Cool as a cucumber point guard Neil Rowan dug Edinburgh Kings out of a hole and snatched a dramatic winner for a 61-60 victory over Falkirk Fury in the final of the Scottish basketball league junior men’s play-offs at Grangemouth Sports Centre.
Kings were trailing 52-60 in a scrappy encounter with their close rivals in front of a packed and excited crowd when Rowan, whose elder brother Davy and elder sister Annie have both represented Scotland, took a hand. He proceeded to score nine points in a row, two free throws, a two-pointer, a three-pointer to take Kings to within one point with 46 seconds left and a jump shot almost on the buzzer, after he had missed a similar attempt with 26 seconds left and then stolen the ball for another shot.
Even then Falkirk’s Connor Martin hit the ring as time elapsed for what would have been an even more dramatic winner. Rowan finished with 29 points, Matt Wilcox adding 10 and 14 rebounds and Andrew Whyte ten, while Martin had 20 for Fury.
“Neil was superb and it was a great way to end the season,” said Kings coach Jim Wright, who also praised Wilcox and Whyte and the three cadets Rian Neil, Kieron McAdam and Dale Gilmour who had already played in the under-16 final.
In the latter Kings repeated their Scottish Cup final victory over Boroughmuir Blaze 51-44 to complete an unbeaten season and a clean sweep of the season’s three titles.
Rian Neil, who played the entire 40 minutes, emerged with top honours, thanks to 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Polonia Phoenix went down 63-41 to St Mirren in the junior women’s final.