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National Basketball Champions

CoLA BASKETBALL ACADEMY U17 BOYS TEAM CROWNED BASKETBALL ENGLAND NATIONAL CHAMPIONS!

The City of London Academy (Southwark) (CoLA) Basketball Academy have defied the odds by not only reaching a Basketball England National Schools U17 Final, but actually going on and winning it in style against their rivals, Charnwood Basketball Academy. All this after only two years since forming the CoLA Basketball Academy.

An energised CoLA team took a 10-2 lead four minutes into the game behind some excellent full court play from team members Amin Adamu and Shaquille Walters. Things were never going to be that easy, however, as Charnwood progressed at the six minute mark of the game going on an 8-0 scoring run behind their 6'11 England star, Henri Langton.

The second quarter began and with Charnwood gaining a commanding 9 point lead, using the size advantage over CoLA to get continuous easy opportunities around the basket. The CoLA coaching staff called timeout to rally the troops which had the desired effect, as CoLA came storming back with five unanswered scores to take the lead 34-33 at half time.

Throughout the first half, CoLA continuously pressed the action with Charnwood; the second half began and it was clear the tactics of relentless moving forward against Charnwood was working as CoLA went on to a 14-4 run. Extremely strong play from England’s Shaquille Walters and guard Kemar Hawes saw CoLA take a 16 point lead into the final stanza.

After growing ever more confident after a flurry of four dunks in the 3rd quarter, the fourth quarter became more of a formality with the CoLA coaches deciding to use their entire squad for the rest of the game. CoLA ran out comfortable eventual 13 point winner (71-58) to secure the Academy's first national title in its ten year history and hopefully the first of many for the new and very successful Basketball Academy.

Shaquille Walters stole the hotly contested Most Valuable Player award with 21 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists. Shaquille said afterwards "It was always our goal to be here.  It was a long hard season and things could have been very different. We held our focus however and all feel extremely blessed we can say were are the 2014/15 undefeated U17 National Schools Champions. It was a total team effort"

Co-Head Coach also added "This award is a testament to the hard work that takes place all around our Academy.  It’s for the students and all the teaching staff who allow these young student-athletes to gain the necessary grades to take the court on memorable days like this. The coaching staff are extremely proud of everyone at the Academy and hope this will be the first of many successes".