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GOING into the game, with a Summer Jam 2012 championship berth to play against the U18 Northern All-Stars (game tonight 8 p.m. at Tamuning Gymnasium) on the line, Wednesday night hoops action saw Team Pure taking on the MTM Falcons.
Team Pure, with the twin brother Setik stars Sam and Sammy, even before a single tick ran off the clock, would start out down 1-0 (Rashaun Blas converted 1 of the T’s), after a team technical foul was called for a uniform violation.
With the game now officially underway, Team Pure’s Sam and Sammy Setik led the charge combining for 12 of their team’s first-half points. Adding to Team Pure’s first-half point total, leading their team on a 5-0 run were Rio Oshiro (popping a first-half 3) and Jordan Javelana, with the latter banking in a 10-foot jump shot to increase their lead to 11-8.
Being down by three points didn’t bode well for the fearless Falcons, prompting the Gogue cousins, Glen and Lance, taking charge of the offense, with Glen draining a 3 from deep and Lance streaking the length of the floor for a layup.
With time running down in the first half, the Falcons’ Francis Java stole an errant in-bounds pass and knocked in a buzzer-beater, tying the contest at 17-17.
The second half started with both teams relying on the three-ball, with the Falcons' Glen Gogue knocking in the first, seconds later, Team Pure’s Sammy Setik answered right back with a 25-footer, prompting the Falcons’ Rashaun Blas to end the three-point bonanza with a bomb of his own.
With the Falcons up 23-20, Sammy Setik looked as if he had a "sure thing" to bring his team back within one. Setik, with an uncontested layup, seemed to lose concentration and came up short. Capitalizing quickly on the mistake, Glen Gogue drained another 3 (He was 4-7 beyond the arc), followed by another quick Falcon bucked. Frustrated after being outscored 7-0 and trailing 28-23, with 15:14 left to go in the second half and hoping to clip the Falcons’ wings, Team Pure called a timeout.
Too little too late
Returning to the floor out of the time out, Sam Setik was able to knock in a couple of free throws from the charity stripe, but for Team Pure, it was too little too late. The remainder of the second half saw the Falcons sharing the wealth, with six different players getting in on the scoring action, including Phillip Taijeron’s crowd-pleasing 360 layup. In the second half, the flying Falcons outscored Team Pure 33-18, closing out the semifinal game with a 50-35 victory. The high scorers for the game were: (MTM Falcons) Glen Gogue with 12 points; Rashaun Blas, 12 points; and (Team Pure) Sam Setik with 12 points, and Sammy Setik with 11.
Having been blown out by Team Pure during the regular season, Falcons coach Matt Torres commented on his strategy going into the game: “We knew they were runners and we just wanted to slow things down and play our game.” The young, forward-reflective coach explained what they would have to do, using one word, in the championship game against the Northern All-Stars: “Defense.” He elaborated, “I always tell our players we have to play defense first before we can concentrate on offense.”