And then there were four. Full Elite 8 photo album on our FACEBOOK PAGE.
The Agaveros have grown steadily in their time with the Metro League, but the biggest strides were made this year as they looked like a complete team with the addition of big man Jose Camargo. Ball So Hard rocking their custom jerseys would look the same, but had a noticeably different team this night with some roster turnover from last season and the absence of Brandon Hoyem to injury.
This game was a battle from start to finish. The Agaveros came out aggressive looking for the upset in the first round and would open a small early lead, but Ball So Hard would counter back to close that gap and eventually take a 33-32 lead at the half.
Different from many other Metro League Teams, both Ball So Hard and the Agaveros rely heavily on their inside game with Alan Hogan and Jose Camargo battling inside on every single possession. In the end Ball So Hard would knock down a few more outside 3’s which allowed them to edge the Agaveros narrowly 63-56 to advance to the Final 4.
Ball So Hard Top Performers
Alan Hogan - 25 Points | 9 Rebounds | 2 Blocks
Devon Carney - 10 Points | 4 Rebounds
Tyler Tanabe - 9 Points | 2 Rebounds
Agaveros Top Performers
Jose Camargo - 24 Points | 10 Rebounds
Fernando - 9 Points | 6 Rebounds
Oscar Salvador - 8 Points | 4 Rebounds | 1 Steal
The playoffs are played on the court and the paper, standings and scores from previous weeks mean absolutely nothing. Sofa King Good has championship pedigree and came in excited to start the playoffs. Blouses brought their youthful exuberance, to a game that would prove to be one of the best this season!
Sofa King Good is and was known for their famous “Palmer Zone”. This game would see Blouses turn the tables on them and play a 1-2-2 zone that would baffle SKG the entire game. The game had an unusually low score with Sofa King Good being a part of it. Sofa King Good started out hot with Will Chiang hitting a few long jumpers, but Blouses would even the score at 13 within the first seven minutes of the first half. Blouses would take a one point lead into halftime, and everyone courtside was curious to what would happen next.
The second half would see Sofa King Good’s championship metal began to show through, and they took a small lead midway through the second half. After a time-out, Blouses started to play with an energy that had not been seen the entire season. Almost with a fever that would consume all the energy on the floor! Ahmed who had gone 0-5 from the three point line in the second half would hit one of the biggest threes in the game! Murad M and Ibrahim would join in and get the game down to a two point lead. Sofa King Good was not able to close the game out and Blouses had one last shot at tying or winning the game! Ibrahim would catch the ball on the left 45 degree angle three point line on a broken play, and with 2 seconds left he would uncork his league famous “My Neck, and My Back” three pointer,contested...and it would get nothing but net!
Blouses completed one of the biggest upsets this season, while Sofa King Good was left wondering what if they had Eddie “Mad Man” Fan to anchor their backcourt.
Blouses Top Performers
Murad M - 12 Points | 4 Steals | 2 Rebounds | 2 Assists
Ibrahim Warsame - 11 Points | 4 Rebounds
Royce Sargeant - 9 Points | 1 Steal
Sofa King Good Top Performers
Will Chiang - 17 Points | 3 Rebounds | 1 Assist
Alex Koong - 13 Points | 1 Assist
JJ Bath 12 Points | 2 Rebounds 2 Assists
The “gang” all showed for the Stallions in the first round of the Spring 2018 Playoff, which meant a hard road to go for the Bench Mob. Throughout the season, Bench Mob struggled with numbers and also chemistry. When push came to shove, Bench Mob entered the playoffs against the #2 seed with six players - never a good thing, especially when facing the multiple time champion Stallions. With a slow start, the Stallions gave Bench Mob early hope, as both teams had a hard time finding a rhythm. That was short lived as the Stallions began to “Getty up and Go”! Brody Greig, Roger Sheung, and Darryl L. pushed the pace getting easy buckets for Jitt Locham and Mark Halfknights.
Ray Sawada would get in on the act with some hard working layups that would help push the lead for the Stallions. David Ta struggled all night with his shot and ended up with just 12 points and foul trouble the whole game. A good first win for the Stallions. Not in full playoff form, but a good start known the less.
Stallions Top Performers
Mark Halfknights - 15 Points | 5 Rebounds
Jit Locham - 14 Points | 4 Rebounds
Prince Carino - 14 Points | 3 Assists | 2 Rebounds | 1 Steal
Bench Mob Top Performers
David Ta - 12 Points | 5 Rebounds | 1 Assist | 1 Steal
Kris McMurray - 6 Points | 3 Rebounds | 3 Steals | 2 Assists
Top seeded and undefeated, The Party would start shooting right out of the gates knocking down a pair of triples early on. The Cushman Skyscrapers would settle down after getting a few easy buckets from David MacKay and Kyle Grundy. The Party would get instant impact from Zach San Felipe who arrived late, but would step on the court scoring immediately and flying around the court for rebounds and steals.
