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BANDITS GRAB PLAYOFF WIN OVER BOG IFIT

In Golden Hoops playoffs action, it was the Elegant Reflection Bandits who took to the court with Bank of Guam Ifit Wednesday night in the recreational division. But it would be the Bandits who would take control of the game from the start to pin down the Ifit, winning 55-30.

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By John Baza

In Golden Hoops playoffs action, it was the Elegant Reflection Bandits who took to the court with Bank of Guam Ifit Wednesday night in the recreational division. But it would be the Bandits who would take control of the game from the start to pin down the Ifit, winning 55-30.

The opening minutes of the game looked promising with both teams eager to take the lead, however, it would be the Bandits striking first blood off of a deep three from Arvin Flores.

BOG quickly responded with a layup from Devin Franquez on the ensuing play. The Bandits’ Christian Lopez was big in the contest as he hustled on both ends of the court garnering steals that he converted on the offensive end to extend his team’s lead (7-2).

Despite a reverse layup for the Ifit, off of a Nicholas Camacho reverse lay-in, the Bandits exploded offensively off of timely buckets from Tyler Tanaka, Jared Meno and April Talledo.

With Elegant taking a commanding lead, it was smooth sailing as the Bandits close out the half as Tanaka nailed the dagger right before the buzzer to end the first half 30-10.

Elegant continued to put the pressure on BOG, forcing two straight steals off the bat , but it was BOG’s Franquez who got the action started with a jumper.

The Bandits continued to flex their defense off of two steals from Chris Ueki and a monster block from Meno, but the Ifit were still able to spark a six point run off of buckets from Camacho and Gus Untalan (32-19).

The run was short-lived as the Bandits’ deep bench gave BOG no breathing room, forcing turnovers and converting on fast break points.

Although BOG had a strong outing from Franquez who controlled most of the paint, Elegant was able to seal the game with their speed and through the late scoring surge of Lopez.

“Its always hard defense and hustling that contributes to a win”, replied player of the game Lopez on what he credited the win tonight to. Regarding the improvements he felt were needed, Lopez noted that ball movement and decision making were necessary.

Lopez lead his team with 14, followed closely by teammates Tanaka and Talledo who pitched in 13 points respectively.

In the loss, Franquez scored a game high 16 points while teammate Untalan contributed 9.

With the win, the Bandits advance in the winners bracket while BOG drops to the losers bracket.

Wendy's Player of the Game, Christian Lopez of Elegant Reflections.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Wendy’s Player of the Game, Christian Lopez of Elegant Reflections. (photo by Daniel Paran)

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

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 Nicholas Camacho fakes out Christian Lopez and makes a shot from the outside.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Nicholas Camacho fakes out Christian Lopez and makes a shot from the outside. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Augustin Untalan shoots over Arvin Flores and sinks a three.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Augustin Untalan shoots over Arvin Flores and sinks a three. (photo by Daniel Paran)

April Talledo gets by Bank of Guam's defense and goes for the layup.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

April Talledo gets by Bank of Guam’s defense and goes for the layup. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Despite being pressured, Arvin Flores forces a shot from under the basket.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Despite being pressured, Arvin Flores forces a shot from under the basket. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Jarred Meno fakes a layup and quickly makes a pass to a teammate on the outside.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Jarred Meno fakes a layup and quickly makes a pass to a teammate on the outside. (photo by Daniel Paran)

Christian Lopez drives in from the side as Bank of Guam's Augustin Untalan tries to stop him.  (photo by Daniel Paran)

Christian Lopez drives in from the side as Bank of Guam’s Augustin Untalan tries to stop him. (photo by Daniel Paran)

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Sports legend Joe Taitano used to run to school at JFK from his Yigo home and back. He continued this routine up to 1979 when he’d run from home to GW gym and back to practice for the South Pacific Games with the national basketball team. Guam went on to win its second straight SPG gold medal.

 

 

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