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Mark Mentors emerge new basketball league champions

In from Nifemi Daniel …

Mark Mentors of Abuja has emerged as the new champion of the Dstv Premier Basketball League after defeating Kano Pillars 79-66 at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos on Friday.

Both teams were the finalists last year when the Kano-based team won, overtaking Mentors in the fourth quarter.

In the 2015 final, Mentors took the lead from the blast of the whistle and maintained their lead till the end of the match.

The first quarter ended 25-16 in favour of Mentors and in spite of the Pillars’ resurgence in the beginning of the second quarter, the quarter still went to Mentors, ending 41-30.

After the break, Pillars scored 15 points to Mentors’ 20 in the third quarter that ended 61-45 and though Pillars took the fourth quarter, scoring 21 points to Mentors’ 18, in their desperate bid to close the gap, the game ended 79-66 with jubilation by fans of the new champions.

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Coach of Pillars, who was in the national team, Sani Ahmed, said they faced some problems that made it difficult for them to train properly and added that the team will be reshuffled in preparation for next season.

Mentors’ coach, Peter Amedu, said they capitalised on the fact that Gombe Bulls had weakened Pillars in their keenly contested semifinal match, to push for the win.

Gombe Bulls beat Union Bank 63-53 to win third place.

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