Last gasp vic­tory for Luxol leaves Hibs bit­terly dis­ap­pointed

Malta Independent - - SPORT - Wil­lie Vas­sallo

Hiber­ni­ans 49 Caffe Moak Luxol 50 (12-12, 9-17, 18-6, 10-15)

Hibs' per­for­mance af­ter the in­ter­val shot them in front, and they held on to their ad­van­tage till the fi­nal sec­onds, when up popped Sarah Pace, who was hav­ing a quiet game up till then, and she made the win­ning bas­ket, just sec­onds a cou­ple of sec­onds from time, and leave her ad­ver­saries speech­less.

It was a bit­ter blow to the Pao­lites, who had more than matched their op­po­nents, and seemed good enough to keep their noses in front, only to have their hopes dashed with that late bas­ket.

Luxol held good ad­van­tages on sev­eral oc­ca­sions, but played sec­ond fid­dle to the Pao­lites in the sec­ond part of the match.

Luxol have now made it eight vic­to­ries in the Su­per Cup, and re­mark­ably, they have won the last six edi­tions of the Cup.

This was their sec­ond hon­our, af­ter their re­cent triumph in the In­de­pen­dence Cup.

Luxol opened up on a strong note, tak­ing a 10-0 ad­van­tage, be­fore the Pao­lites be­gan to show their worth.

That they did, as they man­aged to over­turn the score, with Arm­stead points and more from Naomi Far­ru­gia, also a triple.

Luxol tied the score with a late free throw.

In the sec­ond pe­riod Lind­say Lessard came into the pic­ture for the Vi­o­lets, with a per­sonal 7-0 run, with Hibs then shar­ing the rest of the ses­sion, but Luxol held on their new ad­van­tage, and at the in­ter­val the cham­pi­ons were en­joy­ing a 29-21 lead.

Af­ter the break Luxol kept their ad­ver­saries at bay for some more time, but the Pao­lites struck a pur­ple patch, with a solid 14-0 run, with an Emma Mi­callef trey and more Arm­stead points.

Hibs were the new lead­ers, and had a 39-35 ad­van­tage, go­ing into the last ses­sion.

Luxol were just a point be­hind soon af­ter, but a sec­ond Far­ru­gia triple spurred the Pao­lites on, Lessard took the cham­pi­ons to a tie, but Hibs opened up an­other ad­van­tage.

The last stages saw Sarah Pace as the pro­tag­o­nist, for Luxol, as she first re­duced their deficit, then, in a last seven sec­ond pos­ses­sion, she went through the op­pos­ing de­fence, to plant in the win­ning hoop, leav­ing Hibs no time to re­cu­per­ate.

Luxol glee­fully ac­cepted the Su­per Cup from the MBA pres­i­dent, Paul Sul­tana, through their match win­ning player, Sarah Pace.

Hibs: E. Mi­callef, E. Cassar, N. Vella I. Agius, K. Caru­ana, S. Gam­bino, K, Por­tanier Mif­sud, N. Far­ru­gia, R. Vella, J. Scerri

Luxol: S. Pace 7, C. Sol­lami, M. Mer­cieca 1, I. Baena Me­d­ina, M. Dar­manin 6, S. DeMartino 9, K. Portelli, P. El­lul 4, N. Vella, L. Lessard 23, C. Curmi

Ref­er­ees: B. Vas­sallo, G. Bar­bara, E. Man­gani

Photo: Domenic Aquilina

Caffe Moak Luxol play­ers re­act in cel­e­bra­tion af­ter their last gasp win against Hiber­ni­ans.

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