BMC South Siders earned their first win of the Kwik’s Basketball League (KBL) 2018 defeating Xavier Int’l College at overtime.
NeBA National Championships 2016 winner, Siders, were desperate for a win after after losing 4 games on the trot. But then so was Xavier Int’l who are yet to win. Fortunately, for the hosts, they had an excellent return on their outside shooting which made the difference.
The visitors, Xavier Int’l youngsters, looked lively to start with…Anish Magar had a good start…scored a few long shots. But the hosts did just about enough to finish the first quarter on lead thanks to 10 points (6 of those from 3-pointers) from Sanjay Byanjankar Sr.
Xavier Int’l did well to keep a close distance for much of the second quarter too but a brief pressure late in the second quarter from the hosts widened the gap. Two treys from Rabin Gautam and one from Sanjay Byanjankar Jr helped the hosts finish first half on a high.
However, it was the visitors who came on strong after the break. Xavier Int’l guard, Anish Magar, did well on the outside while Nikesh Magar and Rakesh Shrestha got the inside shots to catch up with the hosts. They didn’t just leave it at that but at one point went on to lead by 10 points.
But then, dejavu. Late in the fourth quarter, Xavier Int’l couldn’t hold on to their lead…their 10 point lead slowly disappeared just as in their previous matches. And with seconds to spare, Sanjay Byanjankar Sr. scored his third 3-pointer to level the game at 63 points a piece.
Ajay Kushwaha went close for a winner with a low post attempt few seconds before the buzzer but a semi-toilet bowl came out the other side.
Come the overtime, 3-pointers from Minesh and Wisdom Pandey pretty much settled the game in Siders’ favour.
Final score: Siders 73-67 Xavier (Box score)
Minesh Shakya got the double double (20 points, 14 rebounds) as well as contributing 3 assists and 1 steal which landed him the Player of the Game prize. Sanjay Byanjankar Sr and Rabin Gautam were in the double digit scoreline.
For the visitors, Anish Magar went on the score 30 points but it was apparently not enough to get into the winners circle.
After the game, Xavier Int’l head coach, Nripesh Shrestha expressed a complete dissatisfaction with the referees. “Officials missed a lot of foul calls”, he said. “They started to make more calls after we shouted but not before.”
“We played well today. Today’s loss was entirely down to bad refereeing”, he added.
Meanwhile, Siders head coach, Ashish KC had a mixed reaction. In one hand he was very happy with the result…their first win. On the other hand, he said, “We still lack team co-ordination. We were sluggish in the third quarter. I’m not happy with the performance.”