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Fiji take Gold in Womens Pacific Games competition (Photo: Pacific Games)
Fijian National Team 2015
Letava Whippy
Seini Dobui
Tiyana Kainamoli

Amalaini Raluvenitoga
Sparks Fiji

Disiola Boseiwaqa

Hannah Tuikoro

Leba Korovou 186-F-95 Waitakere LR New Zealand

Letava Whippy 175-G-91 LIU Brooklyn USA

Makilita Koyamainavure
Sparks Fiji

Mikaelar Whippy

Miliakere Koyamainavure
Iowa Central CC USA

Seini Dobui 160-G-83

Tiyana Kainamoli
Neptune Dynamic Reds Fiji

Valeria Nainima

Vilisi Tavui

Fiji take Gold in Women's Pacific Games competition - Jul 14, 2015

Fiji has claimed the Port Moresby 2015 Pacific Games women's basketball gold medal, beating American Samoa 75-61 at the PNG Power Dome on Saturday. This win in the gold medal game sees Fiji finish the tournament unbeaten in seven games and shows excellent growth for a team that lost in the semifinals of the 2011 Pacific Games in New Caledonia. Fiji's captain and best player Valeria Nainima was obviously ecstatic with her team's win. 'It's an emotional moment, we are so happy. It took a lot out of us today and we are glad we came away with the win,' Nainima told the Games News Service. It was the second time that American Samoa and Fiji had met at the Games, the first was in the final match-up of pool B and in that game Fiji were also victorious 81-73. But Nainima said she expected that American Samoa would throw everything at her team. 'We knew American Samoa is going to come out and get us,' she said. 'We are just going to take this win, we love it.' 'It's a big deal to us. To get this win is to give back to all those hard working people who tried to change basketball Fiji.' The gold medal game was a battle of the point guards with both team's floor generals leading and orchestrating their team's play throughout. American Samoa's Rhelna Ale was going head-to-head with Fiji's Nainima and both players proved the catalyst to their team's play. Ale and teammate Destiny King (178-G) led American Samoa through the half, with Ale scoring 16 and King 12 - which were 28 of the teams 33 first half points. However, Amercan Samoa's two-pronged attack was not enough to get the lead as Nianima's 12 points led a much more balanced attack that saw Fiji ahead 42-33 at the half. The second half saw much more of the same, with Ale and King proving to be American Samoa's only effective weapons while Fiji had four players in double figures by the end. Fiji were led by Nainima's 16 points, six assists and six rebounds and she was well supported by Mikaelar Whippy's 15 points. Ale finished the game with 21 points and King 19.
The women's bronze game between Tahiti and PNG was a hard-fought affair. The game started with PNG falling behind early as the host's offence failed to fire Despite vocal home crowd support PNG were unable to solve Tahiti's zone defence and their inability to score looked like it would cost them. But the well drilled and more fundamentally sound Tahitians were unable to shake their more physical opponents and with one quarter to go PNG had cut the deficit to four points. PNG had every chance to win the game in the final quarter but some silly plays cost them while Tahiti rode the poised play of Orama Laille, Alizee Lefranc and Maea Lextreyt to the 62-51 win.
Courtesy of: Pacific Games

Day 5 Results from Pacific Games in PNG - Jul 10, 2015

New Caledonia defeated Solomon Islands 73-50
Led by #8 Marguerite Trocas with 29 points New Caledonia were just too strong for the Solomon Islands team. They won the rebounds 62 to 40 with32 offensive rebounds giving them second chance opportunities to score. Solomon Islands were led by Maya Van Den Heever with 17 points and 5 rebounds.

Tahiti v Guam 67-54
Guam needed to win this game to stay in contention for gold but were unable to hold off a much determined Tahiti team focused on keeping their 100% win record going through the round games. Tahiti were led by #13 Alizee Lefrance with 22 points and 11 rebounds. Guam were led again by #10 Destiny Castro (168-SG-97) with 20 points and 5 rebounds but unfortunately the loss puts them out of the top 4 and they will need to contend for 5 position with New Caledonia, Nauru and Solomon Islands.

