Kenya National basketball team, the Morans, settled for second best in the maiden edition of FIBA AfroCan after falling to DR Congo 82-61 on Saturday night at Palais des Sports Salamatou Maiga in Mali's capital city of Bamako.
This was only the second time the Morans lost in the competition having been beaten in their Group B opener 82=65 by the same opponent, DR Congo, on July 19.
Morans’ impressive run in the competition saw them claim the bragging rights over the traditional African basketball heavyweights Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Tunisia and Morocco in their route to the final.
The Congolese opened an 11-point lead after first period but the Kenyan rallied back through Eric Mutoro's spectacular three-pointer in the second period winning by 19-7 points to gain a point lead at halftime 37-36 points.
DR Congo charged back in the third quarter winning by 29-10 points to take game out of the reach of the Kenyans.
The fourth period was no difference as the DR Congo gained another three-point lead (17-14) for a final score of 82-61 points to be crowned champion.
Maxi Shamba who sparked the Congolese came up with team-high 20points, and 7 rebounds.
Three of his teammates recorded double figure as follows : Evariste Shonganya (18), Rolly Fula Nganga (15) and Jordan Sakho (10).
Tylor Ongwae proved crucial for Kenya Morans but his game-high 21points were not enough to avoid the team's defeat.
Morans players Tylor Ongwae and Tom Wamukota were elected in the All-Star Five of the Tournament alongside Jordan Sacko(DR Congo) and Edson Ndoniema(Angola) while Maxi Shamba from Dr Congo taking the Most Valuable Player of the tournament.
Earlier in the day, Angola routed Morocco 88-71 to seal the last spot on the podium.
Final Standing of the FIBA AfroCan 2019:
Additional reporting by FIBA.