Starlites victory not enough for a semi final place
Cynergi Depiro 69 Starlites Naxxar 80 (16-25, 18-17, 28-17, 7-21)
Starlites had a tall order in front of them, having to win by an eighteen point margin. They tried their best, and managed a win, but their tally fell short. They still must be very satisfied with their performance, which makes them a tough nut to crack, for all teams in their category.
A good Depiro start had them in front, until Starlites reacted well, to post an 11-0 run, with triples from Thomas Grech and Ivan Mitrovic. A Depiro brace of hoops had them a basket behind, but Starlites were back with another 8-0 run, to open up a good advantage, despite late Dominic Scafidi points for Depiro. In the next period Mitrovic sank another Starlites trey, with samuel Zammit replying for Depiro with his hoops. Andrew aquilina also netted a triple, but Starlites still held on to a good margin of deficit. At the interval they were leading 42-34.
After the break Grech quickly sank another triple for Starlites but Depiro responded with a 9-0 run to tie the score. The score was on a par three more times, with Depiro twice in front. The latter then put in a 7-0 run with Samuel Zammit points, and a triple. Stralites reduced their deficit till the end of the session, as Mitrovic converted a late trey, which took them 59-62 behind. Mitrovic and Anthony Schembri netted two more treys, and Starlites were in the driving seat. An 8-0 run opened up their advantage nicely, with Depiro unable to get back within the distance. A further Mitrovic triple had Starlites on a double figure advantage at the end.
Depiro: J. Attard, D. Bugeja 8, R. Bonnici 6, D. Schembri 6, A. Aquilina 9, S. Zammit 15, T. Zammit, M. Mallia, A. Quiros, N. Grech, M. Borg, D. Scafidi 25
Starlites: I. Mitrovic 19, L. Vella, A. Schembri 3, M. Falzon 6, A. Felice Pace 8, Z. Stankovic, J. Formosa 18, N. Stankovic 11, T. Grech 15 Referees: B. Vassallo, Z. Dobrosavljevic, C. Farrugia
Floriana comeback nearly successful
Gzira Athleta 85 Floriana MCP Car Parks 84 (17-15, 15-18, 27-19, 26-32)
The two sides were already assured of a place in the semis, but there needed to be a Pool winner. Athleta emerged winners, but a handsome advantage, midway through the last quarter, was nearly wiped out by a late Floriana surge, which had only a point separating the two sides at the end.
Truth to say that the Floriana reactions to the officials' decisions cost them the match, as they awarded a number of free throws, in technical fouls, to their opponents, which cost them dearly at the end.
Floriana had Abraham Portelli missing, but Dirk Schembri made a comeback, after missing a whole season, and played his part.
Athleta raced away to a 10-0 advantage, from Michael Naudi and Josia Whitehead, but the Greens reacted solidly, to tie the score with a 12-2 run, mainly from an in form Clayton Calleja.
Athleta were back ahead, with a David Camilleri triple, with Sean Borg free shots taking Floriana nearer.
Atheleta consolidated their advantage, as Peter Shoults netted a brace of triples, with Floriana's Vasovic losing his cool, and ended up out of the match, with two technical fouls against him.
Floriana's next points had a second Camilleri trey against them, as Athleta held a maximum advantage, at 78-65.
After this remarkable match the semi final lineup was complete, with Athleta meeting Depiro, and Luxol playing against Floriana.
Athleta: M. Naudi 23, R. Vella 17, D. Camilleri 6, L. Stefanovic, P. Shoults 8, F. Mifsud Bonnici, B. Zammit 7, S. Vincic, M. Gauci Montaldo, J. Whitehead 24
Floriana: C. Patus 25, S. Pace 10, D. Schembri 4, S. Borg 8, N. Vasovic 13, C. Calleja 14, A. Axiaq 6, N. Andreejevic 3
Referees: G. Barbara, E. Mangani, T. Helenius