 Points, 14 Rebounds.)
Goldengate head coach, Bipeen Kapali said that the loss was mainly down to not having two of his regular starters (Bipen and Anish) today. However, he also said the referees couldn’t take some of the calls towards the end (which affected his team).
Hounds head coach Raju Acharya, said that they weren’t expecting the win. “We just said let’s play better and see where that takes us”, he said.
“I’m guiding them more now. It took some time for me to know the team”, he said. “But now we are building up. We are getting stronger. And we are working on the unseen part, the fabric of the team. Our team work has improved.”
When asked if the absence of two Goldengate main players was a advantage, he said, “it was a comfort for us.”