The Tahiti National Team suffered a heavy defeat over hosts NCAA Division II team BYU Hawaii, 108-34, in the second game of the Third Annual Asia-Pacific Basketball Classic.
Tahiti had already played two preparation games during the week with losses against Hawaii Pacific and Chaminade. BYU Hawaii had a week's rest after the season opening defeat over BYU.
BYU Hawaii opened the scoring in the game thanks to a three pointer by Shawn Opunui. Tahiti replied back with a three pointer of its own by Honoura Bonnet. BYU Hawaii made a 12-0 run; behind the efforts of Jake Chrisman and Shawn Opunui to take a comfortable lead early in the first half 21-5. Two quick three pointers by Honoura Bonnet sparked a mini comeback by Tahiti to reduce the deficit to only 10 points. However that was the closest Tahiti came. Danny Jackson's jumper started a major offensive by BYU Hawaii late in the first half to kept Tahiti scoreless and put the result beyond doubt. At halftime BYU Hawaii lead Tahiti, 59-18.
BYU Hawaii continued to put pressure to Tahiti. BYU Hawaii started to make chances to lineup with all 15 players seeing playing time. Tahiti seemed tired with all nine players seeing extended minutes. BYU Hawaii easily cracked the century mark with a three pointer by Vincent Estella with less than five minutes to go, and started to slow down . At the end BYU Hawaii showed their superiority defeating Tahiti by 74 points
Tahiti will learn a lot from this match. The Tahitians had 22 turnovers in the match that resulted into 40 points for BYU Hawaii. Despite Tahiti having some size of the likes of 6'7" centre Torea Gueirard, BYU Hawaii had too much depth in its frontcourt, and was a force in the paint, outscoring Tahiti 46-12. Tahiti lacked shooting accuracy with 22% in field goals and 29% from three-point range. The best performer for Tahiti were Honoura Bonnet with 12 points, all from three pointers, 5 points and 2 steals in 35 minutes of play. The 6'3" guard was the only player to show any aggressiveness on offence. Beo Tetuaiteroi scored 8 points and grabbed rebounds off the bench. Tahiti next match is against Guam who lost its game against Fiji earlier in the day. Tahiti has an height advantage and are likely to win the consolidation match.
Tahiti squad in the Asia Pacific Basketball Classic