AfroBasket: Nigerian ladies flog Ivory Coast, hit semi finals

Pius Ayinor
Nigerian women secured a semi final ticket at the FIBA AfroBasket Women Championship by blowing out Ivory Coast 98-43 in the quarter final match played Friday afternoon at the Palais Des Sports Salamatou, Maiga, Bamako. Nigeria will now face hosts Mali in the semi finals, reports.
D’Tigress team who won all their five games at the group stage were the bookmakers favourites and they lived up to expectations dominating from the jump ball to the buzzer. They won the four quarters in 23-13, 46-15, 71-32 and the final score at 98-43.
WNBA’s Osaretin Evelyn Akhator was again the top performer on both sides with 21points, 11 rebounds and 2 assists. Kalu Ezinne shot 17points, 8 assists and grabbed 3 rebounds. Nkechi Akashili shot 13points while Atosu Upe made 12 points and 4 assists.
Ndidi Madu added 10 points to the great performance.
Nigeria coach Sam Vincent said, “I thought we recovered a little bit more from the Senegal game in terms of getting our fast breaks going, pushing the ball a little bit higher and finishing well under the basket which we struggled to do against Senegal.
“I thought our defence was more aggressive. In the game against Senegal, we were down a little bit against the physical players, but we recovered to play a lot better.”
He then added, “I am excited about today’s defence, we have only been together for just six games, yet it’s a team that is really competitive which shows how good they are and tomorrow will be a good test against Mali.”