SAKAZAKI LIFTS FRIARS TO WIN

SAKAZAKI LIFTS FRIARS TO WIN

📅01 February 2013
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By Robert Balajadia

The FD Friars boys basketball team overcame a horrific start to defeat the St. John’s Knights 45-40 at the Knights home on Friday night. FD has only played one home game so far this season but the time away from the Phoenix Center has not hindered their strong play going (6-0) with the win.

Friars' John Baza scores the acrobatic layup though the Knights defense. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ John Baza scores the acrobatic layup through the Knights defense. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Michael Sakazaki led the Friars with 23 points, 10 of which he scored in the third quarter. Knights big man Reed Meyer picked up his third foul early in the third quarter which allowed Sakazaki to tower over the Knights front court. FD picked up its first lead 34-32 off a Sakazaki bucket and denied the Knights from ever taking it back.

“We broke down what we were doing wrong and we were playing their game, we got nervous because we’re playing in front of their fans. We managed to comeback, focus and play Friars basketball,” stated Sakazaki.

The fourth quarter was a back and forth contest with FD garnering the slight lead down the stretch but poor shot selection and unlucky bounces from the Knights led to their downfall. The Friars went three of eight from the free-throw line in the closing minutes of the game only up by four points but the Knights could not capitalize on the missed freebees hitting just one field goal in the entire fourth quarter.

McDonald's player of the game: Friars' Michael Sakazaki. 25 points

McDonald’s player of the game: Friars’ Michael Sakazaki. 23 points

St. John’s guard Argie Flroes was held to just six points, a testament to the defense FD played on him not allowing Flores to make an impact for the Knights.

“We played good, tough defense. We had a scheme we wanted to play against him and we stress communication. We did a good enough job on him but I think we could have done a lot better. I think the communication on him was perfect at certain times but we were more worried about Reed,” stated head coach Eddie Pelkey.

Things were looking as bad as it could for FD early on nearly going scoreless in the first quarter if not for late buckets from forward Jeremiah Taitano and Sakazaki trailing 13-4. The Friars responded with a 17 point second quarter including two acrobatic layups from guard John Baza to get the FD crowd on their feet.

The Frairs were without other big man Christian Chang who was out with a sprained knee. Chang was seen in crutches and is reported to miss at least two weeks of action.

Knights' Cedric Sevilla dribbles past the defense of Friars' Jeremiah Taitano. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Knights’ Cedric Sevilla dribbles past the defense of Friars’ Jeremiah Taitano. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

FD may be off to a (6-0) start but coach Pelkey made one thing clear,

“Undefeated means absolutely nothing right now. We’re just trying to win a basketball game every night, that’s all. We just wanted to come in here and get the game tonight, records do not matter right now.”

The Friars will continue their play away from home against the JFK Islanders Saturday night.

Other Scores

St. Paul 51, Guam High 44

Sheik Carino led the way for the also undefeated (6-0) Warriors with 18 points in a big win over the Panthers.  LJ Aguon scored 15 for the Panthers who are just (2-4) this season.

Notre Dame 53, Harvest 51

A battle of the two winless teams turned out to be a tough basketball game with the Royals escaping with a single score win.

Southern 74, JFK 66

The Dolphins pick up a big win over the JFK Islanders with both teams at (2-4) prior to.  Southern advances to (3-4) while JFK drops to (2-5).

 

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

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

Firars' John Baza goes for the layup on a fast break. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ John Baza goes for the layup on a fast break. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Despite being boxed out by Knights' Cedric Sevilla, Friars' Michael Sakazaki was able to fight for the rebound under the rim. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Despite being boxed out by Knights’ Cedric Sevilla, Friars’ Michael Sakazaki was able to fight for the rebound under the rim. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' John Baza makes the layup off a turnover to get the crowd going. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ John Baza makes the layup off a turnover to get the crowd going. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Knights' Daniel Del Carmen attempts the runner to get the ball over the contesting John Baza of the Friars. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Knights’ Daniel Del Carmen attempts the runner to get the ball over the contesting John Baza of the Friars. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Knights' Reed Meyer skies to attempt the layup through the defense of Friars' Michael Sakazaki. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Knights’ Reed Meyer skies to attempt the layup through the defense of Friars’ Michael Sakazaki. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

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