The French Pro A 2017-18 season drew to a close on June 24th when Le Mans Sarthe Basket edged out AS Monaco 76-74 to capture the league title. This was a stunning upset. Monaco was the league’s top team at the end of the regular season with an impressive 25-9 record. Le Mans ended the season four games behind with their 21-13 slate. It’s been over a decade since the Le Mans franchise has stood at the top of the podium. They have won French Pro A titles in 1978, 1979, and 2006. They made it to the Leaders Cup finals this year but made sure that they bagged the prize in this five-game series.
Monaco was firmly in command of the game in the first quarter and secured a comfortable 11 point advantage (28-17). As the game progressed, Le Mans slowly chipped away at the lead and evened up the score as both teams headed into the fourth and final quarter. In the final minutes of the game, Le Mans mustered up what they needed to get it done and sealed the victory.
Paul Lacombe put up a huge 21-point effort for Monaco and dropped a game-high 21 points. Unfortunately, his heroics fell in vain as Le Mans tripled their efforts. Justin Cobbs paced the victors with 16 points and six assists, leading their offense with his attacks to the basket and medium-range floaters.
Le Mans is France’s top team right now and the French Pro A is in a good place with its competitiveness and excellent basketball organizations and players.