Aug. 23, 2007
LOS ANGELES - UCLA junior forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute tallied game-highs of 20 points, nine rebounds and six steals to lead Cameroon to a 58-52 win over Egypt in the semifinals of the FIBA Africa Championship (Afrobasket 2007) in Angola today.
Mbah a Moute has now played four games on the Cameroon National Team, which is 5-0 in the tournament and has reached the finals of Afrobasket for the first time in its history. Cameroon had only reached the semifinals one other time in 1974, which culminated in a loss to Tunisia in the bronze medal game.
Cameroon will face the host country Angola in the finals, which beat Cape Verde 93-60 in the other semifinal today. The two teams will square off in the finals on August 25, for the chance to win the tournament's automatic bid to the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.
Cameroon went unbeaten (3-0) in group play, posting wins over Mozambique (66-54), South Africa (89-59), and top-seeded Tunisia (75-70). After not appearing in the win over Mozambique, Mbah a Moute tallied 10 points, three rebounds, two assists and one steal in 20 minutes against South Africa. He then scored a game-high 17 points and added nine rebounds, five steals, three assists and a block in 32 minutes against Tunisia. In the quarterfinal win over the Ivory Coast, he registered 12 points, eight rebounds, three steals and a game-high seven assists.
In his four games, Mbah a Moute is averaging 14.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, 3.8 steals, 3.3 assists and 0.8 blocks per game while shooting 53.3 percent (16-of-30) from the field, 64.3 percent (18-of-28) from the free-throw line and 30.0 percent (3-of-10) from three-point range.
The 24th FIBA Africa Championship, known since 1999 as the African Nations Championship, or Afrobasket, is being played in five Angolan cities simultaneously: Benguela, Cabinda, Luanda, Huambo, and Lubango. There are a total of 16 teams in the competition: Group A - Angola, Rwanda, Morocco and Cape Verde; Group B - Senegal, Mali, Ivory Coast and Egypt; Group C - Nigeria, Liberia, Central African Republic, and the Democratic Republic of Congo; Group D - Mozambique, Tunisia, South Africa and Cameroon.