Preferred Insurance Brokers Pinelands recovered to snatch victory 63-61 against Massy Duracell Lady Cougars in the #1 Beauty Supplies and Exchange Barbados Amateur Basketball Association Premier League top of the table clash last night at the Wildey, St Michael Gymnasium.
Cougars were out front 16-11, 26-25 and 41-33 in the first three stanzas, but were unable to reap the fruits of their labour after a costly turnover in the fourth and decisive quarter.
The scores were tied 61-61 when Latecia Green with possession had time to attempt a two-point shot, but Cougars captain and national point-guard Toni Atherley based at the top of the free throw line called for the ball, Pinelands intercepted and passed to Maria ‘Flowers’ Cumberbatch who sprinted in the opposite direction for a layup.
That thrilling win has earned the Chris Holder-coached Pinelands team a place in the best of three league final where they will await the winner between Cougars and Combined Schools Tridents when the lone semifinal game tip-off on Thursday evening at the Gymnasium.
Cumberbatch, a national point-guard ended the game with 15-points and was responsible for those two crucial match-winning points that came in the last 30 seconds of play to ensure the ladies of Pinelands wearing grey and orange uniforms secured their place in the final.
Other contributors for Pinelands were national forward Latifah Wood scoring 13 points. Wood had 11 rebounds which were the second highest number behind six-footer Anicia Wood who had 14 of 17 defensive rebounds and a total of 11 points.
Tamisha Flatts also registered 11 points while Pinelands captain Sade Clarke tallied eight points, fellow point guard Makela Walcott produced four and there was just one from Janiece Clarke.
Atherley once again took charge for Cougars scoring 15 points and accounted for 11 rebounds having occupied the court for 40 minutes. But it was fellow Cougars point-guard Tiffany Thorpe who stole the spotlight with 25 points in a losing cause for her team.
Cougars forward Jennifer Joseph-Hackett ended with 11 points and had 15 rebounds, but it was center Tricia Gill who claimed 17 rebounds in the game with ten on defence, that caught the eye. The Dexter Griffith-coached Cougars team accounted for 56 rebounds, 20 assists, eight steals, and three block shots.
Defensively Pinelands were slightly behind Cougars with 48 rebounds, 17 assists, 16 steals, and just one block shot. Both teams were guilty of allowing way too many turnovers; Cougars had 20 and 14 from Pinelands who have topped the table with 14 points from eight matches this season.
All three teams in this years’ competition have played eight games, but Pinelands who are looking to repeat as champions for a second consecutive year have won six and lost two.
Cougars with 13 points from five wins and three losses are ahead of Tridents who have just one win for the season.