Fiji defeated American Samoa 81-73
This was the game of the day with both teams vying to finish the rounds in number one spot in Pool B of the women's competition. Valerie Nainimia captain for the Fijian team was in great form with 31 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists. She will be the key to whether Fiji can go all the way through to the gold medal game and with her experience and knowledge will be called upon to lead her side during crunch time. America Samoa was led by #1 Rheina Ale with 21 points and 5 rebounds and well supported with 4 of her team mates in double figures but still not good enough to take the win.
Courtesy of: Pacific Games

Results and Stats from Day 3 in Port Moresby - Jul 6, 2015

Solomon Islands defeated by American Samoa 44-88
The women's competition was kick started by American Samoa taking on Solomon Islands. American Samoa's greater depth and shooting prowess led them to an 80-44 victory. Top scorers for the game Rhiena Ale and Destiny King (178-G) led American Samoa with 18 points each; Destiny King also pulling in 10 rebounds giving her a double double for the game. For Solomon Islands Maya Van Den Heever continued her form from the U19 Championships in Fiji with 11 points and 9 rebounds. In a worrying sign, Solomon Islands had 39 turnovers resulting in 31 cheap baskets for American Samoa. Solomon Islands will need to regroup as they take on Fiji tomorrow while for American Samoa, they will need to be prepared for a tougher test against the ladies from New Caledonia.

Guam defeated Nauru 116-25
Guam have opened up their tournament in convincing fashion, showing no mercy against an inexperienced Nauru team with a convincing 91point win. Guam have come into this tournament with a point to prove after a disappointing result two years ago in Porirua, and having claimed the Gold Medal in dominant fashion last year at the Micronesian Games. They will be out to prove they are one of the top teams in the region. In what was a relatively even performance (Coach Pelkey was able to give even minutes to his bench); 2014 U19 All Star 5 member Destiny Castro had an impressive game with 19 points and 4 rebounds in 17 minutes of play. Top scorer for Guam was Kathryn Castro with 21 points and 8 rebounds. Unfortunately it looks like it may be a long tournament for Nauru, however exposure to the international game will no doubt do wonders for the athletes and the federation at large. Top scorer for Nauru was #13 Michaela Detenamo with 15 points and 11 rebounds giving her a double double for the game. It's not going to be easy tomorrow for Nauru who take on Tahiti, with Tahiti coming off a convincing win against host country PNG. Guam will be up against PNG which should be a more competitive game for the ladies.

Fiji defeated New Caledonia 85-40
Fiji took control of the game from the first whistle and never looked back. Each quarter they increased their lead. Lead by Valeria Nainima, the intensity of Fiji's defence was too much for New Caledonia causing 35 turnovers and scoring on 30 of them. Top scorer for Fiji was Letava Whippy (175-G-91) with 19 points and 8 rebounds giving her almost a double double. Coach Puamau was able to play his bench giving the ladies the opportunity of playing their first game of the tournament. Led by Roselyne Forest with 8 points New Caledonia will need to regroup taking on American Samoa in tomorrow's game.

PNG def by Tahiti 57-90
In a tough first game of the tournament for the home team, PNG has been defeated by a well drilled Tahiti team by 33 points. In front of a boisterous home crowd, the PNG women started the game well, however a 10 point to 24 point 2nd quarter saw the Tahitians build a comfortable lead and the PNG girls could not find a way back into the game. For Tahiti, the Lefranc sisters were on fire scoring 20 (Oceane) and 28 (Alizee) points . PNG will be hoping to bounce back in front of what is sure to be a big home crowd for the 7pm match on day 4 against Guam, whilst Tahiti will take on the struggling Nauru team.
Courtesy of: Pacific Games

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