Wolves finally top dogs

The DHL Wolves have been among the best teams in local hoops for years.

The side has consistently been among the top three teams in the regular season but lacked hardware to show for it.

This year that statement has become void with their first hoops title.

On Sunday the Wolves beat the Esso Blazers 99-89 in game three of the division one finals for the Domino’s Pizza Men’s Basketball League.

With the win the Wolves completed a three game sweep of the Blazers to claim their first CIBA championship trophy.

The title for the Wolves came after another solid regular season. DHL finished at 10-2, good enough for the top record in the league for the second straight year.

A big part of the team’s success during the season was defense. The Wolves marched into the playoffs with the fewest points allowed with 704 points.

From there the Wolves marched into the finals after sweeping aside team Colombia in two games in the opening round.

The Wolves did a lot of things right to come out on top against Esso. The biggest of which was getting the whole team involved.

The stars of the team in mainstay Gary ‘Butcher’ McLaughlin and Dwight O’Garro shined brightest, averaging over 30 points and 10 rebounds a game.

Yet the biggest achievement was allowing the role players to glitter, especially Earl ‘Barbosa’ Allen, Shawn Smith and Carson Fagan. Allen was the athletic wingman who could stifle defenders on one end of the court while creating his own shot on the other. He came up big in game two when he went off for 21 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and four steals.

Smith went to work on the Blazers primarily on the offensive end. This year’s all-star three-point shoot-out winner played his best match in game three as he knocked down three treys as part of a 13 point outburst.

Fagan was a bundle of energy against Esso as he was all season. His best game of the series was in game two with seven points (including a trey), seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks.

Even though those players made the biggest impressions, much has to be said for the rest. Guys like Paul Miller and Rafael Rodriguez graciously took their limited minutes and made the most out of them.

Guards Mitchie Williams and Timmy Myles came into games ready to shoot and often made teams pay when they drained their shots.

Looking ahead to next season the Wolves should be the clear favourites. Whether or not they can be like George Town Sports Club and win successive titles depends heavily on who comes back next year.

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