Athleta for the first time
Athleta won the first honour, in this category, this season, but it was also the first time that they have won this honour, after being beaten finalists five seasons earlier. As had happened in their semi final win over Siggiewi, the protagonist was their American import, Kwame Thompson, who poured in his points throughout the match, to help his side to draw away with each passing session, leaving Mellieha no room to make any comeback, in the last stages of the encounter. For Mellieha it was their third defeat in this final, along with two successes, in 2006 and 2008.
Thompson began early, with a hoop and a trey, as Athleta kept a small advantage for some time, despite Robert Loporto hoops for Mellieha. That was until Athleta made up a better 9-2 run, to draw clear. Mellieha made a reaction, with Emanuel Lupo in the forefront, but they could only share the points, as Athleta opened up a good lead. In the next period Mellieha trieds to creep closer, but Athleta were in no mood to concede their advantage, and a 70 run helped them on their way. Mellieha's next two hoops had Athleta's answer, with another 70 run, and a Stefan Vincic triple. Ian Terribile also netted a trey for Mellieha, but his side had fallen back, to a 30-41 deficit, at the interval.
After the break Mellieha were still facing Thompson's constant points, and a Francesco Mifsud Bonnici trey put Athleta further in front. Mellieha managed a 7-2 run, mainly from freethrows, but late Mifsud Bonnici points had Athleta coasting, on a 58-44 advantage, going into the last quarter.
A personal 8-0 Rihards Polis run, for Mellieha, starting with a trey, had the losers on a more respectable score. After the match the MBA president, Paul Sultana, presented the winning trophy to the Athleta skipper, Joshua Aquilina, as Athleta grabbed the season's opening honour in this division.
Mellieha: R. Polis 16, M. Farrugia 6, R. Loporto 11, J. Muscat , I. Terribile 5, B. Aquilina 4, D. Miani 9, E. Lupo 13, B. Soler
Athleta: M. Giusti 5, F. Mifsud Bonnici 12, J. Wait 7, J. Aquilina, L. Stefanovic 3, M. Gauci Montaldo, D. Buhagiar , K. Thompson 45, C. Galea, S. Vincic 3, M. Cilia 2, C. Schembri
Referees: E. Mangani, S. Micallef, Z. Dobrosavljevic