By REDintern Joseph Lee
Marsiling #15 pulling up for a jumper as Monfort #6 tries to put a hand to it. (Photo 1 © Joseph Lee/Red Sports)
Singapore Basketball Centre, Wednesday, February 8, 2012 — Marsiling Secondary beat Montfort Secondary 36-34 in a late game thriller which was a battle of pride between two teams who were winless up to that point.
Both teams were out of contention of qualifying for the second round of the North Zone B Division Boys’ Basketball Championship. but that did not stop them from playing their hearts out.
Marsiling managed to draw level at 34-34 in the last two minutes after their #15 drew a foul and drained two free throws. Marsiling then quickly pushed all their bodies forward for a man-to-man full court press on Montfort. Montfort did not anticipate the sudden surge of pressure and lost the ball to Marsiling during the inbound pass.
Marsiling immediately went on quick break to put in the open lay-up to make it 36-34, forcing Montfort to call a timeout to regroup. However, the Marsiling defence was too tight to break through and as soon as Marsiling got back possession, they held on to the ball, only to lose it for an eight-second violation.
There was one last hope for Montfort, as they called a timeout to push the ball up the court with just two seconds left. It was a tense moment as Montfort held onto the ball, ready to inbound it. The Montfort #9 got the ball after having a screen to lose his defender but the ball just would not drop and they ended their campaign at the bottom of the group.
Yishun vs Northbrooks
Yishun Secondary beat Northbrooks Secondary 98-32 to finish top of Group E.
Yishun were on fire during this whole game and their hot shooting form showed that they are serious contenders for this year’s zonal championship. Northbrooks fought hard to trail only by eight points at the end of the opening quarter but that was all Northbrooks had as they only scored four points during the second quarter while Yishun continued with their hot shooting form by scoring 22 points to extend their lead to 26 points.
Yishun continued to charge on by scoring 48 points in the 2nd half, dominating both ends of the court as they held Northbrooks to just 12 points.
Deyi vs Chung Cheng High (Yishun)
Deyi Secondary beat Chung Cheng High (Yishun) 57-41 in a game with a second round place at stake.
Deyi looked to be out of the game at the start as they only managed eight points to Chung Cheng’s 16 in the first quarter.
Deyi continued to struggle in the opening minutes of the second quarter, forcing their coach to quickly call a timeout to prevent things from getting out of hand.
Deyi came back on to the court with an effective man-to-man defence against Chung Cheng and finished the second quarter just four points behind Chung Cheng at 23-27.
After the break, Deyi continued to operate a very effective full court press to hold Chung Cheng in their own half, as they constantly stripped Chung Cheng of the ball to create open lay-ups for themselves.
Deyi never looked back from then on as they went on a shooting spree, outscoring Chung Cheng 34-5 in the second half to secure the prize of a place in the second round.
North View vs Orchid Park
North View Secondary sealed a place in the second round with a comfortable 43-20 win over Orchid Park Secondary.
North View were in control the whole game as they held Orchid Park to no more than 10 points per quarter. North View dictated the whole pace of the game as Orchid Park could not find an answer to the North View shooting.
Canberra vs Maris Stella High
Canberra Secondary won this game 67-31.
Canberra charged out of the gates with a 9-0 run in just the first two minutes of the game. Maris Stella were caught totally off guard, forcing them to call a timeout and regroup. However, Canberra still proved their dominance in the game.
The Canberra players were not daunted by their bigger Maris Stella opponents and used their speed and agility to penetrate into the paint.
Maris Stella were also missing a piece of the puzzle in their point guard #10 who had led their team in their last game. Maris Stella could not find an answer to Canberra’s shots and lay-ups and Canberra also did a good job of closing down the Maris Stella centre by not allowing him to get easy points in the paint.
The first round of the North Zone B Division Boys’ Basketball Championship came to an end this week.
Presbyterian High finished top of Group A with a perfect 4-0 win-loss record. Surprise package North View Secondary finished in second place with a 3-1 record. North View’s only loss in the group stage was a 10-44 reverse against Presbyterian High.
Presbyterian High set a first round high of 113 points in the zone in their 113-15 thrashing of Hougang Secondary. Hougang, which used to be a team to be reckoned with in the North Zone, finished last in their group with an 0-4 record.
In Group B, Seng Kang Secondary (4-0) and Deyi Secondary (3-1) made it to the second round. Deyi’s sole loss came in their 55-33 defeat by Seng Kang.
In Group C, Nan Chiau High (4-0) and Punggol (3-1) qualified for the second round. Nan Chiau High beat Punggol 53-29 to hand the latter their only loss in the group stage.
In Group D, Canberra (5-0) and Woodgrove Secondary (4-1) are the qualifiers. The game between the two saw Canberra emerge 42-26 winners.
In Group E, Yishun Secondary (4-0) and Woodlands Ring Secondary (3-1) finished first and second respectively. Yishun beat Woodlands Ring 53-37 and twice almost reached the 100-point mark in their games against Fuchun (95-12) and Northbrooks (98-32).
North Vista Secondary (4-0) and Christ Church Secondary (3-1) qualified first and second respectively from Group F. North Vista beat Christ Church 54-43 in the game between the two qualifiers.