Dream run for Umoja

By francis marangu
Jul 07, 2017
  • Umoja could continue their winning streak when they face Zetech who are on the lower rungs of the league table. (SNA. File Photo)

Umoja’s dream run in the Kenya Basketball Federation men’s Premier League could continue over the weekend as they play Zetech University on Saturday morning.

They have gone for six straight games without a loss and the highlight was their win over Ulinzi Warriors.

Currently third on the log with 24 points, Umoja are firmly in the race to make their first playoffs appearance. But, they have to maintain the momentum in the remaining games.

They have already played at least two games more than other possible playoffs contenders. Zetech, their opponent on Saturday are bottom of the log with 14 points.

They have been dealt a major blow with the expected long absence of their high-scoring big-man Jeremy Opiyo who is injured.

Nick Ogol and Gilbert Obeiro are the driving engines for Umoja while the addition of experienced Allan Ouma has worked to their advantage. Wycliffe Olanya and William Okombo are the key players for Zetech with good shooting.

Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) has played the least number of games at 10 and will be in Nairobi for two crucial ties.

They play Co-operative Bank on Saturday and Nairobi City Thunder on Sunday. The dockers lost to the bankers in Mombasa but beat Thunder.

Last weekend, Thunder beat Co-op Bank in a game that showed they have good cover for the missing Griffin Ligare. Paul Nyakinda fitted in well to the shooting role supported by the untiring Abel Nson.

These two players will be their key arsenal against KPA. James Mwangi could make a return against KPA after sitting out in the loss to Thunder.

Ulinzi who currently top the log with 27 points will play Equity Bank on Sunday while United States International University- Africa (USIU-A) will play Kenya College of Accountancy- University (KCA-U).

Strathmore Blades face Lions

Fourth-placed Strathmore Blades will face Lions who have so far registered two wins. They have gone for a month without a win.

KPA, the only unbeaten team in the women’s Premier League will tour Nairobi to play Co-op Bank on Saturday and Eagle Wings on Sunday.

The dockers upped their stakes in this season’s contest after completing a season double over champions Equity Bank last weekend. The win took their record to 9-0 so far.

Equity will have another test for the weekend when they play Strathmore University. Two points separate both teams with Equity winning seven of their nine games against five wins for Strathmore in same number of games.

Last season, Strathmore snatched a late 51-49 win over Equity in the last 20 seconds of the game and their squad has remained relatively unchanged.

Equity comes in with an experienced squad and will have the height advantage over Strathmore. Mollete Achieng and Susan Manya will lead Strathmore’s fight in their bid to bring down the champions.

Western Delight, the only winless team will play Eagle Wings on Saturday and Storms on Sunday. Kenyatta University has a date with Zetech University on Sunday.

Fixtures

Saturday: Umoja vs Zetech University (8:30 a.m., Nyayo gymnasium), Eagle Wings vs Western Delight (10 a.m.), Lions vs Blades (11:30), Equity Bank Hawks vs Strathmore Swords (1 p.m.), Co-op Bank vs KPA – women (2:30), Co-op Bank vs KPA – men (4 p.m.), Neosasa Morans vs Little Prince (8:30 a.m., Upper Hill School), Riara University vs Blazers (10 a.m.), UoN Terrorists vs Nakuru Club (11:30), World Hope vs Zetech Sharks (1 p.m.), KAA vs ANU (2:30), Kenyatta University Pirates vs Strathmore University (4 p.m.), Lakeside vs Upperhill (9 a.m., Kisumu), Nebulas vs. Upper Hill (2 p.m., Kakamega).

Sunday: Storms vs Western Delight (8:30 a.m., Nyayo gymnasium), Zetech University vs Kenyatta University Oryx (10 a.m.), Eagle Wings vs KPA (11:30), KCA-U vs USIU-A (1 p.m.), Equity Bank vs Ulinzi Warriors (2:30), Thunder vs KPA (4 p.m.), ANU vs Footprints (8:30 a.m., Upper Hill School), 4-Christ vs NIBS (10 a.m.), Gladiators vs Masaku Sparks (11:30), Strathmore University vs KCA-U (1 p.m.), Barclays Bank vs ANU (2:30), Eldonets vs Upper Hill (10 a.m., Eldoret).