in Japan

MS boys' basketball teams play at ASIJ

The middle school boys' basketball teams played at ASIJ on Saturday. The A Team won 35-31, the B Team lost 51-21 and the C Team played five shortened games, winning two of them.

The A Team game was a tight one all the way through, according to B Team coach Charles Smoker, who filled in to help coach the A Team.

"Both teams struggled at times to be consistent on offense, which made defense and rebounding a must for both teams," Smoker said. "Every point was huge. It was physical in the paint as both teams didn't want to give any ground.

Partway through the third quarter, Noah hit back-to-back three-pointers to gave us a lead which we never relinquished the rest of the game. ASIJ made several runs to try to catch us, and cut the lead to two points. But tough defense, key rebounds and foul shots closed the door on ASIJ's comeback attempts."

The B Team was shorthanded since it was the start of Christmas break, with only seven players.

"We were a little bit sluggish from the tipoff. Then, we started to play with intensity and passion. We worked hard and pushed ourselves, but ASIJ simply had too much talent to overcome the early lead. It was neat to see the guys develop team chemistry, help each other out and battle for the ball.

We wore out in the fourth quarter, but it was a great day to go out and see what we're made of, to learn from our successes and failures."

Coach Lorne Anderson was happy with the C Team's performance in its five 10-minute games. The Knights won its two games by scores of 9-8 and 6-3 and lost its three games by scores of 7-4, 9-5 and 12-4.

"On offense, we were attacking well early on. We were able to have some success with the pick-and-roll on offense and got to the foul line a few times, which was good.

But we still have some work to do on our rebounding, particularly boxing out, and we have to develop some more awareness of our man-to-man positions on defense. The guys played hard, though, which was good, and three B Teamers joined us to get some extra playing time in, which was great."

The B Team will play at KIST on January 12. All three teams will be playing at St. Mary's on January 19, however.

MS Boys' Basketball Information
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