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Butali move a point clear at the top



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Champions Butali Sugar Warriors went one point clear at the top of the men’s hockey Premier League standings despite being forced to a 3-3 draw by United States International University on Saturday at City Park over the weekend.

It’s former Kenya Police striker Amos Barkibir’s last minute equalizer that rescued the champions from the jaws of defeat as they battled USIU to a 3-3 draw.

That happened as Kenya Police tightened their march to the top when they humbled Greenshanks 5-2 in another thrilling duel on Sunday at the same venue.

Butali Sugar now commands the 10 teams league standings with 10 points, while Police climbed one place to fifth with seven points.

Wazalendo and Western Jaguars, who were not in action over weekend, stayed second and third respectively with nine points each and are followed by Greensharks, who also have nine points.

Butali, Wazalendo, Western Jaguars and Greensharks went into the weekend with nine points each, though Butali boasted a better goal difference.

Lawrence Makhatsa put USIU ahead in the second minute from a field goal, before Barkibir levelled three minutes to the end of the first quarter as the team took a breather at 1-1.

Then Justin Ngetich would slot in in the 43rd to put the students ahead 2-1, before skipper James Muthii stretched their lead to 3-1 three minutes later from a field goal.

Two minutes later, Constance Wakhura stepped up on the spot to score and USIU’s defence wilted in the last minute to let Barkibir level the proceedings and deny them their first win against Butali.

USIU stayed eighth and a place above relegation with an improved tally of four points.

Police went up 2-0 when skipper Oliver Echenje (15) and Govan Mbeki (17) scored from scintillating field goals.

Skipper Victor Osiche pulled one back for Greensharks from the spot only seconds after Mbeki’s goal.

Then veteran Moses Cheplaiti made in 3-1 for Police from open play in the 23rd minute as the teams took a break.

Chris Wokila brought Greensharks back in the game with his 44th minute penalty strike, but Cheplaiti would seal his brace three minutes later and Samuel Oungo confirmed the win for Police from spot a minute before fulltime.

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