18th July – Balewadi Stadium, Pune: Haryana Gold maintained their unbeaten record defeating Chennai Slam in a high scoring UBA Pro Basketball League season-3 game at the Balewadi Stadium in Pune today.
In a game where both teams crossed the 100-point mark, Haryana were the better side with the score-line reading 109-100 in their favour. In a battle between two of the fastest team’s in the league, Prakash Mishra made the difference for the winners with a tally of 34 points that earned him the player of the match award.
It was a treat for spectators too, as three of the four teams involved scored 100 or more points on Monday with the Pune Peshwas beating the Mumbai Challengers earlier today.
Haryana Gold began well with Jaskaran opening their account early on. The boys from the North didn’t run away with a big lead though, but managed to keep their nose just ahead in the first half.
Prakash Mishra was in top form throughout the first quarter, scoring three-pointers thrice. Chennai Slam responded through Kenyan Agu Chuwunanu, who scored three-pointers thrice, including a rare four-point play when he was fouled by seasoned Australian player Eban Hyams. Haryana ended the first quarter 31-28, and were able to maintain that three-point lead going into half time. Akashdeep Hazra, the tallest player in the UBA at 6 foot 11” made his presence felt in the second quarter.
Chennai once more responded with Agu making powerful and fast runs through the Haryana defense. He was well supported by Ram Kumar and Jairam, as the Chennai Slam limited Haryana’s lead to 51-54 at half-time.
Chennai came back strong in the third quarter, with Ram Kumar and Gopal increasing the pace. With Agu in top gear, Chennai Slam took the lead momentarily, but Haryana struck gold with Jaskaran and Himanshu Sharma dominating the score board.
Prakash Mishra came up with another perfectly delivered three-pointer, helping Haryana Gold to a 76-69 lead before leading into the final quarter. Haryana continued that momentum in the last quarter, with Mishra taking his game tally past 30 points, and Hyams coming up with some important field goals. With under seven minutes of play left, Haryana opened up a 12-point lead, putting Chennai on the back-foot.
Soon Haryana increased the lead to 16 points, and there seemed to be no way back for the Chennai Slam. Cammy and Agu fought hard and brought the deficit down to single digits, but Haryana kept finding the basket at regular intervals, crossing the 100-point mark in the process. Making it to the 100-point mark eventually, they found their rivals out of reach by the final whistle.
Haryana Gold 109 & Chennai Slam 100