Angola wins Africa Basketball Championships (again)

Angola celebrates 2009 Afrobasket titleTripoli, LibyaAngola took home the 2009  Africa Nations Championship by defeating the Ivory Coast 82-72 to capture their sixth straight Afrobasket gold medal, and their tenth in the last eleven tournaments.

(Discuss the 2009 Afrobasket)

Though that is certainly an impressive track record, Angola had their hands full with  small western coast country.  Côte d’Ivoire led the defending champions by four points after the first quarter, and carried a slim 35-34 lead into halftime.

The Angolans asserted themselves in the third quarter, extending a nine-point lead with three minutes remaining in the third quarter, but couldn’t shake the Ivory Coast. The Elephants used a 12-4 run to cut the lead back down to one before Carlos Morais extended the lead back up to four when he hit a three-pointer to end the third quarter.

Despite the best attempts by the Ivory Coast, the experienced Angolans would keep their opponents at bay, never relinquishing their lead in the fourth to capture another Afrobasket gold medal.

Joaquim Gomes, who put up 16 points and 16 rebounds in the game, was named MVP of the 2009 tournament.

Carlos Morais paced Angola with 21 points and Olimpio Cipriano added 16 points. Pape Amagou led Cote d’Ivoire with 18 points, 4 assists, and 4 steals.

The 28-year old Gomes was also the MVP of the 2007 edition.

In the third place game, Tunisia defeated the defending runner-ups Cameroon 83-68 earning their first ever bid to the FIBA World Championships of Basketball. Amine Rzig led the way for Tunisia with 20 points, and Cyrille Makanda scored 18 points for Cameroon.

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