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Butali hit USIU, return to summit

Sunday September 15 2019

Butali Sugar Warriors' Zack Aura (centre) tries to go pass USIU's Neville Mulupi (left) and Brayan Kiplimo (right) during their Kenya Hockey Union men's Premier League match on September 15, 2019 at the City Park Stadium. PHOTO | SILA KIPLAGAT |

Butali Sugar Warriors' Zack Aura (centre) tries to go pass USIU's Neville Mulupi (left) and Brayan Kiplimo (right) during their Kenya Hockey Union men's Premier League match on September 15, 2019 at the City Park Stadium. PHOTO | SILA KIPLAGAT |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

AYUMBA AYODI
By AYUMBA AYODI
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Defending champions Butali Sugar Warriors scored in the second and last quarter to hit United States International University-Africa (USIU-A) 2-0 to reclaim their men’s hockey Premier League lead on Sunday at City Park Stadium.

Constant Wakhura and evergreen Zack Aura notched home off penalty corners in the 19th and 50th minutes to uphold their unbeaten run and go back to the top with 27 points.

It was a better show from Dennis Owoka’s Butali Sugar, who had in the first leg been forced to a 3-3 draw by the varsity side that looked disjointed this time around, missing several open scoring opportunities.

Wazalendo had dislodged Butali from the top of the 10-team summit on Saturday when Danston Barasa sunk a double to see them crush Sailors 4-1 at City Park Stadium.

Wazalendo took the lead briefly with 26 points, but dropped back to second place after Butali’s third victory on the trot. Butali now have eight wins and three draws, while Wazalendo have eight wins, two draws and three losses.

“It’s a good win after we shared the spoils in the first leg. We had them at the back foot this time around and they couldn’t have a good shot on goal,” said Owoka after his team’s win.

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“We defended well but our finishing could have done better especially from George Mutira and Amos Barkibir, who didn’t have a good game,” explained Owoka, adding that it’s something they must work on if they are to win this league competitively though the momentum is good.

USIU-A stand-in coach Stephen Wokila rued the absence of some of his key players due to suspension forcing them to make adjustments.

“Our finishing wasn’t good hence we must deal with it if we are to win matches,” said Wokila.

Sailors and USIU-A stayed sixth and seventh in the log with 14 and 13 points respectively.

In women’s Premier League, USIU Spartans upheld their strong grip over former champions Sliders, beating them 1-0 on Sunday at the same venue.

The varsity ladies had beaten the former champions 2-0 in the first leg.

The victory pushed the Spartans one place to second with 17 points drawn from five wins, two draws and a loss as they swapped places with Strathmore University Scorpions, who were not in action this weekend.

Champions Telkom top the log unbeaten with 26 points, while Strathmore are third with 15 points.

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