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‘DOGS END DEFENDING CHAMPS

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By Regina Shiroma

Ookudu’s Joel Oyardo taking the two point shot. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Ookudu’s Joel Oyardo taking the two point shot. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Surviving the Geckos attempt at a comeback, the Okkodo Bulldogs knocked GW out of the playoffs and out of their way on their road to the finals. Despite the loss, the Geckos proved to be a worthy opponent, as a 15-point deficit at the half did not prevent the Geckos from fighting back with vengeance. Nevertheless, even though they were handed a scare in the third quarter, the Bulldogs regained composure just in time to seal their win 61-52.

The Bulldogs sat in a comfortable 39-24 lead at the half, but as the comfort sunk in the Geckos capitalized on this. Geckos’ Devin Maluwelmeng went on to score 14 points in the third quarter alone to bring his team within one point and the end of the period.

“I told them to calm down, and run our set. Just relax and move the ball around; take better shots, and buckle down defensively,” said Bulldog’s head coach Ed Manalac.

With four minutes left in the game, Okkodo’s Joseph Ruppen began what would be an 8-0 run with a three that sent the home crowd into a frenzy.

McDonald's Player of the Game: 25 points, 6 steals, 3 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 assists, and 1 turnover.

McDonald’s Player of the Game Joseph Ruppen: 25 points, 6 steals, 3 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 assists

“Everyone on our team can score, but everyone’s gong to have off days, so everyone has to step up,” said Ruppen, with a game-high of 25 points.

“We just gotta put in four good quarters, which something we’ve struggled to do all season,” said Coach Manalac.

With the win, the Bulldogs will face the FD Friars, who defeated the Sanchez Sharks in their quarterfinal bout.

“They play great defense, we have to be almost at a 100% to pull that off, but we’ll definitely give it a shot,” said Coach Manalac about their upcoming game.

GW’s Rashaun Blas got his hand on the re-bound to score two for his team. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW’s Rashaun Blas got his hand on the re-bound to score two for his team. (photo by Jesse Castro)

“If we play like we did in that third quarter, it’s going to be hard to beat FD. We need four good quarters and we need to value each possession.”

Ruppen contributed 25 points, six steals, three rebounds, three blocks, two assists, and one turnover. Teammate Joel Oyardo finished with six points, two steals, seven rebounds and three assists. Forward Jeddou Antonio tallied 13 points and seven rebounds.

In the losing effort, Maluwelmeng gathered 17 points, six rebounds amd three assists. Rashaun Blas finished with 10 points, seven steals, three rebounds, and three turnovers.

The Bulldogs will face the Friars Tuesday in one of two semifinal matches at the JFK gymnasium.

 

In other games:

FD 49, Sanchez 34

St. Paul 66, Southern 51 (SP: Carino/San Andres 22 pts; So: Candaso 11 pts)

St. John’s 51, Guam High 48 (OT) (SJ: Flores 21 pts, Sevilla 12 pts)

Semifinals Tuesday at JFK

5:30 p.m. St. John’s (3) vs. St. Paul (1)

7 p.m.  Okkodo (2) vs. FD (1)

 

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

http://www.akguam.com/ou/tamuning-scion/

Gecko’s Jacob Frias taking the 3 pointer shot over Bulldog’s Joel Oyardo. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Gecko’s Jacob Frias taking the 3-point shot over Bulldogs Joel Oyardo. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Start of the semi-finals game with GW’s Devin Maluwelmeng gaining control of the ball over OHS’s Jeddou Antonio. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Start of the semifinals game with GW’s Devin Maluwelmeng gaining control of the ball over OHS’s Jeddou Antonio. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Ookudu’s Cheerleaders, Go Team GO! (photo by Jesse Castro)

Okkodo’s cheerleaders, Go Team GO! (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW’s Devin Maluwelmeng looked out to his team as they set up an offense. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW’s Devin Maluwelmeng looked out to his team as they set up an offense. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Ookudu’s Garren Reyes shot over GW’s Jason Frias for the three points. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Ookudu’s Garren Reyes shot over GW’s Jason Frias for the three points. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW’s Rashaun Blas took the 2 point shot over Bulldog’s Joseph Ruppen. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW’s Rashaun Blas takes the midrange jumper over Bulldog Joseph Ruppen. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Bulldog’s Joseph Ruppen dribbling the ball between his legs before shooting the three pointer. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Bulldog’s Joseph Ruppen dribbles the ball between his legs before shooting a three-pointer. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW Cheerleaders, Go Team GO! (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW cheerleaders, Go Team GO! (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW sets up a defense against OHS’s Jeddou Antonio as he tried to gain access to the board. (photo by Jesse Castro)

GW sets up a defense against OHS’s Jeddou Antonio as he tried to gain access to the board. (photo by Jesse Castro)

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QUICK HITS

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Congratulations @seadancer_bailey
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The St. Paul Warriors are the 2024 IIAAG Boys Middle School Basketball League Champions! The Warriors defeated the 2nd seed Andersen Dragons 60-47 to cap off their undefeated season.
Mario Bork led the Warriors with 20 points in the championship game.

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