REG 81-82 IPRC- Kigali
UGB 75-95 Espoir
INTEGRATED Polytechnic Regional Center (IPRC) – Kigali upset giants Rwanda Energy Group (REG) in a tightly contested 82-81 victory on Friday night – thanks to 21 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists from Fiston Irutingabo.
By losing their third league game in the 2017/2018 season, defending champions REG suffered a blow in their quest to retain the Star Times Basketball National Championship.
REG started well taking the first quarter 26-14 before IPRC- Kigali responded with 16-9 in the second quarter which narrowed the deficit to 33-30 going into the half-time break.
In the second half, both sides played an entertaining and competitive game in the third quarter, open and fast, which REG narrowly won by one point thanks to a 26-25 scoreline.
The 2017 National Heroes Cup winners, IPRC- Kigali bounced back more organized and determined in the final quarter, stunning REG 27-20 to record their sixth victory of the season.
Forward Fiston Irutingabo (21), Burundian star guard Gillbert Nijimbere (18) and Bruno Nyamwasa (13) combined for a total 52 points for IPRC- Kigali while Walter Nkurunziza topped REG scorers’ sheet with 15 points. Wilson Nshobozwabyosenumukiza and Kami Kabange added 15 and 12 points respectively.
In another league encounter on Friday, Espoir routed struggling UGB 95-75 to storm into the top four for the first time this season. Espoir’s Burundian youngster Armel Sangwe posted a career high 40 points.
Holders REG and Patriots will be locking horns on May 11 on Match-day 14 in what is regarded as the title-determining game and the most important league clash of the season.