FBL WIN ON BUZZER BEATER
The National Team stuck to their game plan and with a zone defence that tripled on Todd Fuller down low were able to restrict some of his scoring through the first 3 quarters. Obviously this left David Wood exposed at the top of the lane and at times he was able to penetrate into the lane for a score. The smaller YTS brigade was quick to put up a shot off the kick out from Todd and David and it was Caleb Wood who had the hot hand for the first half.
Team Palau was always behind on the score board and trailed by 7 at the end of the first and second quarters. Down by 9 at the last change it was always going to be tough for the Palauans and Coach Johnny Kintaro urged them to “ run the legs off the big men”, but while both David (17 points) and Todd (18 points) played for most of the game, they were able to survive the speed up and down the court.
The “little bigs” of Palau did a great job against the size and strength of the former NBA players and Coach Kintaro was full of praise for their efforts. In the final quarter it was some costly mistakes on defence against the YTS bench players of Ziske Asanuma (12 points) and Vann Isaac (9 points) that cost Palau the game, however, it was a great experience for the players to come against such formidable opposition. Raymond Watson scored 18 points for Palau and Gino Smau and Arnold Undecimo chipped in for 16 each.
In the second game it was the NBL Team that shot out to lead by 17-4 after 5 minutes, but the running game of the FBL got going and with an increase in defensive effort managed to get the score back to within 3 points at the first break. The FBL Team won the second quarter by 14-19 and so the scene was set for a thriller in the final half.
The NBL All Stars managed to drag out a 5 point lead going into the last quarter. It was point for point for most of this quarter and players were showing signs of fatigue after the fast pace of the game.
In the dying moments of the game with just 7 seconds on the clock the NBL Team led by 1 point. Off a missed shot by the FBL, Traxx Mark grabbed a rebound and exploded to the other end to jack up a jumper at the foul line, much to the dismay of Coach Logan Ngiriou, who was yelling his head off to hold the ball up. The shot missed and FBL guard Dennis Castro caught the rebound, took 2 dribbles and passed the length of the court to a waiting Jay Naguit on the baseline, who calmly stroked a 2 pointer to win the game.
The local crowds are certainly enjoying the spectacle of the Super League and the opportunity to see the former NBA big men in action.
Games continue tonight in the third round with the NBL All Stars up against the might of the YTS All Stars at 6.00pm and the National Team takes on the FBL All Stars at 8.00pm.