Sonics win to stay in playoff race


The 670 Sonics eased past Sun Palace Hotel, 65-43, in the second boys U19 division game in the 2014 Tan Holdings Basketball Classic last Tuesday night at the Gillette Multipurpose Gymnasium.

The win allowed the Sonics to get out of three-way logjam for third place in the team standings, as they now hold a 4-2 record. With the Sonics now in third place behind the unbeaten Rollers 1 (6-0) and Dream Team (4-1), the former boosted their playoff chances and gained some cushion against the Ol’Aces (3-2) and Kagman Risers (3-2).

Only the Top 4 teams will advance to the next round and with the division leading Rollers 1 a shoe-in in the playoffs, the next four teams will fight for the last three semis seats.

The Sonics backcourt duo of Jack Aranda and Jomac Manzano provided spark to the team’s offense as they combined for 20 points, while frontliners Erick Dela Rosa, Emerson Feria, and Jun Javier dominated the paint, teaming for 24 more markers.

With Sonics getting baskets from both inside and out, they raced to a 38-21 advantage at the break and protected the double-digit spread in the second half en route to the 22-point winning margin.

Meanwhile, Rollers 1 moved one win away from sweeping the elimination round after showing no love lost to sister team Rollers 3, 72-37, in the first match of the day,

Mike Espinosa anchored Rollers 1’s demolition of Rollers 3, as he sizzled for 26 points. Jun Fidelino chipped in 17, as the team’s Top 2 scorers made up for the absence of key players Prince Factor and Kobee Mendoza.

With the two important players of the Rollers 1 out, Espinosa stepped up early and scored 14 points to give his squad a commanding 34-18 lead after the first half. In the second half, Rollers 3, the youngest among the three Rollers team competing in the league, failed to make enough headway to cut the deficit to a decent number. Rollers 3 remained winless in six games and is already eliminated along with Sun Palace (0-6).

Aaron Ogumoro led Rollers 3’s losing cause with his 13 points, while Jake Pangelian contributed 11.

Action in the boys U19 division will continue today with a pair of games. In the opening tiff, the Ol’Aces and Dream Team collide at 5:30pm, while Kagman takes on Rollers 2 in the nightcap at 8pm. In the lone women’s division match, Kanoa Resort (2-6) battles IT&E (5-3) at 7pm.

The 2014 Tan Holdings Basketball Classic is on its final week of the elimination round.

First Game
Rollers 1 72–Espinosa 26, Fidelino 17, Vivero 7, Iglecias 6, Arciaga 4, Ong 4, Cayading 2.

Rollers 3 37–Ogumoro 13, Pangelinan 11, Kisa 5, Arceo 4, Mamaril 4, Alonzo 2, Mendoza 2, Cruz 2.

Scoring by halves: 34-18, 72-37.

Second Game
Sonics 65–Manzano 11, Aranda 9, Javier 8, Feria 8, Dela Rosa 8, Flores 4, Alegre 4, De Guzman 4, Rabasto 2.

Sun Palace 43–Omengkar 4, Capuyon 11, Manalili 7, Benavente 6, Ocaya 4, Edralin 4.

Scoring by halves: 38-21, 65-43.

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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