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Articles

Microgames: Pool phase recap - Jun 30, 2006


POSTED BY:
GREG
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In a pretty deep pool, Palau had to deal with Kosrae, Chuuk and the host-nation Northern Marianas Islands. The team played pretty well, won its first two games and lost only by 2 against CNMI. The squad will now face the Marshall Islands in the semifinal and maybe the strong Guam side in the championship. Palau should improve its shooting skills and get more help from the bench to be a legit contender for the Gold in these Microgames.

Palau - Kosrae: 72-62
Palau missed the opening quarter of its opening game as Kosrae was leading 19-8 after 10 minutes. On the wings of Sunshine Soalablai (17pts 6/18FG), Palau cut the lead to 8pts at half-time and a 28-15 run in the third period allowed the team to take control of the game. Palau displayed a great defensive game, holding Kosrae to an horrible 24.2%FG, unfortunatly the palauans were unable to win the battle of the rebounds: 48-69. Finally the team secured a 10-point victory but they could have made a better game.
Best Players: Sunshine Soalablai 17pts, Wallace Rikrik 15pts and Yutaka Gibbons 11pts

Palau - Chuuk: 73-55
Against the weakest team of the pool, Palau made a solid game but not really a great one. The team was already leading by 10 at half-time break and took care of the business in the second half. The team had a lot of shooting problems (34.9%FG and 42.9%FT). The team must play a better game against CNMI. Sunshine Soalablai wasn't at his best with only 2/13 from the field but Yutaka Gibbons take care of the business with 26pts 11/21FG 9rbs 6st and 3bs!
Best Players: Yutaka Gibbons 26pts 9rbs, Reid Rikrik 11pts 12rbs and Michael Williams 10pts 3ast

Palau - CNMI: 65-67
The host nation Northern Marianas was facing elimination and needed a 7-point victory to reach the semifinals. Palau made a better start and reached half-time on a 35-25 lead, CNMI showed a lot of pride to win the third period 26-17 and clinched to win in a thriller thanks to the support of the homecrowd. That was an awful offensive game, both teams struggled to score some baskets (27.5%FG for CNMI, 21.6%FG for Palau) but the palauans played their guts out and managed to hold on the pool top spot. Michael Williams shot only 1/15 from the field but he provided a great all-around game (8pts 14rbs 5ast and 3st). The man of the game for Palau was center Reid Rikrik who posted 14pts 6/14FG and 10rbs.
Best Players: Reid Rikrik 14pts 10rbs, Sunshine Soalablai 11pts 8rbs and Michael Williams 8pts 14rbs 5ast

Prevision:
Palau will play the Marshall Islands in the semifinals, the team has what it takes to win this game and to play for the Gold but they will have to shot better and get a better production from the bench. Michael Williams is a good PG, Soalablai, Gibbons and Wallace Rikrik are doing much of the offensive job and Reid Rikrik is really cleaning the paint and was dominant on the defensive end. But behind these fives someone has to step up and become a danger from the bench, someone like Lyndon Ngiramolau or Brian Smau.

Stats:
Yutaka Gibbons 15.0pts 5.7rbs 0.0ast
Sunshine Soalablai 11.0pts 8.3rbs 1.0ast
Wallace Rikrik 11.0pts 6.7rbs 1.0ast
Reid Rikrik 10.7pts 11.0rbs 1.7ast
Michael Williams 8.3pts 6.3rbs 4.3ast
Lyndon Ngiramolau 3.7pts 4.3rbs 0.3ast
Scout Matsurato 3.3pts 3.7rbs 1.0ast
Makani Ichiro 2.3pts 2.7rbs 0.0ast
Nik Techemang 1.7pts 3.3rbs 0.0ast
Brian Smau 1.7pts 1.7rbs 0.0ast
Sky Koshiba 1.3pts 1.0rbs 0.0ast
Jeffrey Tkel 0.0pts 0.0rbs 0.0astipt.j  



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