D’TIGERS were narrowly defeated by Senegal in the first game of the FIBA Olympic Pre-Qualifying Tournament in Lagos tonight.
Senegal produced a dominant fourth quarter performance to edge the Nigerian side 93-87 to take leadership of Group A.
The opening quarter was closely fought, with Nigeria shading it by one point but Senegal rallied in the second quarter to lead 46-44 at half-time.
D’Tigers were back in the lead at the end of the third quarter, going ahead by one point after claiming that period 24-21.
Senegal then took advantage of poor shooting from D’Tigers to take the final quarter 26-19 and claim a six-point victory.
Nigeria’s Uche Uroegbu stood out with a game-high 24 points, while Chimezie Metu led with 10 rebounds.
Senegal were powered to victory by Youssou Ndoye’s 15 points and better conversion of their three points shooting and from the free throw line.
D’Tigers will have a shot at redemption tomorrow when they face Mali, while Senegal will battle Mali on Thursday to close out the group.
The tournament, which is the first in the series in the hunt for Paris 2024 Olympic Games men’s basketball spots for African teams, will end on Sunday.