USEK to Battle Against the Odds and Clinch Back to Back Titles

09 Nov.2016- With the new season just starting, USEK will be determined more than ever to taste glory once again after downing LAU in a sensational final last year.

USEK will count on Lebanon’s finest talents to bring the gold back home. Their on court leader, Costy Koudsi is one of the most talented point-guards out there and with the great experience he has gained with Sagesse and now with Mayrouba, he is definitely one of their biggest assets. His ball handling is exquisite with little space of error, he finds his team-mates at the right place and at the right time. His shooting abilities are also a big plus as he can create his own shot and terrify defenders from behind the arc. His leadership extends outside the touchline as he keeps cheering his players on and drives them at all times.

Another thriving star whose jumping abilities are well known in the league and dazzle both home and away crowds is Elie Ghaleb. He was unstoppable last season, scoring at will and exploding in the finals to lead his victory to the coveted prize. His athleticism is remarkable, he cuts through defense like a knife through better. His long arms and height give him the edge over any defender and his great ability to finish at the rim is to be noted. Add to that his capacity to use screens to avoid his defender and take his high percentage jump-shot allows his team mate to roll and free him-self, as Ghaleb takes all the attention, waiting for the assist to score the easy 2 points. He’s a very versatile player with little chance to be denied.

Nonetheless, USEK would not have been crowned champions if it wasn’t for the intimidating presence of Edward Beshara down low. His shot blocking abilities protected his team’s basket in so many occasion making it a no trespass zone. He can grab rebounds at ease, as he has height advantage on practically any other center in the league, giving his team many second chance points and denying his opponent any. Offensively he has grown as a player under coach Marwan Khalil at Louaize. His low-post move have dramatically improved making him a danger on both side of the court. If he can’t take his defender down low, he can easily take his shot when needed as he owns a very respectable mid-range shot that comes in hand also at the free throw line as he is often fouled. Big guy can’t be stopped.

On the wings, Bernard Saliba is one of the team’s stars not to be forgotten. He has an old school type of play. No fancy stuff, just what needed. This does not diminish his skills and has his own bag of tricks. His decision making is what defines him. He knows when to shoot and when to drive to the basket. His high field goal percentage talks about itself. He’s a definition of team player as he shares the ball whenever a team-mate is free. He can even shoot those deep threes and switch the momentum to his side. He’s an important piece of the puzzle that keeps it all bound together.

You want to see the team’s spirit ? All you have to do is look at Carl Zalloum playing. This guy plays his heart out and leaves everything on the flour. He spreads his positive energy all-around the floor and pushes his team-mates to their breaking point. This energetic player keeps his man at bay. A great defender with a great sense of the game. He’s a great shooter with no range limits, yet this does not distract him from monitoring his team-mates movement and dishing the assists when possible.

USEK has really a deep bench giving them an edge over any team. With the like of Marc Abi Khers, Joey Salloum and Bechara Bestene coming off the bench, USEK has an arsenal of players to be feared.

Coach Georges Kelzi and assistant Georges Akiki have a great load of work to do if they want to retain their title, but with this bunch of talented players it will be easy work.