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USSA 2017: It’s a wrap – WITS University takes it all

By on July 8, 2017 in News with 0 Comments

Gauteng the home of champions as they say – Wits Ladies and Mens’ teams came and conquered all before them at the USSA tournament hosted at the University of Stellenbosch in the 2017 edition of the USSA basketball games.

With the picturesque University of Stellenbosch as a backdrop to a week of competitive games, universities from across South Africa were hosted in a venue befitting the occasion. It all began on Monday during the round robin stage of the USSA tournament and by the time friday came, the venue was full of enthusiastic supporters trying to figure out who was going to take it home.

For the girls, you had Vaal University of Technology (VUT) pitting their status of defending champs against a WITS university team that were determined to take the gold home. There were bound to be nerves and with WITS running the rule over all the teams on their way to the finals; they would have been confident of overcoming VUT having beaten them during the Gauteng qualifiers before this tournament. The game was a close affair throughout with VUT showing why they were in the finals with some great shooting and inspired by WITS missing easy looks they always had a chance. The crowd wanted entertainment and they got it in this ladies final. In the end, WITS had a lot more to offer on the bench and with a few key plays in the 4th Quarter, they sealed victory by 10points over their rivals. Final score: VUT 42 – WITS 52

After cheering for their ladies team, the WITS men’s team took on a University of Kwazulu Natal (UKZN) team that had upset the University of Johannesburg by 2 points in the semis. With the odds stacked against them again in this encounter, UKZN was not going to lay down and let WITS have the trophy without a fight. They came into the game full of confidence with an undersized team against a team that had players with size, BNL and national experience. WITS are a team stacked with young talent being groomed for great things if they can stay together. Their presence inside was the notable difference with UKZN unable to match them in the post and relying on their perimeter play to keep this game close. At one stage WITS had a 20 point gap that was quickly cut to 10 when their second unit was on. With UKZN making a run, everyone was hoping for another dramatic finish to this tournament. When the 4th quarter started and with the crowd cheering UKZN on; WITS sensed that this run was getting too close for comfort and they reintroduced their starters who halted the run and secured victory. The game was brought to a close fittingly by a huge dunk from WITS which broke the heart and fight from the UKZN warriors. Final score: WITS 63 – UKZN 53

Top 3 classification:

Men:

  • Gold: University of Witwatersrand
  • Silver: University of Kwazulu Natal
  • Bronze: University of Johannesburg

Women: 

  • Gold: University of Witwatersrand
  • Silver: Vaal University of Technology
  • Bronze: Vaal North West University

All in all a great end to a tournament well hosted by the University of Stellenbosch, in the beautiful Western Cape.

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