03 October, 2023
26 November
1 Zachary Lofton (LBA)
Game Report
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Lofton, Diabate lead Al Ahly Benghazi to victory against FAP


YAOUNDE (Cameroon) – Al Ahly Benghazi on Wednesday fought hard and long to subdue FAP 86-77 to earn their first win in the West Division Elite 16.

The Libyan champions won the opening quarter 21-18 and kept the lead also in the second quarter 24-16 to go into the break with a 45-34 lead.

Zachary Lofton came up with 17 points in the first half to set the tone for the Benghazi-based team.

FAP, meanwhile, were not ready to give Al Ahly Benghazi an easy way as they fought their way back with inside plays and three-point shots from the wings.

Cyrille Keumoe combined with Arnold Kome to give the home side an inkling of hope but did not happen as expected. Etienne Tametong made some inside moves to shore up the points of FAP but the visitors opened the lead to edge out FAP.

Ater Majok had 8 points and 11 rebounds 4 while Zachary Lofton ended the game with 20 points. Soleyman Diabate contributed13 points to the winning cause.

Meanwhile, Mamadou Doucoure scored 8 points while Arnold Kome finished with 22 points and Jalone Friday added 11 points in the losing cause.

It was Al Ahly Benghazi's first win in the history of the competition.

Al Ahly Benghazi made their Elite 16 debut with 79-68 win over FAP

TURNING POINT: Though FAP fought hard to level scores at the beginning of half second half, their efforts were not enough to catch up with the experienced and more determined Al Ahly side.

HEROES: Soleyman Diabate proved to be the engine room of Al Ahly and was there to direct the affairs on the court as he distributed the passes and had his way into the paint to drop the balls in the basket. Zachary Lofton had his side of the job done as with Marcus Crawford in tow.

Souleyman Diabate

For FAP, Arnold Kome was on hand to deliver but the game was not theirs as his teammates tired out.

STATS DON'T LIE: Al Ahly had 36-27 points from the bench, 16-11 from fast break points and 62.6-52.3 from points in the paint.

BOTTOM LINE: Described by many as one of the front-runners to secure one of the three tickets on offer for the West Division Elite 16 for the Basketball Africa League (BAL) Season 4, the Libyan champions lived up to expectations. Benghazi looked composed, fought for every ball possession and indicated that they are in Yaounde to become the first Libyan team to qualify for the coveted BAL.

WHAT THEY SAID: "The last quarter of the game was the key for us because our opponent played an intense game for 38 minutes but got tired out. We had to bring our experience to bear and we won. I congratulate them for their intensity." – Soleyman Diabate of Al Ahly Rabat.

"It was a pretty hard game. I could say we had a lot of mistakes and hicupps and we need to go back and watch the videos to understand our mistakes, talk to each other. I am disappointed that we lost especially when we had a chance to win." - Jalone Friday of FAP.