By the half, The Party led 31-16. In the second half the teams would keep on battling with contributions coming from Chris Loreth inside for The Party and some strong finishes from Hunter Jordan for the Cushman Skyscrapers. In the end, The Party proved to be too much taking a 67-44 victory
The Party Top Performers
Shaun Lum - 15 Points | 6 Rebounds | 1 Assist
Niko Mottus - 13 Points | 6 Rebounds | 2 Assists | 1 Steal
Chris Loreth - 12 Points | 6 Rebounds | 2 Steals | 1 Block
Cushman Skyscrapers Top Performers
David MacKay - 21 Points | 8 Rebounds | 1 Assist | 1 Steal | 1 Block
Hunter Jordan - 8 Points | 6 Rebounds | 3 Assists | 2 Blocks
Kyle Grundy - 6 Points | 2 Rebounds | 1 Steal
A theme loomed over the Richmond Oval on this night. It was a weird feeling that couldn’t be explained, but it was definitely in the air! Humble Beast had a few good outings, but was in a few close games that could of went either way this season. Ultimate Warriors had a slightly different combination of players, They were able to secure a top playoff seed, but it seemed like they were having difficulty closing games.
Both teams started the game feeling each other out, but Ultimate would find a small groove with the attacking play of Devon “Steady Eddie” Carney. Devon would help pace his team to a 6 point lead at the break. Old Steady Eddie became “Mr. Brick Mason in a blink of an eye! Even with the Captain Harry Basra anchoring the team, Humble Beast began to well… Beast!
The middle of the 2nd half would see Mube and Gabriel begin to knock down open shots! A new wing continued to be built in the West End of the Oval up until Eddie was able to regain his form late. Ultimate held a slim 2 point lead until Humble would go on a 7-2 run to take a 4 point lead with 17 seconds left in the game. That would be enough to complete the first upset of the night, and send Humble Beast to the next round!
Humble Beast Top Performers
Myka Tang-Blumenschein - 16 Points | 4 Rebounds | 2 Assists | 1 Steal
Sam Moncur - 13 Points | 2 Rebounds | 1 Steal
AJ Jones - 10 Points | 4 Rebounds | 1 Steal
Ultimate Warriors Top Performers
Devon Carney - 20 Points | 8 Rebounds | 1 Assist | 1 Steal
Harry Basra - 10 Points | 5 Rebounds | 4 Assists | 2 Steals
Larry Stupar - 11 Points | 9 Rebounds | 2 Steals | 1 Assist
The 4v5 game of the Spring 2018 Playoffs would not disappoint. Closely contested from start to finish the two Metro League newcomers would battle hard for a shot at the Final 4. With their roster at full strength, the Goon Squad would get a number of easy buckets to start the game and get their confidence rolling. Kingston Chung would knock down back-to-back pull up jumpers for the Goon Squad to help them take a 31-28 lead at the half.
In the second half, Academy would get a huge contribution from Cole Leon who would use his size inside to get easy buckets or earn points from the free throw line, where he went 11/12 on the night. In the second half, Goon Squad couldn’t get enough shots to fall to hold off the young Academy team, as they would come back to take a 68-62 victory to advance to the second Final Four.
Academy Top Performers
Cole Leon - 19 Points | 4 Rebounds
Anton Poburko - 13 Points | 3 Rebounds
Goon Squad Top Performers
Walter - 15 Points | 6 Rebounds
Kingston Chung - 9 Points | 2 Rebounds | 2 Assists | 2 Steals
John Tsang - 6 Points | 8 Rebounds
TTP heard the news of the Ultimate Warriors upset and was both happy and nervous. One less “top team” to get through to the Championship, but would they fall victim to an upset as well? In the first half Dan Maczko would cause all kinds of problems for Metro 1 with his size inside while Metro 1 struggled to get any momentum going as they trailed 30-17 at the half.
In the second half, Matt Anza would come alive for TTP. Being dared to shoot by the opposing defense, Matt would not back down from the challenge, knocking down back-to-back triples to extend the TTP lead. He would knock down two more for good measure in the rest of the second half effectively putting Metro 1 away. TTP 71, Metro 1 53.
TTP Top Performers
Matt Anza - 16 Points | 4 Rebounds
Dan Maczko - 14 Points | 14 Rebounds
Seemo Elusini - 9 Points | 4 Rebounds
Metro 1 Top Performers
Josh Kagande - 10 Points | 2 Rebounds
Raj Paul - 8 Points | 1 Rebound