Finals cast complete in Holiday Hoops


The Ol’Aces 2’s Jeff Castro drives against Rollers 1’s Angelo Factor, left, and Dalton Dancoe during the second half of their semis game in the boys U25 division of the TanHoldings holiday caging last Wednesday at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

The Ol’Aces 2, IT&E, and Rollers 1 eliminated their respective opponents to barge into the finals of the 2016 TanHoldings Christmas Basketball Tournament last Wednesday at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium.

In the boys U25 division, the Ol’Aces 2 ousted Rollers 1 following a 52-40 victory. IT&E also earned a double-digit win over CTSI, 58-46, to notch a finals berth in the women’s division, while Rollers 1 took the last seat to the championship game in the boys U16 age group after outclassing MHS, 47-42.

The Ol’Aces 2 withstood Rollers 1’s repeated comeback bids and had a strong finish to set up a title duel against Vibes this Saturday at 7pm.

Rollers 1, which was behind by 8 at the break, 25-17, moved within 4, 30-34, after a triple from Jun Alipio with a little over seven minutes left on the clock. However, that was the closest that Rollers 1 could get, as the Ol’Aces 2 went on a 12-4 scoring surge in the next five minute and change to build its biggest lead in the game, 46-34.

Rollers 1 was stuck to 34 points for nearly three minutes before two straight and-1 plays from Dalton Dancoe and John Babauta ended the team’s silence. However, Rollers 1 scored 6 consecutive points under the one-minute mark, leaving the squad with a little time to make one final push, while the Ol’Aces 2 countered with its own 6-0 spurt off N-Nes Siech’s free throws and back-to-back layups from K.J. Kabiriel to seal the win.

Meanwhile, in the women’s division, IT&E played a balance offense to fend off CTSI’s rallies and march into the finals opposite the unbeaten Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan tomorrow at 6pm.

Jan Travilla knocked in 8 of IT&E’s last 14 points to frustrate CTSI. She went on to top-score for IT&E with her 14 markers. Travilla also got enough support from her teammates as three more IT&E players combined for 27 markers. Tawnie Manibusan chipped in 10, while Quina Flores and Guine Borja contributed 9 and 8, respectively.

Jeraldine Castillo had 20 points on a losing effort for CTSI. Mikki Kautz added 8 and was the only other CTSI player to make more than two field goals in the semifinals.

In the Rollers 1-MHS semis duel, the former banked on their free throws to slip past the latter and arrange a championship showdown against the undefeated 670 Sonics tomorrow at 5pm.

Five of Rollers 1’s last 7 markers came from the foul line with Jelbert Quitugua drilling four of them and Emmanuel Cobacha earning a split. Tengco scored the lone field goal in that windup to finish in double figures with his 10 points. A.J. Hudkins also had twin digits with his team-high 11 markers.

Rollers 1 had to rely on their free throw shooting in the homestretch as MHS worked its way back from a 26-17 halftime deficit behind the multiple baskets of Jediael Manalo and Sunjoon Tenorio. Manalo ended up with a game-high 14 markers, while Tenorio registered 11, but their contributions were not enough to save MHS from elimination.

First Game
Rollers 1 47 – Hudkins 11, Tengco 10, Quitugua 9, Factor 6, Valencia 6, Cobacha 5.

MHS 42 – Manalo 14, Tenorio 11, Abejo 7, Sagum 3, Angelo 2, Reyes 2, Agustin 1.

Scoring by halves: 26-17, 47-42.

Second Game
IT&E 58 – Travilla 14, Manibusan 10, Flores 9, Borja 8, Reyes 5, G. Villagomez 3, Tam 2, J. Villagomez 2.

CTSI 46 – Castillo 20, Kautz 8, Espinosa 4, Wally 3, M. Alegre 3, Alferos 2, Camacho 2.

Scoring by halves: 28-25, 56-46.

Third Game
Ol’Aces 2 52 – Castro 10, Blake 9, Paragados 8, Siech 7, Kabiriel 6, Sablan 4, Castillo 4.

Rollers 1 40 – Alipio 9, Dancoe 9, Ogumoro 7, Factor 6, Babauta 5, Pangelinan 2, Abobo 2.

Scoring by halves: 25-17, 52-40.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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