Tag: kentwan smith

Bowleg: ‘I Still Want To Commend The Players Who Were Available. They Went Out There And Played Their Hearts Out’

MEN’s national basketball team members in the bubble at the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 Qualifiers in Indianapolis, Indiana.

MEN’s national basketball team members in the bubble at the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 Qualifiers in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020


#Senior Sports Reporter


#BAHAMAS Basketball Federation President Mario Bowleg admitted that the men’s national team could have played better than they did against the United States of America and Puerto Rico in the bubble in Indianapolis, Indiana.

#After getting trounced 99-59 to the USA in game one of the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 Qualifiers on Sunday night at the Indiana Convention Center, Team Bahamas returned to the court Monday and lost 91-85 to Puerto Rico.

#On his return home after he and Moses Johnson assisted head coach Chris DeMarco of the Golden State Warriors, Bowleg said although they only had 10 players in uniform, they gave it a gallant effort in both games.

#“We felt that if we had Kentwan Smith and Willis Mackey Jr available to play against the USA, the team would have played much better,” he said.

#“But I still want to commend the players who were available. They went out there and played their hearts out.”

#Smith and Mackey, who play in Europe, were affected by the ruling of the USA government, which had tightened their restrictions on visitors from that area due to the coronavirus pandemic. But Bowleg expressed his gratitude to the Bahamas Consulate, who assisted in getting the players into the USA so that they could at least play in the final game.

#He noted that the other players they wanted to bring in would not have made the requirements in the bubble in time.

#The other members of Team Bahamas in Indiana were Godfrey Rolle III, Jaron Cornish, Ahmad Pratt, Mychel Thompson, Nashad Mackey, D’Shon Taylor, Eugene Bain and Robert Nortmann.

#With both Smith and Mackey in uniform after taking the four necessary COVID-19 tests before the game was played, Bowleg said it showed in their final outcome against Puerto Rico. “We just have to take care of the ball better at the end of the game,” Bowleg said. “We were actually leading this game against Puerto Rico, but we didn’t handle the ball the way we should down the stretch and it cost us the game. “As we prepare for the next window of the qualifying process in February, we have to try and find a way to get our better players available to play in those games.”

#Immediately, Bowleg said the federation will be contacting the various leagues that the Bahamian professional players participate in and to ensure that they are released in time so that they can compete for Team Bahamas.

#He noted that there are a list of 24 players who fit that criteria and once they can get their release, Bowleg said it will be incumbent upon the federation to get the team to play in at least two scrimmage games to develop the cohesiveness that they will need by the time the next window rolls around.

#It’s not certain yet as to where the next round will be played as countries have been invited by FIBA to bid on hosting a bubble, similar to what was done in Indiana.

#However, Bowleg said the federation doesn’t intend to put in another bid, as they were already turned down when they made a previous request to the Bahamas Government to host the first bubble that they just played in.

#“We’re just going to reach out to the 24 players available to play,” Bowleg said.

#“Once we can confirm the team, we will do whatever is necessary to ensure that they can get sufficient time to work out together as a unit.”

#The Bahamas will have to beat Puerto Rico by more than six points in order to finish in the top three to advance out of Group D to the FIBA AmeriCup 2022.

#The USA remains undefeated at 4-0, while Mexico is second at 2-2, Puerto Rico is third and Bahamas fourth, both at 1-3.

Bahamas Blows Late Lead, Loses To Puerto Rico 91-85

D’SHON TAYLOR (9) scored a game high 25 points. Photos courtesy of FIBA

D’SHON TAYLOR (9) scored a game high 25 points. Photos courtesy of FIBA

Tuesday, December 1, 2020


#Tribune Sports Reporter


#A disastrous fourth quarter collapse saw Team Bahamas squander a late lead to Puerto Rico and finish winless in the second window of the FIBA Americup 2022 Qualifiers.

#The Bahamas went scoreless in the final 5:43 of the game and was outscored by 10 in the fourth quarter of a 91-85 loss to Puerto Rico yesterday at the Indiana Convention Centre in Indianapolis, Indiana.

#D’Shon Taylor scored a game high 25 points to lead four Bahamians in double figures. Kentwan Smith finished with a double double – 10 points and 12 rebounds – Willis Mackey posted 18 points and seven rebounds and Nashad Mackey scored 12. Godfrey Rolle also added nine points off the bench while Mychel Thompson scored seven.

#Jaysean Paige led Puerto Rico with 19 points while Gilberto Clavell scored 18 and Emmanuel Andujar scored 16.

#Taylor’s jumper gave the Bahamas an 85-76 lead with 5:43 left to play and the Bahamas appeared well on its way to a split after Sunday’s loss to the United States.

#What followed for The Bahamas was a series of miscues that allowed Puerto Rico to erase the eight-point deficit and close the game on a 15-0 run.

#The Bahamas’ final possessions of the fourth over the course of the final 5:43 featured six turnovers, including four on consecutive possessions, 0-5 shooting from the field and four missed free throws.

#In an evenly played first quarter, Puerto Rico opened the game on a 6-0 run before the Bahamas came back to tie the game at 12 on a Taylor three pointer.


WILLIS MACKEY posted 18 points and seven rebounds.

#After a Paige layup, Rolle would give The Bahamas their first lead of the game with his three on the ensuing possession and the teams eventually took a 17-17 tie into the second.

#The Bahamas had its best scoring period in the second when they outscored Puerto Rico 30-24. Willis Mackey’s three gave the team a 32-25 lead with 5:31 left to play in the half. Jaron Cornish made a three as time expired and The Bahamas took a 47-41 lead at the break.

#The lead reached nine early in the third when Taylor made a trio of free throws for a 50-41 lead at the 9:45 mark.

#Puerto Rico answered with a 12-2 run capped by Andujar’s layup to take a 53-52 lead.

#The Bahamas still managed to take a 71-67 lead into the fourth. The lead reached as much as eight in the fourth quarter.

#Puerto Rico outscored The Bahamas 20-5 on fastbreak points, 24-11 on points from turnovers, 44-26 on points in the paint, and 32-13 on bench points.

#Mackey and Smith were both unavailable for Sunday’s game against the United States but made an immediate impact as the Bahamas’ roster increased to 10 players against Puerto Rico.

#“We just need to learn to stay with what we were doing. The whole game we were doing a lot of good things, running our sets pretty well, and I think at the end we just kind of forgot what were doing that was successful at the beginning,” Mackey said. “But I think that will be an easy adjustment for us in the next window – running our stuff and realising what’s working.”

#With the loss, The Bahamas dropped to 1-3 at the group stage of the qualifiers and moved into a tie with previously winless Puerto Rico.


KENTWAN SMITH finished with a double double – 10 points and 12 rebounds.

#In the next window of qualifiers, The Bahamas faces The United States on February 18, followed by a February 21 matchup against Puerto Rico.

#The Bahamas would need a win over Puerto Rico or two losses from Mexico to have an opportunity to qualify. The Bahamas holds the tiebreaker over Mexico by the aggregate score of the first window last February.

#The top three teams from each group will qualify for the FIBA AmeriCup 2022. AmeriCup is the FIBA Americas championship. The US won the last edition of the event in 2017.