The S.J. Ol’Aces and Kagman Cougars gained their fourth victory in the U19 division of the 22nd Annual Saipan Rotary Club Youth Basketball League after recording contrasting wins last Friday at the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium.
The S.J. Ol’Aces toyed with the COPSSA Warriors (0-3) in the first game, 87-25, to keep their undefeated mark after four games, while the Cougars improved to a 4-1 slate, following a close 55-51 victory over the Ol’Aces (1-2) in the second and last match of the night.
Four S.J. Ol’Aces players scored in twin digits to rout the Warriors, who lacked manpower to keep up with their highly favored foes. The Warriors played with only six players against the 11-man roster of the S.J. Ol’Aces, which drew 18 points from Derek Olopai, 16 from Darius Pettis, and 12 each from Mark Babauta and Malcolm Maui. The seven other S.J. Ol’Aces also made it to the scoreboard.
Babauta and Pettis knocked in 8 points apiece in the first period to lift the S.J. Ol’Aces to a 29-10 lead. The S.J. Ol’Aces continued to pour points in the second canto, while the Warriors had a nightmare on offense, making only 2 points to hand the win to the former right at the end of the first half.
In the second game, the Cougars also had a depleted lineup, but managed to get past the Ol’Aces.
The Cougars had only six players, but bounced back from double-digit deficit early in the third period to eke out the 4-point win.
The third canto started with the Ol’Aces ahead, 32-25, and the lead increased to as much as 11, 39-28, as Adrian De Luna, Jethro Cruz, and Jun William lit up the scoreboard early in that frame. However, the Cougars grabbed the upper hand after the third canto, 42-39, as it held the Ol’Aces scoreless for about four minutes and Frank Mettao and John Santos got their offensive game going.
Santos picked up where he left off in fourth quarter, drilling 6 of the Cougars’ first 7 points, while his three other teammates delivered crucial baskets in the homestretch to thwart the Ol’Aces.
S.J. Ol’Aces 87 – Olopai 18, Pettis 16, Babauta 12, Maui 12, San Nicolas 6, Mizer 7, Cruz 2, Nabors 2, Camacho 2, Mendoza 2, De Leon 1.
COPSSA Warriors 25 – Montes 9, Ogasawara 6, Amog 2, Feria 2, Po 2, Yap 1.
Scoring by quarters: 29-10, 54-12, 73-19, 87-25.
Kagman Cougars 55 – Jo. Santos 20, Malwelbug 11, Je. Santos 10, Mettao 8, Palino 2, Paren 2.
Ol’Aces 51 – Kaipat 21, Olopai 8, Cruz 4, De Luna 3, Magofna 2, William 2, Moses 2.
Scoring by quarters: 19-18, 25-32, 42-39, 55-51.