(20-13, 9-23, 17-20, 23-12)

Malta Independent - - SPORTS -

Star­lites Naxxar Cyn­ergi Depiro 69 68

The open­ing match of the na­tional league gave Star­lites a huge fil­lip as they per­formed a re­ward­ing come­back mid­way through the third ses­sion of play to edge past Depiro in a thrilling fin­ish to the match.

Their last points came from a trio of triples to wipe out their deficit and leave their op­po­nents to do the des­per­ate chas­ing in the last sec­onds of the match.

Depiro’s last ef­forts were all thwarted by a res­o­lute Star­lites de­fen­sive wall as they started their ‘de­fence’ of the league ti­tle see­ing how they in­her­ited the hon­our from the now de­funct Vir­tus side.

Star­lites had a cou­ple of changes in their bench play­ers with Mirko Az­zopardi and Miguel Vella tak­ing the places of Chris Dou­blet and Quin­ton Bugeja. Sa­muel Zam­mit was again miss­ing from the Depiro team sheet.

Star­lites made a bright open­ing go­ing 8-2 in front with an Alec Felice Pace trey. They fol­lowed up with another 8-0 run as Felice Pace and Ivan Mitro­vic put in more triples to to leave their ad­ver­saries fur­ther be­hind.

Depiro be­gan to get back in the match late in the ses­sion with a 7-2 run as DJ Ma­son made his points. In the next pe­riod Depiro found their ry­thym. They started with a 10-0 run as Kurt Xuereb and Robert Bon­nici net­ted their treys.

That put them ahead and a three hoop spread with Dominic Scafidi the pro­tag­o­nist had them on a bet­ter ad­van­tage. Star­lites re­acted with triples from An­thony Schem­bri

Star­lites’ Ja­cob For­mosa about to make a bas­ket against Cyn­ergi Depiro Photo: Domenic Aquilina

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