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ISLANDERS UPSET FRIARS IN TWO

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By Niko Bulaon

Islanders' Zhedryk Zacarias spikes the ball from the back court. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Islanders’ Zhedryk Zacarias spikes the ball from the back court. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

A week after a hard fought loss against the defending champions, the John F. Kennedy Islanders broke past the second undefeated team, the Father Duenas Friars, 25-22, 25-10, Tuesday night at the John F. Kennedy gym.

The Friars set the pace in the beginning of the first set. With the Islanders committing multiple errors, the Friars struck up a small lead. But it wasn’t long till Islanders Kurtis Silva found wide openings to earn three consecutive aces, bringing his team up by one, 12-11. As both teams tried to dominate the other, the Islanders’ Zacarias twins, Zakary and Zhedryk, caused the Friars to make unforced errors, giving the Islanders the first set.

“Our performance tonight was outstanding,” said Zakary Zacarias about his team’s performance. “We should always perform like that in every game.”

McDonald's player of the game: Islanders' Zakary Zacarias

McDonald’s player of the game: Islanders’ Zakary Zacarias

“Coming into this game, knowing the Friars were undefeated, we came in with a mindset that we needed to play best as we could,” said Zhedryk Zacarias on their game plan. “We just needed to play our own game.”

With the Islanders looking toward a tough second set, the Friars mistakes led their opponents to think otherwise. Having more than 10 unforced errors and a kill by Zhedryk Zacarias, the Friars could find no rhythm, giving the Islanders a score of 11-0. Three kills by Zakary Zacarias left the Friars in single digits until the last minute, as the Islanders break the Friars undefeated record with determination and teamwork.

“I think every team as their own perspective of how they played,” commented Zhedryk Zacarias on the second set. “Weather they’re down or up, if their going to play hard. So I really think every team has their own perspective. I feel very accomplished that my team pulled through. Losing to GW was a tragic loss, but we pulled out of that hole and we made it a goal to take every game the best as we can.”

The Islanders pick up the win, with a record of 8-2. The Friars drop their undefeated record, 8-1.

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Friars' Nate San Nicolas jumps up for a jump serve in the second set. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Nate San Nicolas jumps up for a jump serve in the second set. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' Jeremiah Taitano spikes a kill through Islanders' Ian Illagas and Royette Nunez. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Jeremiah Taitano spikes a kill through Islanders’ Ian Illagas and Royette Nunez. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Islanders' Joaquin Salas drops low to the ground to make a pass to his teammate. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Islanders’ Joaquin Salas drops low to the ground to make a pass to his teammate. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' Michael Sakazaki spikes down a kill through three Islanders defenders. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Michael Sakazaki spikes down a kill through three Islanders defenders. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Islanders' Kurtis Silva sets the ball up for his teammate Royette Nunez who approaches for the spike. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Islanders’ Kurtis Silva sets the ball up for his teammate Royette Nunez who approaches for the spike. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' Nate San Nicolas makes a pass to his teammate off an Islanders serve. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Nate San Nicolas makes a pass to his teammate off an Islanders serve. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' Jeremiah Taitano gets a kill through the double block of Islanders' Bryan Crowe and Zakary Zacarias. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Jeremiah Taitano gets a kill through the double block of Islanders’ Bryan Crowe and Zakary Zacarias. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars' Michael Sakazaki gets a kill through the triple block of islanders' Zhedryk Zacarias, Ian Illagas, and Kurtis Silva. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

Friars’ Michael Sakazaki gets a kill through the triple block of Islanders’ Zhedryk Zacarias, Ian Illagas, and Kurtis Silva. (photo by Errol Alegre, Jr.)

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QUICK HITS

Shawn Bamba won the Arizona state wrestling championship while siblings Jussiah and Justyn took third place in their divisions at state.
Shawn (12th) won the 150-lb division while Jussiah (11th) took bronze in the 120-lb class and Justyn (9th) took bronze in the 106-lb category.
All three were born on Guam before moving to Surprise, Arizona in 2014, where they all picked up wrestling in 2016.
Their parents are Justin and Shannon Bamba from Pago Bay.
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