Published on Monday, February 20, 2012
Hibs Melita Gardens 48
Depiro McDonald’s 43
(9-13, 14-7, 13-9, 12-14)
Hibs recovered from a slow start to beat Depiro in a final for the second time this season after the Louis Borg Cup last month.
Though playing without their US pivot Vonhisa Woods but with playmaker Sam Brincat back, Depiro were the better team out of the blocks. They fought gamely but in the end lost hold of their nerves for Hibs to coast to victory.
Depiro turned around the ball better in attack to hold a slight edge at the end of the first quarter.
However, the presence of Maria Desira on court and a change in Hibs’ set-up surprised Depiro by no small measure.
In fact, Hibs potted eight consecutive points and it was only after a time-out and substitutions that Depiro recovered to share the exchanges till half-time – 23-20.
Depiro continued with their comeback after the interval to level matters at 27-27 but then six consecutive points from captain Lucienne Bezzina saw Hibs start the last ten minutes 36-29 ahead.
Depiro again hit back strongly to level the scores at 43-43 with two minutes left.
But Depiro suddenly lost composure with coach Adrian Mifsud protesting against the referees’ control to receive his second technical foul. He was ejected from court.
There were only two minutes left and Hibs profited from the situation to secure victory, their 15th in the competition.
Hibs: J. Scerri, E. Cassar, F. Mifsud, L. Bezzina 10, M. Zammit, M. Desira 8, K. Gatt, N. Arrigo 6, K. Baldacchino 3, J. Cardona 9, L. Gipson 12.
Depiro: A. Mifsud, G. Mifsud, J. Xuereb, S. Brincat 7, M. Mifsud, F. Bianco 6, T. DeMartino, A. Borg 6, C. Sammut 8, E. Vella, S. Micallef, S. DeMartino 16.
Referees: G. Barbara and E. Mangani.