Current French Pro A league leaders Strasbourg continued its fine 2014/2015 season by claiming victory in the French Cup final. The Alsace based club defeated Le Portel Cote de Opale 87-74 to win its first ever Coupe de France and lift the Robert Busnel Trophy. The game was billed as a true David vs. Goliath affair as top flight table toppers Strasbourg were expected to swamp the second division (Pro B) mid-table journeymen from Le Portel.
It never quite panned out that way, but nevertheless, Strasbourg looked comfortable throughout the final and eased to victory. Full credit and plenty of respect from the European hoops community will be extended to the underdogs tonight though, it was a brave fight against the odds.
Indeed, through the first quarter Le Portel kept pace in the opening exchanges and swapped buckets with Strasbourg, although it was the favourites who led 20-19 after ten minutes. In the second frame the ProA club drained 30 points and countered Le Portel’s attack well to build a 50-44 lead through the long break. Strasbourg seemed in control in the third act and the players seemed content with easing through the game, extending to 67-60 after thirty minutes on the hardwood. A 20-14 run in the fourth quarter was enough to seal the win and the French Cup.
Matt Howard topped the winners with 16 points, while Louis Campbell took 15 points and the MVP, with Tadija Dragicevic and Axel Toupane each scoring 11 points.
Benoit Mangin picked up a game high 17 points in the losing effort, followed by Jakim Donaldson with 16 points.