Rwanda Energy Group (REG) suffered an early elimination from the Basketball Africa League (BAL) 2022 after a surprise 63-66 defeat by Cameroon's Forces Armées et Police (FAP) Basketball Club in a quarter final match played on Saturday, May 21 at the Kigali Arena.
FAP came into the match as the underdogs, having qualified for the playoffs as the 4th placed team in the Nile Conference, while REG had topped the Sahara Conference.
Playing their usual defensive style, the Cameroonian team won the first quarter 23-17, but REG bounced back to squeeze out a 14-13 win in the second quarter, to head into the half-time trailing by only 5 points.
Back in the second half, Robert Pack's side continued to attempt to make a comeback as they won the third quarter 19-17 and the 4th 15-11, thanks to great performances from players like Cleveland Thomas Jr., Kenny Gasana and Wilson Nshobozwabyosenumukiza who tried to provide an offensive edge to the Rwandan team.
However, this was not enough to give them victory in the evening, as the match ended 66-63 in favour of the Cameroonians.
President Paul Kagame was in attendance, as well as a number of dignitaries, for example Masai Ujiri, the Vice-Chairman and President of Toronto Raptors.
In another game of the day, Angolan giants Petro de Luanda defeated Morocco's AS Sale 102-89 to book a place in the semi-finals of the tournament.
The quarter-final games continue on Sunday, May 22, as reigning champions Zamalek go head-to-head with Guinea's SLAC, while Tunisian powerhouse US Monastir will take on South Africa's Cape Town Tigers.
Quarter-finals results REG 63-66 FAP Petro de Luanda 102-89 AS Sale
May 22 Zamalek Vs SLAC 2pm US Monastir Vs Cape Town Tigers 6pm