The road to the AABL Cup looks even more rockier than ever before as a few teams returned from the Thanksgiving break with something to prove.  G Starz keep their winning streak alive as they put down a Dream Team squad that is going through a tough spell in the season, with quite a few tough games ahead.  The Spartans continue to prove that it isn’t a fluke, as their high octane offense continues to steamroll the opposition– this time a Norfolk squad that was actually up at the half.  The defending Champion Rebels are going through the season one game at a time as they receive a weekly test from opponents who want to prove that they can beat the champs– this week the uptempo Titans tried and failed.  Blue Dream got their first taste of AABL victory as they finally put it all together for a win against a solid Soliders team.  Monlu Forwarders are trying to get some winning ways together as they build momentum for a strong playoff run– this week the Upriserz put in a good effort but remain winless for the season.  Elite cracked the record of an undefeated squad as they used the full 40 minutes to put away a tough Raptors team with a last second bucket to finish off another exciting day at the gym.

By the looks of things, any and all teams will be a danger in the playoffs if they are underestimated. Every team in the league qualifies for Playoff contention, so these last 3 remaining weeks of the Regular season should be used for jockeying for Playoff position as well as fine tuning your squad for war.  Get your game up fellas.  FD

Game 1 – Non-Division
G Starz 63 (4-2, 2-1 Blue) W3
Dream Team 54 (4-2, 3-0 Red) L1

Dream Team is showing signs of struggle, having lost two of their last three. A poor second half start, not to mention hot shooting from G Starz Jerry Iloreta, resulted in this nine-point loss. Iloreta led all scorers with 22 pts, 5 threes, 5 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, including 7 points during a 14-3 G Starz run to start the second half. G Starz, who have won three straight, also saw a double-double effort from Steve Bollman (15 pts, 12 reb, 2 ast, 3 stl, 1 blk). For Dream Team, Michael Macaraeg and Harold San Antonio led the way, finishing with 20 pts, 7/10 FT’s, 3 reb, 5 ast, 2 stl and 17 pts, 3 reb, 2 ast, respectively. JV

Game 2 – Non-Division
Norfolk 57 (2-4, 1-2 Blue) L3
Spartans 79 (6-0, 3-0 Red) W6

Spartans remain undefeated after scoring a whopping fifty points in the second half. Spartans trailed by two at halftime before they stepped up to hand Norfolk their third straight loss. Spartans’ Tony Miller and Maurice Ford each had double-double efforts, finishing with 20 pts, 10 reb, 2 ast and 18 pts, 17 reb, 3 ast, 3 stl, 4 blk, respectively. But in the second half it was Ryan Driggers (17 pts, all after halftime) and Andy Sanderson (13 of his 15 in the second half) who sparked the scoring barrage. Patrik Mejia led all scorers with 24 pts, 5 threes, 4 reb, 2 ast and Ernest Long followed up with 13 pts, 9 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl. Norfolk was only able to score five points in the final 6:17, though, and that sealed the deal. JV

Game 3 – Blue Division
Titans 55 (3-3, 1-2 Blue) L2
Rebels 68 (4-2, 3-1 Blue) W3

Titans led the Rebels by eleven at halftime, but once play resumed they went ice cold, making just five FG’s in the final twenty minutes. Titans scored just 14 second half points, which doomed them to their second straight loss, helping the Rebels continue their pattern of coming from behind to win. Tony Leary led all scorers, finishing with 22 pts, 2 reb, 3 ast, 2 stl, and Hershel Mack (18 reb, 3 ast, 4 stl, 1 blk) scored 13 of his 18 points after halftime. Former Rebel on last year’s Championship team, Roland Tilar led Titans with a team-high 21 pts, all from behind the arc. But only six of that came after the half and he was held scoreless during the final ten minutes. B.J. Bledsoe chipped in with 12 pts for Titans. JV

Game 4 – Non-Division
Blue Dream 75 (1-5, 0-4 Blue) W1
Soldiers 63 (1-5, 1-2 Red) L3

Blue Dream scored an impressive 45 points after halftime and blew open a 29-29 tie, en route to their first AABL win. Blue Dream showed some poise that they lacked in a Week 4 loss to Rebels, a game in which they led by ten with five minutes left. Travis Stevens led all scorers with a 25 pts, 12 reb, 1 ast, 2 stl, while both D.J. Bather and Geo Lumaban scored 16 apiece. Ray Hinal led Soldiers with a team-high 22 pts, 3 threes, 4 reb, 5 ast and Jayson Munsayac chipped in with 13. But defensively they couldn’t contain Blue Dream’s dribble drive, and that led to their third consecutive loss. JV

Game 5 – Red Division
Upriserz 67 (0-6, 0-4 Red) L6
Monlu 73 (4-2, 2-1 Red) W2

Monlu won their second straight game thanks to big second half performances for their veteran pair, Kevin Alig and Ryan Pauling. Pauling (4 threes, 2 reb, 2 ast, 3 stl, 1 blk) had a game-high 26 points, including 19 in the final 20 minutes, while Alig (5 threes, 12 reb, 2 ast) scored 14 of his 22 in the second half. Along with Kaleo Kina’s 17 pt, 7 reb, 6 ast, 2 stl, 1 blk effort, Monlu was able to keep Upriserz winless. R.D. Jones scored a team-high 20 pts, 6 reb, 3 ast, 3 blk, while Jason Pringle (10 pts, 9 reb, 3 ast, 1 blk) was one rebound shy of a double-double. JV

Game 6 – Non-Division
Elite 72 (2-4, 1-3 Red) W1
Raptors 71 (5-1, 3-0 Blue) L1

In easily the most exciting game of the day, Elite earned one of the season’s biggest upsets, beating a previously undefeated Raptors squad as time expired. Travis Wilson provided the game-winning layup, which was scored on a broken play when Chris Townsend picked up his dribble and threw a desperation pass into the paint. Wilson had a double-double, finishing with 16 pts, 13 reb, and both Chris Townsend (6 threes, 6 reb, 3 ast, 2 stl, 1 blk) and Bryant Barr (17 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl) led all scorers with 20 pts each. Jon Allmond (16 pts, 9 reb) nearly had a double-double, while Mel Wright scored all 19 of his points (team-high) in the second half, and seemingly had the game won off his steal and layup with nearly 7 seconds left. JV