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City of London Academy v Barking Abbey

City of London Academy advanced to the WEABL Final after beating defending champions, Barking Abbey 63-52.

CoLA were led by 24 points from Toyosi Abiola with Emerald Ekpiteta and Chanderra Jones-Aryeh scoring 9 points a piece.

The first quarter saw CoLA take full advantage of the home support and energy from the fans winning by seven points 20-13 with 13 points coming from Abiola, Ekpiteta and Khaleah Edwards.

The second quarter saw Barking settle down and lock in on the defensive end holding CoLA to 7 points and scoring 14 of their own behind 8 points from Imani Whittington.

Tied 27 at the half, the second half was set up to be a pulsating encounter with both teams not giving the other an inch.

Behind six points from Savannah Wilkinson for Barking, Jones-Aryeh scored a massive six points in a row in the last minute of the quarter behind and 3-point play and hitting 3 clutch free throws after being fouled on the buzzer ending the quarter 42-42.

The final quarter saw CoLA explode on both ends of the floor scoring 21 points in the period and holding Barking to 10 points. Abiola scored 12 points in impressive fashion and took two charges which seemed to provide more spark to the energy that CoLA were playing with on the defensive end.

This wore down Barking and gave CoLA a huge advantage on the defensive glass with Ire Ozzy-Momodou looking like she was grabbing everything in sight with CoLA stretching the lead and winning by 11 points 63-52.

Wilkinson, Whittington and Katy Armanu all had 14 points for BA.

Toyosi Abiola said, ” I’ve never been part of a game like that. The energy in the gym was overwhelming even as the home team, you could barley hear anything. It definitely drove us on. I’m proud of the girls today, this is just the beginning, we have more to do”.

Coach Jackson Gibbons said, “We would like to give credit to Barking Abbey on their performance, they have a great coach in Karen Burton, everyone knows their history and we respect them a great deal. As for us, we are already on to next week.”

CoLA will take on last year’s finalists, Charnwood in the Championship decider next week.