Myerscough crowned 2015 EABL Champions

Myerscough College were crowned the 2015 EABL National Champions with a 70-56 victory over SGS College on Saturday evening at UEL SportsDock.

Emmanuel Kabengele picked up MVP, with a 13 point, 13 rebound double double, as SGS had no answer for the Myerscough side who turned it up in the second half to pull away in the third quarter for good.

It is only Myerscough’s second year in existence as a basketball programme, and what a second year it has been, claiming four national titles, with the EABL Championship being the icing on the cake.

Myerscough also gained revenge for their Elite 8 exit last year, which was at the hands of their final opponents, SGS.

“Unbelievable,” said an elated Neal Hopkins, Head Coach of Myerscough.

“These guys have worked tirelessly all year, the staff have worked tirelessly all year. I want to thanks all the guys that have been involved back at Myerscough, and the college for backing us and putting us in a position where we can compete at the highest level.”

Kiko Stavrev added a 16 point, 10 rebound double double and Tadhg Hickey joined them in double figures with 10 points.

11059758_728822390563691_6248395278059349755_o
Kiko Stavrev led the way with 16 points and 10 boards.

Kabengele earned himself the nickname the “manchild” for his physicality on the glass and dominance inside throughout the Final Four.

“It feels great (to win),” said Kabengele, who is looking at options in both the US and Europe for next season.

11227424_728823530563577_1736368808587265985_o
EABL Champions 2015

“The fact that we’ve won four national titles this year, makes it even better.”

With Myerscough unable to shake SGS in the first half, it was the third quarter where they took control.

“We only had a 10 point lead at half time,” Kabengele added. “Coach Neal just told us to step it up, not slack off as they could comeback anytime and that’s what we did and ended up winning.”

SGS were led by 22 points and 10 rebounds from Dwayne Lautier-Ogunleye, but were harassed into just 9% shooting from beyond the arc (2/22) and 32% from the field, as they were unable to get the storybook ending they were looking for. The defeat marked the third consecutive year they have fallen in the EABL Championship Final.

Game replay here;


Semi Final Report

Number one seed from the North, Myerscough College, became the first team to book their spot in the 2015 EABL Championship Final with a 66-59 victory over Charnwood College on Friday evening at UEL SportsDock.

Emmanuel Kabengele led Myerscough, coming up with key baskets all game to finish with a double-double of 22 points and 15 rebounds.

11116275_728503240595606_6305543656134431629_o
Emmanuel Kabengele AKA ‘The Manchild’.

“Unreal,” Myerscough Head Coach Neal Hopkins said of Kabengele’s performance.

“All year he’s been a monster on the boards and I can’t praise him enough really. His physicality is outstanding, and he uses it and that’s rare to see. I’m really pleased for him.”

Kabengele had 16 points by early in the third quarter, and did all the dirty work for the Myerscough team.

“My coach told me I had one job to do which was to get rebounds and hustle plays, I came out doing that and it worked in my favour,” Kabengele said.

Earl Russell added 12 and 11 rebounds for Myerscough, while Hafeez Abdul led Charnwood with a 13 point, 12 rebound double double, and UTEP signing Josh McSwiggan added 14 points.

1149450_728503677262229_3861574249814406414_o
Earl Russell had a huge 12 points and 11 rebounds

“First off, hats off to Josh Merrington, I think he did a great job scouting us and they blew up a lot of our sets,” added Hopkins.

“They put us in a position we haven’t been in before this year, which I expected. Charnwood gave it everything, made us work for every possession and were outstanding today. Fortunately we’ve got guys that can step up and make big shots at big times and once again the guys have come up with the goods.”

Game replay here:


EABL Regular Season Award Winners Announced

The EABL is pleased to reveal the winners of the 2014-15 regular season awards, which were announced at the Final Fours at UEL SportsDock on Friday.

Myerscough College’s Neal Hopkins picks up the North Conference Coach of the Year after guiding his squad to the number 1 seed with a 15-1 record. His team had the highest offensive and defensive rating in the league, and were amongst the leaders in every statistical category.

All North Conference 1st Team – Alex Roberts

All North Conference 2nd Team – Kiko Stavrev

10983340_728503873928876_1470477362269107389_o
Alex Roberts All North Conference 1st Team

 

1913399_728504083928855_4502111365269090335_o
Kiko Stavrev All North Conference 2nd Team
11169682_728504137262183_952379950633981685_o
Cian Hickey and Neal Hopkins collecting North Conference title
11050135_728504100595520_7718330846467639243_o
Neal Hopkins North Conference Coach of the Year

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Myerscough College Basketball Academy Programme Leader and Head Coach.