Final (11:00 AM-12:00 PM) Saturday, Jun 24, 2006
  1 2 T
Kawthar (6-2-1) 13 26 39
Al-Fil (3-6-0) 12 22 34

Too little too late Jun 28, 2006
by Teepu Khawja  

Al-Fil was forced to start this game with only 4 players, definitely not a good start when they were already the underdogs. Surprisingly though, having to play 4-on-5 forced them to play patiently and well. In fact Bereket was having a big game until the other 2 Al-Fil players, Sami and Mohamed Khalif, entered the game with less than 10 minutes to go in the first half. Kawthar ended the half up only 1, by a score of 13-12; from Al-Fil's perspective, not bad for 4-on-5.

In my playoff preview I asked where Sami was and that his presence was needed in order for Al-Fil to pull of the upset. Unfortunately for Al-Fil, he wasnt able to get his game going on this afternoon as he went for just 7 points and shot 1-6 from behind the arc. Al-Fil as a team shot only 2-13 from behind the 3-pt arc, going 2-12 in the second half. If you do the math you can see that the emphasis of Al-Fil's game went from disciplined in the 1st half and working the ball down low, to shooting from the outside. On the flip side, Kawthar was playing a solid game with all players contributing; they even got a surprising 7pts and 5 rebs from one of their smaller players, Mohammed Ali Marfatia. Unexpected but definitely necessary as Kawthar squeaked to a 5 point victory, 39-34.

Though close throughout, Al-Fil was actually forced to call a timeout with 7:39 left in the game down 27-22 as they felt the game starting to slip away a little. Al-Fil had its chances in the last 20 seconds as they managed to hoist up at least 5 3-pointers and grab multiple offensive rebounds, but just were unable to convert.

With the win, Kawthar advanced to face 2nd place Humazah.