Heavyweights Senegal started the AfroBasket 2021 Qualifiers with a comfortable 92-54 win over Kenya at Kigali Arena on Wednesday.
The athletic Senegalese used an explosive second quarter in which they scored 28 points to pin a 38-point defeat on the Morans who struggled with transition defense and turned over the ball a lot during the period.
However, it was Kenya that started the game on the front foot. The Morans started the game with a 5-0 run thanks to Desmond Owili who hit a triple and followed it with a reverse lay-up, but Senegal responded with an 8-0 run in the quarter ended all tied at 19.
Senegal started the second quarter with a 13-0 run to open a double-digit lead and never looked back despite Morans cutting the deficit to 6 points a couple of times before going cold in the fourth quarter.
Point guard Clevin Hannah harnessed the scoring ability of the big men and shooters dishing out a game-high 9 assists to go with 12 points.
In the third quarter, Kenya capitalized on Senegal’s turnovers to fight back outscoring their opponents 19-11 but had a nightmare fourth quarter on both ends of the floor.
The Morans who fought hard during the first three quarters went ice cold in the final frame scoring just 2 points as Senegal went for 34.
Ibrahima Faye netted game-high 19 points to lead Senegal, Mbaye Ndiaye added 11 points while Pape Malick Dime and Pape Abdou Badji chipped in with 10points apiece.
Despite a poor shooting outing, Tylor Ongwae scored a team-high 13 points for Kenya while Ariel Okall and Owili the other Morans to score in double-figures contributed 10 and 11 points respectively.
Kenya will take on Angola on Thursday while Senegal will be up against Mozambique.