GSM eases way to title win

GSM Lady Ol’Aces’ Sedrei Camacho pulls up for a shot against CTSI’s Chanel Espinosa during the first half of their title game in the 2017 TanHoldings Christmas Basketball Tournament last Saturday night at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium. (Roselyn B. Monroyo)

The GSM Lady Ol’Aces capped its perfect run in the 2017 TanHoldings Christmas Basketball Tournament with a 57-30 rout of CTSI during the women’s division title game last Saturday night at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium.

GSM finished the tournament with 12-0 record, completing its domination in the division with an easy victory as it outgunned CTSI right from the get-go of the one-game finals.

The John Santos-coached squad jumped the gun on CTSI, opening a 10-0 lead, behind the 6 straight points of burly center Anna Lei Santos. Anna Lei rammed her way against smaller CTSI defenders for GSM’s first two baskets, while Lia Rangamar and Alliyah Fernadez drilled the two other field goals in the eventual champion’s early surge.

CTSI had no answers to GSM’s attack until Madi Alegre was forced to pull up for a long jumper with the 24-second shot clock ticking and made the shot for the former’s first basket, 11:47 left in the first half.

CTSI then picked up its scoring a bit after Alegre’s field goal, but GSM countered behind the baskets for Fernandez, Anna Lei, and Cassandra Camacho to end the half with a 26-12 advantage.

GSM never relinquished the double-digit lead in the second half and even pulled away further, as frontliners Anna Lei and Cassandra continued to dominate the paint, while Fernandez and Rangamar were still on target, and Eleina Santos did a good job setting up her teammates.

Fernandez, Anna Lei, and Rangamar all finished in twin digits in scoring with the former leading her team after firing 11 points. Anna Lei added 10—the same output Rangamar had in her first and last game for GSM. Nanaka Watanabe top-scored for CTSI with her 9 markers.

Meanwhile, Marianas Variety took the third place honors in the division after downing Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan in the consolation match, 42-32.

Marianas Variety also built a double-figure lead in the first half and had cruise control in the second to wrap up its campaign in the tournament on a positive note.

Tawnie Manibusan paced Marianas Variety with her 14 points, while Quina Flores and Mikky Kautz chipped in 9 and 7, respectively, and Louisa Han and Jehn Villagomez tallied 6 each. Shairmaine Francisco posted 12 for Fiesta Resort, which went down to fourth after getting the No. 2 seed in the playoffs.

Finals
GSM 57 — Fernandez 11, An. Santos 10, L. Rangamar 10, C. Camacho 8, E. Santos 4, D. Camacho 4, Kenty 2.
CTSI 30 — Watanabe 9, M. Alegre 6, Alferos 4, Ito 4, Pablo 3, J. Alegre 2, Espinosa 2.
Scoring by halves: 26-12, 57-30.

Third Place
Marianas Variety 42 — Manibusan 14, Flores 9, Kautz 7, Han 6, Vilagomez 6.
Fiesta Resort 32 — Francisco 12, Borja 10, Tuazon 4, Joyce 4, Villagomez 2.
Scoring by halves: 21-8, 42-32.

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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