By Oyediji Oluwaseun Babatunde
Sports Writer, kick442.com Nigeria
Nuni Omot finished with a game-high 27 points for South Sudan and almost took the match into overtime for his team, after sinking in 3 points shot to cut the gap to 3 points. But Nigeria held on strongly to see out the contest.
It was a very tough game, but Nigeria will take the victory after stretching their winning streak to 4-0 at the FIBA Afrobasket Qualifiers.
D’Tigers Obi Emegano finished with a team-high 16 points to help D’Tigers see off a hard-fighting South Sudan with a 70-75 win.
Kuany Ngor with 2 points shot for South Sudan, but Ike Iroegbu responded with a layup for Nigeria.
Ike Diogu had given Nigeria a 2 point lead to take the game 9-7 up for Nigeria, but Nuni Omot tied it at 9-9 for South Sudan.
Making his debut for Nigeria, Chima Moneke got his first point for the country converting one of his two free throws, then he made a layup to add to Amaze Egekeze’s 3 point shot which helped Nigeria go 9 up against South Sudan after the first quarter.
South Sudan improved their shooting, they led Nigeria at some point by 11-10 ‘on points’ made in the second quarter, but D’Tigers’ quality is evident as they somehow found a way to stretch their lead to 14 points after Ike Iroegbu assisted Obi Emegano for a 3 point shot.
South Sudan goes into the break trailing Nigeria by 8 points after cutting the deficit from 14 points. They were much better in the second quarter (21-20), but Nigeria will look to assert more control in the next two quarters
Half time: South Sudan 30- 38 Nigeria
Ike Diogu found the bucket off Ike Iroegbu’s assist, but Nuni Omot drew a foul and converted both free throws to keep his side in the game at the start of the third quarter. Iroegbu stretched it to 11 points for Nigeria, sinking in 3 points.
South Sudan players put up a good fight in the match. Obi Emegano found the bucket before making way for Chima Moneke who came in and drew a foul, then made 1 of 2 Free throws. Nuni Omot made 3 points shot, to make the game down to 8points.
Two points and an assist for Ben Uzoh, then Chima Moneke took his tally to 8 points, but Teny Puot’s two Free throws for South Sudan kept them in the game going into the fourth quarter.
Just when Nuni Omot found the bucket with a 3 points shot to cut it to a point, Ike Iroegbu responds for D’Tigers with his outside shot to take it back to 4points. Nigeria then gave away a foul for Teny Puot to convert all 3 Free throws, and they led for the first time by 2 points.
But Nigeria went on a 9-2 run, back to back 3 points from Ike Iroegbu and Obi Emegano.
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