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COUGARS WIN HEATED RIVALRY

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By Nate San Nicolas

Royals’ Demi Shimizu keeps her body between the ball and the defender. (photo by Andre Gadia)

Taking a tough loss earlier in the week did not seem to shake the defending champions as the Academy Cougars took a 54-27 win in stunning fashion hosting their longtime rival Notre Dame Royals Saturday night.

In the midst of a hyped crowd, both teams struggled the first minutes of the game trying to find a rhythm to make a basket. But after a stylish lay-up by Rebecca Rupley and a tough drive by Kara Duenas for a three-point play, the Cougars never looked back going on a 15-0 run to start the game.

It was a great bounce-back effort, especially after a tough loss to the Southern Dolphins last Tuesday.

Senior captain Duenas led all scorers in the game, putting up an explosive 17 points scoring in every quarter. Not only did she contribute on the offensive side, she managed to serve as a threat in the paint as well by recording a intimidating block in the second quarter along with a few steals on the defensive end.

Cougars’ Kara Duenas passes the ball up court to push the fast break. (photo by Andre Gadia)

And defense was the key to this win for the Cougars who allowed only four points in the first half. The defensive powerhouse squad was led by Rupley, who recorded six steals, four coming in the opening half.

After the game, the Cougars ended it with respect and humility, looking forward to make a mark for the rest of the season.

Demi Shimizu led the Royals with 10 points, seven of which came from the fourth quarter.

 

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Cougars’ Gemilie Ilao takes her first step into the defense of Royals’ Lia Naputi. (photo by Andre Gadia)

In other games:

– The Southern High Dolphins swim away with a 74-25 victory over the Guam High Panthers, continuing their pursuit to perfection. Sophomore April Talledo led all scorers with 21 points, and contributing the Dolphin effort was Paige Surber with 16 points. Asia Smith and Alison Bowman recorded six points each in the Panther effort.

– The JFK Islanders outscored the Simon Sanchez Sharks with a score of 39-18. JFK’s Hiromy Atem led her team with 13, while Kae’Ana Camacho contributed seven points for the Sharks. In the junior varsity game, JFK pulls away with a 26-11 victory.

– The Okkodo Bulldogs remain undefeated along with the Dolphins in claiming a victory over the St. Paul Warriors 74-52. Felicia Borja recorded 36 points for the Bulldogs while Joy Pangilinan led the Warriors with 36 points as well. The JV Bulldogs also managed to pick up a victory over the Warriors 44-17 behind Ke’ann Castro’s 13 points.

– The St. John’s Knights are led yet again by the freshmen duo Kali Benavente and Destiny Castro beating the Harvest Eagles 55-25. Benavente and Castro scored 17 points and 22 points respectively, while the Eagles’ Tatyana Ungacta scored 10 points for her team. In the JV matchup, the Eagles come away with a 27-11 win over the Knights.

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COMING SOON …

10th Micronesian Games from Marjuro June 15-24

Guam National Bodybuilding Championship June 29

QUICK HITS

Congratulations to the 2024 Guam Rugby Cup Champions: Tao Tao Mana (Men’s Cup Champions) and Southern Rugby Club (Women’s Cup Champions)
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Three graduating ruggers have signed Division I letters to play college rugby stateside.
Saige Calvo from Okkodo heads to Mount St. Mary’s
Mia Topasna from Academy heads to Lindenwood
Tanner Costa from FD heads to Iowa Central

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