JV Mukama brings all-round power to Hamilton

It was a battle in Ontario as the Guelph Nighthawks faced the Hamilton Honey Badgers. It was their third matchup of the season, and the Honey Badgers were looking for their third win against them and their fifth win in a row.

Honey Badgers’ starter, and one of the veterans on the team, Hamilton native Jean-Victor Mukama, finished the last game scoring the game-winning basket to extend the win streak. Unfortunately, Mukama didn’t start the game well, much like his teammates.

The Guelph Nighthawks had a six-point lead after the first quarter, but most of that was because of the number of opportunities that the Honey Badgers were missing.  Lindell Wigginton and Keevan Veinot were the only players who could have a pace in the game from the start.

However, after the first quarter, the team had come together. Mukama was still struggling with producing points, only getting one three-pointer in 10 attempts. But defensively, he was a thorn in the Nighthawks’ side. He had the most rebounds at 11, nine of them being defensive rebounds. It was a strong side of him even in his five years with the Rams OUA program, where he almost had 400 defensive rebounds in 99 games.

In a close game and when the Elam ending had set the game-winning score to 85, Mukama dunked the final basket for two points to end the game 85-76. It wasn’t the most memorable shot to finish a game, but it was enough for the Honey Badgers to continue their winning streak.

Mukama has played all over the world. Although native to Hamilton, because he is Rwandan-Canadian, he has played for the Rwanda national team for the qualifying games for the 2021 AfroBasket. He had also played for the Rams from 2013-2019, where he averaged 10.7 points per game.

Following Hamilton’s 85-76 win over Guelph, they continued rolling, taking down the Niagara River Lions 78-76. Hamilton’s next game is against the Edmonton Stingers on July 15.

Cover Photo: X University Rams Atheltics

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