Rebounding ruins Saints
By Gerardo Bolong
AUBURN - Rebounding was the key issue for both teams on Tues., Jan. 28, at Auburn Adventist Academy in a SeaTac 2B boys basketball encounter.
League leading Auburn Adventist was the team on the rebound to emerge with a 69-55 win.
"It was like the first time we played them," said Saints head coach Drew Burza. "We didn't rebound well and didn't stop their transition offense. Sometimes, they ran unimpeded. (Six-foot, three-inch) Almonds Sebirokwa followed well for Falcon offensive rebounds. We don't have anyone with the size and speed to stay with him. Our team played hard and showed some signs of working as a team. Old habits of not working together sometimes came back."
At the outset, Seattle Lutheran team basketball team was strong on team play after trailing 14-6.
Elliot Wicks began a Saints surge with a rebound basket and an assist to Andrew Meyer. Meyer scored on a breakaway lay up and three-ball as part of the 14 Saints points in a row as SLHS claimed a 20-14 lead late in the opening quarter.
The Falcons closed the gap to 20-19 by the end of the quarter.
Back and forth the teams battled until Ben Okabayashi gave the Saints a 29-28 lead after trailing by four at one point in the second quarter.
Seattle Lutheran started going cold from the field as the Falcons flew to a 37-31 halftime lead.
Behind by 42-33 in the third quarter, the Saints fired back beginning on a basket by Wicks. Evan Kato fired home a three-ball ahead of a Brandon Lick three-pointer from the top of the key and Seattle Lutheran was within 42-41 midway through the quarter.
Seribkowa worked inside for a basket ahead of a Matthew Rodriguez three-point goal to up the margin to 47-41.
Going into the final quarter, the Adventist difference was 52-45.
Kato worked the baseline for a basket to open the quarter for Seattle Lutheran, but could draw the Saints no closer than seven points thereafter.
Trailing 62-54 with just more than two minutes left, Seattle Lutheran was undone by a Sebirokwa offensive rebound basket that touched off a 7-0 run that quelled any further SLHS comeback hopes.
Sebirokwa scored a steady 27 points while teammate Andrew Rachel posted 10.
Wicks and Meyer had 14 points apiece. Kato scored 11.
The record of first place Auburn Adventist improved to 3-0 in league and 12-0 overall. Seattle Lutheran fell to 1-2 and 8-8, respectively.