Edinburgh Kool Kats completed their second ever treble of national honours, adding the Scottish League Play-offs to their Scottish Cup and League basketball titles with a 67-64 final win over Glasgow Rocks at the Pleasance Sports Centre, Edinburgh University.
Up 34-23 at half-time Kats, who achieved the same feat three years ago, allowed Rocks to take the lead briefly at 64-62, helped by fine shooting from Tony Carvill (18 points) and Rona Corkindale (20), the latter being named MVP.
But a flurry of five points, including a three-pointer to finish, from GB Olympian Rose Anderson, who had struggled to find the target earlier, just took Jets home.
Kats owed much to Tracey Phillips, who top-scored with 18 points with a remarkable 72 per cent accuracy and took 11 rebounds, Hannah Peacock who also had a “double double” with 16 points and 13 rebounds and Emma Findlay who added ten points. “We didn’t play as well as we have during the season,” said coach Ben Gunn. “We did enough but the month gap since our last game didn’t help.”
Another trophy stayed in the city when Edinburgh University easily won the Scottish Chairman’s Cup, beating West Lothian Wolves 91-35 on Saturday night after leading 45-13 at half-time. Victory added to the Scottish Universities title and British Universities Trophy already in their locker this season.
Davy Rowan gave a remarkable shooting display, scoring six three-pointers in his tally of 28 points tally while Jac St John added 21 points and nine rebounds, and Rodger Watt scored ten points.
Edinburgh’s close rivals Glasgow University achieved the best result in their history when they won the men’s Play-offs with a 90-79 victory over second seeds St Mirren at the Pleasance last night.
They owed their first ever national title win to some fine outside shooting and tenacious defence, inspired by MVP Al Alilovic, who scored 24 points and took 13 rebounds, and fellow Canadian John Bustin, who scored 33 points.
Also prominent was Steve Archer, who produced 17 points and 11 rebounds.
“It’s a great way to end my career at Glasgow,” said law graduate Alilovic, who goes back to Canada shortly. Only fifth in the league at the end of the regular season, Glasgow created the shock of the season when they defeated the previously unbeaten Scottish Cup and League Champions Falkirk Fury 72-64 in the semi-final on Friday night.
Bustin with 24 points and Alilovic with 18 had led the students who fought back from 10-0 down at the start and 38-28 down at half-time.
Many wondered if they could do it again two days later but, despite the best efforts of Saints’ Scottish caps Nic Collins (26 points) and Chris Cleary (20), Glasgow, up 46-41 at half-time, held on for a memorable victory. “We found a way of containing Collins if not stopping him - he’s a fantastically difficult player to stop,” added Alilovic.
St Mirren had come back from 14 points down to defeat Edinburgh Kings 73-68 in their semi-final but there was to be no repeat.