Campion edge Old Harbour to capture ISSA Under-16 basketball title

Observer writer

Thursday, January 24, 2019

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CAMPION College pulled off an exciting 62-59 win over Old Harbour High to capture the 2018/2019 Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) Southern Conference Under-16 basketball title at the National Arena last Saturday.

It was a sensational achievement for first-time champions Campion, but it was a big blow for Old Harbour High, who were looking to be the only school to have won titles in three different conferences. Old Harbour had already won titles in the Central and Northern Conferences.

Campion's coach Ryan Martell said his players fought off the challenge of Old Harbour and came away with a well-deserved victory.

“I was very optimistic and confident that Campion would have won with both teams unbeaten coming into the final. It was a fighting victory as we are winning this title for the first time, so it's a very historical feat and moment for the school,” Martell said.

And while it was a team effort by all the players, he singled out his shooting trio of Micah Swayne, Ralph Thomas, and Daniel Isaacs. “We made few adjustments in the second quarter after giving away the lead to Old Harbour in the first quarter.”

Martell is now looking towards the National Finals where he hopes to complete the double.

Meanwhile, Ricardo Edwards, coach of Old Harbour, said his team could have won the game but the players made a few mistakes in the end.

“It was a very exciting game as it ensued in a ding-dong battle with both teams exchanging the lead, especially in the final quarter. The players never followed my instructions to slow down the game and allowed their key centre to control play, and we paid for it,” Edwards said.

Old Harbour applied the pressure early and led 19-10 at the end of the first quarter before Martell made a few adjustments to cut Old Harbour's lead to one point, 32-31, at half -time.

The third quarter ended 48-48.

It ensured a pulsating humdinger in the fourth and final quarter as both teams went all out with Campion coming out on top in the end.

The principal scorers for Campion were Micah Swayne with 16 points, plus six rebounds, and four steals; Ralph Thomas with 15 points, 13 rebounds, eight blocked shots, and eight steals, and Daniel Isaacs with 12 points, 13 rebounds and four steals.

Old Harbour's top scorers were Chad Avis with a game-high 19 points, 20 rebounds, four steals, and seven blocked shots; Derjean Royal with 14 points and seven rebounds, and Jahiem Sanders also with 14 points.

Meanwhile, Calabar High defeated dethroned champions St George's College 48-45 in overtime in the third-placed play-off of the Under-16 competition.

Heading the scoring for Calabar were Jarden Brown with 14 points and 15 rebounds, Kymani Kerr with 12 points and 14 rebounds, while for St George's Kevon Gayle got 22 points and 21 rebounds.

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