By John Odtohan
The St.Paul Warriors defeated the Harvest Christian Academy Eagles in the season opener at the HCA gymnasium 67-47. Throughout the game the Warriors applied full court pressure to rattle the Eagles offense and commit turnovers.
The Warriors came to play as they went on a 8-0 run to start the game. However, halfway through the first quarter, Warriors starting guard Tito Canovas injured his ankle and had to leave the game. The Eagles would fight back, led by Kaipo Sotelo who scored six unanswered points. The Warriors’ stingy defense forced ten turnovers in the first quarter for the eagles, giving them the lead after the first quarter 22-13.
The Warriors continued the attack led by point guard Sheik Cariño. The Warriors looked for big man John San Andres in the paint. San Andres had several looks in the paint, dished mostly by Cariño. And with that, the Warriors lead 36-23 entering half time.
It was all Warriors in the second half as they started the third quarter by getting four straight steals and converted them into points. Jason Aquino and Cariño helped start the 12-0 run to open up the half.
The fourth quarter was not any different as the Warriors continued to apply full court pressure and cause turnovers.
“Our game has always been about pressure, we are a young team and we have to play that style,” stated Coach Paul Pineda after the game.
The pressure was certainly key as they forced the Eagles to 30 turnovers in the game. Paul Pineda also stated that their key to success is to work hard and have fun throughout the season. Cariño finished the game with seven points, eight assists, four steals and orchestrated the offense for the Warriors.
“We feel good, starting out the gates we are ready to compete with other teams. We have a good feeling about this year, so hopefully we can go all they way,” said Cariño.
San Andres also added 19 points and Aquino with 14 points. Sotelo led Harvest and the leading scorer of the game with 27 points.
In the Junior Varsity game the St.Paul Warriors beat the Harest Eagles 47-31
The Warriors next game will be against the Simon Sanchez Sharks at the St.Paul gymnasium.
In other games:
– The Okkodo Bulldogs got by the JFK Islanders 60-53. Okkodo’s Joseph Ruppen led all scorers with 19 points. In the JV, game the Bulldogs edged the Islanders 70-65.
– The young Sanchez Sharks surprised the talented St. John’s Knights 49-45. Tim Edillor led a balanced Shark attack with 12 points and Ray Sablan added 11. Argie Flores had 20 points to lead St. John’w while Reed Meyer chipped in 15. Sanchez cruised in the JV game 56-20.
– Rashaun Blas led the defending champion GW Geckos to an easy 6-32 win over the ND Royals. Blas had 18 points and four steals while fellow star Devin Maluwelmeng contributed with nine points, six rebounds and three steals.
– The Guam High Panthers outlasted the Southern Dolphins 49-39.
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