BUTIBAM clinched their fourth consecutive premiership of the Lae Amateur Basketball Association (LABA) last Saturday with a 48-45 victory over arch-rivals NS Busu.
It was a field day for Butibam as their A reserve side, made up of teenagers, also walked away with the crown after defeating Exodus 51-48 in a close tie.
The youngsters had been drawn at 48-48 in regulation time before wrapping up the game in the extra time.
Their win was relished by coach Peter Kesu.
“I’m extremely happy … the future looks good,” he said.
“We have the base in which to select from.”
Busu’s Aaron brothers, Wayne and Percy, and team shut out Butibam for a 27-12 head start in the second quarter.
The fouls increased as Butibam were forced to play catch-up.
The foul situation was just the impetus Kesu needed to move his men into gear.
And captain Kila Giali, point guard Peter Buala, centre Russell Stafford, stepped up the intensity to even up 31-31 at the third quarter.
Three consecutive three-pointers from Butibam’s Dobbin Laka ripped back the momentum and put Busu under pressure to breach the gap.
The nine points from the Laka guaranteed Butibam’s stranglehold while Busu tried to inch back as coach Kesu feverishly looked on.
An exhausted Kesu said after the game: “All that hard work didn’t get washed away.”
He is now looking forward to the national club championships in two weeks time at the Eriku Courts, Lae.