Sixth LFB Championship title for Bourges Basket

2011 LFB Champions are Bourges Basket © IS/FF

Bourges Basket swept the 2011 LFB Championship series against Tarbes (2-0) to become champions of France for the tenth time in their history.

Playing in front of a near capacity crowd in Bourges, the regular season champions waited until the third quarter to blow the game apart.

2011 LFB French player of the year: Emméline Ndongue © Bourges BasketThey went on a 21-2 run during the third quarter to open up a 17-point lead going into the final quarter (58-41).

The three-point shooting of Cathy Joens (11 points), Styliani Kaltsidou (15 points) and Paoline Salagnac (10 points) gave Bourges the edge during critical moments in the game.

For Alain Jardel, the retiring coach from Tarbes, there was not much he could do. His players put up a much better performance than in the opening game but in the end missed too many shots.

Ivanka Mantic led the way with 14 points while Brooke Smith and Pauline Lo added 12 and 11 points each.

The second game of the LFB championship final opened with an award ceremony for Emméline Ndongue (right) with the presentation of the French player of the year award.

2011 LFB Champions: Bourges Basket players with the LFB trophy © Bourges Basket

Bourges blew the match apart during the third quarter

Tarbes were quickly into their game with 4 points coming from Jelena Dubljevic in a (6-2) opening two minutes.

Bourges got going with a trademark trey from Cathy Jones as they went on a 8-0 run to reclaim the lead (10-6).

Paoline Salagnac fired in a shot from the land of many, followed by a long distance shot by Jennifer Digbeu as Bourges stretched their advantage (19-13) with two minutes to play in the quarter.

Ivanka Matic © LFB  However Tarbes were not planning to give this game up without a fight. Ivanka Matic (left) fired in back to back scores before Pauline Lo hit a buzzer beater trey for Tarbes to take the lead (20-19).

The second quarter resembled a game of cat and mouse with neither side getting the upper hand. Although the match was much more exciting than the opening game in the LFB Championship final both teams started to make unforced errors.

Bourges started to miss their shots and lose the battle on the boards as Tarbes fought tooth and nail to stay in the game.

Despite leading for most of the quarter Bourges failed to open up an advantage and were punished by Matic with a couple of free throws to tie the game (32-32) as they headed to the locker room.

Bourges were more aggressive after the break and scored the first 5 points. However they dropped their guard for a few seconds and Tarbes were back on level terms with a trey by Lo.

Bourges were quick to regroup and started to win rebounds and dominated Tarbes in all sectors of the game.

Tarbes fell apart and Bourges went on a 21-2 run to finish the third quarter with a significant advantage (58-41).

2011 LFB Champions: Paoline Salagnac cutting the netTarbes fought back at the start of the final quarter to reduce the deficit to 10 points (51-61) with five minutes left to play in the game.

Bourges weathered the storm and then went on a 7-0 run, started by Styliani Kaltsidou and ended by Joens to restore the 17-point lead with three minutes left to play (68-51).

Brooke Smith scored most of the points in the closing minutes for Tarbes as the game fizzled out.

Bourges Basket are the LFB champions for the sixth time and the champions of France for the 10th time in their history.

Bourges Basket 71-59 Tarbes

Bourges Basket: Anaël Lardy 10, Maja Miljkovic 0 (6 assists), Romane Bernies 0, Nwal-Endéné Miyem 9 (9 rebounds), Margaux Galliou-Loko DNP, Styliani Kaltsidou 15, Jennifer Digbeu 2, Catherine Joens 11, Paoline Salagnac 10 (in picture), Emméline Ndongue 9, Ilona Burgrova 5, Nina Deal DNP

Tarbes: Jelena Dubljevic 10, Roneeka Hodges 2, Ivanka Matic 14, Pauline Lo 11, Isis Arrondo 0, Naura El Gargati 4 (9 rebounds), Florence Lepron 6, Darline Nsoki DNP, Brooke Smith 12

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LFB Championship final news picture credits:
Bourges Basket

Date created: 05 May 2011

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