Roca Team has won the second match in the best-of-five final for the French championship. On Monday night, the Monaco basketball team defeated Metropolitans 92 (from Boulogne-Levallois) 95-88, taking it one win away from the first league title in club history. Saturday they also won with the convincing numbers 87-64. 

It was a much more difficult win than on Saturday as Monaco got off to a dramatic start and trailed 10-0 after three minutes. There were a lot of misses and the team didn’t seem to start the game with the right attitude. The solid backlog was not easy to clear. It was even 8-20 and thanks to a three-pointer at the buzzer, the first quarter ended 15-26. 

Metropolitans played brutally with the talents Wembanyama and Coulibaly in the lead role. But in the second part of the second quarter, Roca Team really got back into the game and the deficit was also cleared in a few minutes. In the end, Monaco had the lead at halftime : 50-49. The audience certainly got their money’s worth. At Monaco, Mike James had a bad night, but Loyd and Okobo did good work to compensate. 

In the third quarter it remained exciting and the guests even ran out in the early stages, but a series of eight points in a row helped Monaco regain the lead (67-62). The mood in Salle Gaston Médecin rose to boiling point due to a few curious arbitral decisions. Monaco closed the third quarter with a 73-71 lead. 

In the last quarter, Roca Team started to play really strongly and suddenly it became clear why it is the main candidate for the French title. With a few three-pointers by Strazel and Loyd, the difference widened (83-73) much to the delight of Prince Albert in attendance. In the end, Monaco played the match well and the victory was no longer in jeopardy. On Thursday, Roca Team may be in a good place to take the crown when the final continues on the Court Philippe Chatrier of Roland Garros, where the clay will be replaced by a basketball court. It would be a wonderful place to secure the first league title for Monaco. 

FILE PHOTO: Jordan Loyd