Nigeria’s D’Tigress began their FIBA Women Olympic Qualifiers with a 72-65 points win over perennial arch-rivals Senegal, thanks to an exceptional fourth-quarter performance.
Nigeria came out of the block the stronger team dominating the game and leading by as much as 7 points but their confidence dropped when they fell into foul trouble allowing the Lionesses to crawl back into the game and finish the first quarter 20-18.
Senegal dominated the second quarter outscoring Nigeria 28 to 17 to take the game 46-37 taking a nine-point break into the halftime break.
Forward Yacine Diop and point guard Cierra Dilliard commanded the pace in the first half overpowering the Nigeria defence. Diop had 21 points two rebounds and one assist while Dillard contributed 11 points, six assists, and three rebounds at the end of the first half.
Nigeria in the third quarter managed to crawl back into the game winning the quarter 12-11 but came out smoking in the fourth quarter scoring 11 straight points to get back into the game and led by a point but they never took their foot off the gas.
Amy Okonkwo finished the game with 21 points 10 rebounds three assists and one block while Sarah Ogoke and Lauren Ebo had 11 points apiece. Promise Amukamara and Mujarnatu Musa had eight points each.
D’Tigress will face world Champions the United States on Friday.