Kenya Lionesses are set to play Egypt today in the finals of the Women’s Afrobasket Zone 5 qualifiers after eliminating hosts, Rwanda in the semi-finals on Friday.
Kenya vs Egypt, who will qualify?
Lionesses roar into the final.
Kenyans were on a revenge mission after losing to the hosts 45-77 in the opening group stage game on Monday, July 12 at the Kigali Arena.
Rwanda started positively in the semi final game, breaking off early to an 8-0 lead before Kenya's Natalie Akinyi roared the Lionesses into the game with two free throws.
Akinyi's free throws ignited something in the Kenyan side as Rose Ouma, Felmas Koranga, Victoria Reynolds and Melissa Akinyi all connected hand Lionesses a 22-8 lead before Rwanda's Tierra Henderson banked a three.
But before they settled on defence, Melissa replied with a three of her own as Kenya finished the first quarter with a 25-11 advantage.
The visitors continued to punish their opponents in the second quarter as Reynolds, impeccable from the line, swished two more foul shots and Ouma hit a pair for a 42-23 half time margin.
At this juncture, Melissa and Reynolds continued their inroads. They were good for 13 and 10 points while Koranga had eight with Henderson sinking 8 for the host.
Kenya seemed to have done their home work well as they kept tormenting Rwanda and a Reynolds trey had it 50-24 with four minutes played in the third quarter.
A Melissa three pointer prompted Rwanda coach Cheikh Sarr to shuffle his charges but Kenya held firm, raging like a storm at sea while controlling the defensive boards.
Wanyama doubled the Kenyan tally making the deficit at 62-31, piling more agony to the host. When this stanza ended, it was 68-37 in Kenya's favour. With two minutes to play, Kenya had rampaged to an unassailable 74-47 margin.
Christine Akinyi’s dunk at the final stages made it 79-51. Reynolds registered 16 points, Koranga tallied 12 and Wanyama added nine.
In today's final Kenya will go head to head with an Egyptian side that defeated South Sudan 99-65 in their semi-final to maintain an unbeaten run since the tournament began.
Raneem El Gedawy scored a game high 16 points for Egypt to increase her points tally in the tournament to 42.
The final game will decide which side will book a ticket to the 2021 Women’s Afrobasket finals scheduled from September 17-22, in Yaounde, Cameroon.
Egypt remain favourites but will be worried with the way Kenyans grew into the tournament, as the two sides were separated with just one point in a game that Egypt beat Kenya 107-106.
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